Just because rheumatologist say "we don't know what causes RA and we don't know how to cure it" doesn't mean there is no cause and there is no cure. Research causes to RA and you will be shocked at the number of causes with bonifide research to back them up.
I am working with a rheumatologist who believes in infectious causes to RA. When we first met she said if it is infectious, I have a good chance of curing you. If it is genetic, I will do my best to put you into remission. Lucky for me, I have lyme, babesia, EBV, QFever and tapeworms. (if you can call that lucky) This means I have a good shot at reaching a cure.
Before finding her, I was working with a doctor who had identified heavy metals and yeast. We worked together one year using only alternative treatments to bring my body into homostatis. That is into balance. Once your body is balanced, illness cannot thrive.
In one year working with this doctor, we brought my RA from high moderate to weak positive. The rheumy I was originally working with was stunned when he did my 1 yr follow up. He declared me nearly dormant.
Don't believe that just because your doctor isn't up on it that it is no good. If bacterial causes are behind 70% of RA, then shouldn't you find out if bacterial causes are behind your RA? In addition, food sensitivities can cause joint pain. Most rheumatologists will pooh-pooh this approach, but if I had gone on the immune suppressing drugs, all the bacteria, fungi and parasites in me would have thrived and populated without any interference from my immune system. I believe I would be worse today as a result. Maybe this is why people have to go on stronger and stronger meds to stay out of pain.
Check out the following websites.
www.roadback.org www.arthritistrust.org www.immed.org
Good luck to you. I can't imagine how you could be severe RA and have no pain. If you want to find an alternative to the drugs that are making you so sick, you will need to really take charge of your illness because some doctors will fight you all the way.