“Oral drugs” covers a huge spectrum, so I’m assuming you mean oral DMDs in particular, if they are being suggested as an alternative to Betaferon.
A key thing to understand is that NONE of the DMDs - whether oral or the conventional injectables - are intended to treat symptoms such as pain. Their only job is to try to reduce or prevent future relapses, not to make the person feel better NOW. If your friend opts for the oral DMDs, it needs to be on the clear understanding that reducing future relapses IS a benefit, but treating symptoms is not the aim. It’s unreasonable to expect any DMD to work as a painkiller, because that’s not what they’re for.
If someone is relapsing very frequently, and it’s the relapses causing the pain, then yes, I suppose managing to prolong the intervals between relapses would enable a fuller recovery, and perhaps improve how the person feels. But that’s really more of a by-the-by, and still wouldn’t mean the DMD was functioning as a painkiller. DMDs don’t reverse damage that has already happened, and that’s why they’re not very effective at treating symptoms, which result from existing damage.
Having said that, there are many oral drugs (not DMDs) that ARE designed to treat symptoms, and there’s absolutely no reason a person can’t do both - DMDs to try to limit future disease activity, and other drugs to help things NOW - you don’t have to choose on or the other.
If pain is the main problem, your friend probably needs to discuss pain relief options, as well as a different DMD. The two are not really connected.
Hope this helps,