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03/26/2012 09:11 AM

Plaquenil or Methotrexate...I need advice!

jlynne66
jlynne66  
Posts: 68
Member

I have a rheumatologist appointment soon and I'm sure my dr will want to put me on one of these drugs. I've been having a hard time with all of this. I don't want to be on anything but I know I have to. The thing I am struggling with the most is suppressing my immune system. I have a strong immune system and I work at a school where illnesses are common. I know my immune system is strong because I never get colds, never get the flu (even swine) and have never gotten a flu shot. I'm really heathy except for RAD. I am exposed to illness daily and the thought of compromising my immune system to help with the RAD doesn't appeal to me. Because of this, I talked my dr into giving me Minocycline as it is an approved DMARD also. I've been on it now for almost two months. The neck pain I have been experiencing is letting up but now I am starting to flare in my right foot, right knee, and right hand. Amazingly, the left side of my body feels great!

I guess I am needing reassurance, honest advice, and support because this is really getting to me.

Gosh, I really don't want to take anything at all!!! I'm so opposed to it. I do know that I will not take pred.

This disease sucks...totally sucks!

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03/26/2012 09:30 AM
heager1
heager1Posts: 298
Member

I'm doing o.k. on plaquenil. Just started 2 weeks ago. MTX might be a more aggressive approach..

03/26/2012 10:32 AM
stoma1
 
Posts: 52
Member

everybody is different. what works for one might not work for another...but...FYI...i am on plaquenil & doing really good with it.

03/26/2012 10:49 AM
heager1
heager1Posts: 298
Member

stoma how long you been on plaquenil? Do you take anything else?

03/26/2012 11:38 AM
stoma1
 
Posts: 52
Member

heager, i was on plaquenil for about a year, back in 2008-2009. stopped most meds at that point so i could deal with my cancer. when i recently went back to see my ra doc, he put me back on it because i had done so well with it previously. plus, because of my recent cancer hick-up, he was hesitant to put me on anything stronger that might flare up my cancer again. no, i take nothing else.

03/26/2012 12:11 PM
JaynieBeth
JaynieBeth  
Posts: 398
Member

I've been on plaquenil for a little over two years now. I, too, was concerned about the suppressed immune system. But honestly, I didn't do so badly at all. The problem with RAD is that your immune system is so strong that it attacks EVERYTHING - including stuff it shouldn't. That's why immunosuppressants are used to treat it.

I began methotrexate about six months ago. I was on tablets at first but they caused too many GI problems and I switched to injections. Haven't had a problem since. I take both the plaquenil and methotrexate. So far, I've only caught a 24-hour stomach type thing that needed no treatment.

I wear a disposable surgical mask when I am anywhere in a crowd that isn't outdoors. Usually just to church. If I were in a school or daycare setting, I'd definitely wear it at those times as well. My rheumy tells me to do my best to avoid anyone who is sick. I have to be especially careful with respiratory illnesses because I am asthmatic and prone to get bronchitis or pneumonia. But so far, so good.


03/26/2012 02:55 PM
Herblady
Herblady  
Posts: 940
Member

Hi, you sound like I did when I was Dx. 5 years ago...I went the herb/homeopathic route for 4 months...which helped with the inflamation but didn't even touch the destruction process...was going down hill fast and DID NOT WANT to be put on "poisen"...LOL Well I am on Methotrexate and folic acid...a couple years later, on Arava also....oh and I did the prednisone also, because I couldn't even use my hands or walk by then...was weaned off the prednisone once the drugs became theraputic which took about 8 months...but...I had to stop and think about my quality of life and not my quanity....and I still work full time as a nurse, so I too am exposed to bugs everyday...I take Airborne when exposed to major bugs, and have been pretty lucky...from no illness to just a couple colds during the winter months...I know it's scary but there's alot we're exposed to we don't even question with worse effects down the road....best of luck..and hope the meds work for you...

03/26/2012 06:38 PM
heager1
heager1Posts: 298
Member

not to brag but the swelling is going down in my hands and I have only been on plaquenil going on 3 weeks. It is amazing. I actually have wrinkles in my knuckles just a little but I have had this swelling for a year and I can see the smallest change.

Has anyone else had change that quick on plaquenil?


03/26/2012 08:04 PM
PauleR
PauleR  
Posts: 1820
Group Leader

I have been on Plaquenil and MTX for about 2.5 years. It has worked really well for me and all I had during this time is 1 fungal ear infection. I hope you do as well.

03/26/2012 08:41 PM
bearlie
bearlie  
Posts: 1517
VIP Member

Since cancer runs in my family, i have had concerns about taking meds that compromise my immune system but....like in the news today there is an article about how having your bad cholesterol too low can contribute to getting cancer. Plaquenil does so much good it seems worth it to take the meds and then make lifestyle changes to try and avoid cancer.
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