Has anyone been on Arava?

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nic-nac
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2003
Total Posts : 708
   Posted 7/14/2006 8:27 AM (GMT -7)   
Dear Friends, Yesterday I went to my rhuemy and threw myself on his mercy. I have been having a massive flare that included hands, wrists, elbows, neck , hip, feet, and ankles. I'm sure you have all been through this. My flares usually only include one or two joints when I get them, and they will cause severe pain. So this was entirely different. I had been on Mdx. Prednisone and cellebrex. Now he has changed it to my being on Arava (one pill a day) prednisone and cellebrex. I just wondered if anyone had tried this med and had good luck with it. If you remember 2 years ago I did not have very good luck with Humira because of numerous infections. I do know that everyone is different though, and our bodies and how they treat meds are also different. I forgot to mention I am also on Vicodan for pain. Please write if you know anything about Arava. Sincerely, Nic yeah


1bucfan
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 183
   Posted 7/15/2006 3:31 PM (GMT -7)   
I have been Arava for the last few months.  I have to take it at night as it makes me a little tired.  Other than that I have not had any trouble with it.  In fact I feel better on it.  I am also taking Celebrex twice a day and getting Remicade infusions every 6 weeks.  I took Enbrel for about a year and then had to switch to Humira and had no results from the Humira.  I had to get off the Enbrel becuase it quit working on me after a about a year.  The Arava, Celebrex and Remicade do seem to help. I wish you all of the best.
 
Sincerely,
~Laurie
~Live Well, Love Much, Laugh Often, Be Happy...
 MVP, Chronic Bladder & Kidney infections(including stones) since 1983, Pleurisy & Pneumonia - off and on several times since 1985,
Angina - off and on since 1987, Hypothyroid since 1997
SLE, Reynauds & RA since 2002
 Meds: Levoxyl, Arava, Plaquenil, Celebrex, Folic Acid, Xanax, Remicade, Nasonex, B-6, B-12, CoQ10-200, CLA, and L-Carnitine
 
 


nic-nac
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2003
Total Posts : 708
   Posted 7/15/2006 4:54 PM (GMT -7)   
Dear Laurie, Thanks for the reply. It always makes you feel better when your starting a new med to know someone else has had good luck with it. My pharmasist informed me yesterday that they now have a new generic for Arava so that will be cheaper anyway. All the best to you. Sincerely, Nicole


1bucfan
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 183
   Posted 7/18/2006 10:44 AM (GMT -7)   
I am gald that I was able to offer you good news.  I wish you all of the best too.  Hang in there.
 
Sincerely,
~Laurie
~Live Well, Love Much, Laugh Often, Be Happy...
 MVP, Chronic Bladder & Kidney infections(including stones) since 1983, Pleurisy & Pneumonia - off and on several times since 1985,
Angina - off and on since 1987, Hypothyroid since 1997
SLE, Reynauds & RA since 2002
 Meds: Levoxyl, Arava, Plaquenil, Celebrex, Folic Acid, Xanax, Remicade, Nasonex, B-6, B-12, CoQ10-200, CLA, and L-Carnitine
 
 


erin.K
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 3148
   Posted 7/19/2006 9:01 AM (GMT -7)   

cool  hey!

can a person be on Arava and Imuran @ the same time?  I need to add another med to the cocktail I'm on...and I really do not want to do the MTX if it's mandatory I go on BCPs.  Also, would like to keep on the Imuran...but the rheummy says if I go on MTX then I have to go off of the Imuran. confused Oy!

Is plaquenil successful for RA?

Ciao!

erin

{{{{{{{{ Hi Nic! }}}}}}}}}}

 


Active, Severe Rheumatory Arthritis. Crohns. AS. Chiari Malformation & Right Brain venous anomoly. Partial complex seizures. Emphysema. Rheumatic Lung & Heart. MVP and Tricuspid prolapse. Had Lymes disease for 10 years.
Meds: Humira 40mg Q 4 days; Pred 20mg prn; Pentasa 4G daily; Imuran 50mg; Dilaudid 4mg; Diazepam 5mg; Avinza 30mg; Reglan; Meclizine; LidoDerm; MiraLax & too many others.


nic-nac
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2003
Total Posts : 708
   Posted 7/19/2006 8:12 PM (GMT -7)   
Dear Erin, I'm sorry I can't answer that question. I know very little about Arava and I'm trying to read up on it here on the internet. I did take placquinel for about 2 years along with the medx. and truthfully did not see much improvment. Placquinel was first used to treat Malaria. I do know that Arava is not a new drug and they now have a generic for it. I had to go and have an x-ray of my hip today and I've been in misery every since. You have to lay on a flat metal table , with no pillow or no cushioning of any kind. Lay flat and then point both toes towards each other. I broke this hip thirty years ago when I was water skiing and then just out of the blue about two weeks ago it started hurting and hasn't stopped. I wonder if any one else on here has RA in the hip. I live in the Midwest and the temperature here has been in the 100's all week. Terrible weather all over I guess. Good luck with finding a mix for your cocktail. Let me know if you go on Arava. Luv, Nic cool


erin.K
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 3148
   Posted 7/21/2006 7:55 PM (GMT -7)   
dear dear Nin-Nac,
in my Drug Reference Guide there's nifty stuff about Arava (leflunomide) : DMARD
it slows progression of RA, decreases RA pain & inflammation.  has biliary metabolism; excreted in urine & feces.
                                                do NOT get live vaccine injections!
side effects:
headache; sinusitis; respiratory infection; diarrhea; nausea; liver enzyme increase; alopecia; rash; weight loss.
concurrent use with MTX may cause risk of hepatoxicity.
loading dose is usually 100mg daily for 3 days. maintanance of 20mg/day if tolerable.
tablets come in 10, 20 and 100mg.  from my book...they are a little pricey.  says 10mg tabs are at cost $244.80 for 30 pills.  insurance i am sure helps a lot.
 
you're gonna need plenty of ALT & AST liver panel blood labs done periodically.
 
also might cause dizziness.
 
best wishes,
erin
Active, Severe Rheumatory Arthritis. Crohns. AS. Chiari Malformation & Right Brain venous anomoly. Partial complex seizures. Emphysema. Rheumatic Lung & Heart. MVP and Tricuspid prolapse. Had Lymes disease for 10 years.
Meds: Humira 40mg Q 4 days; Pred 20mg prn; Pentasa 4G daily; Imuran 50mg; Dilaudid 4mg; Diazepam 5mg; Avinza 60mg; Reglan; Meclizine; LidoDerm; MiraLax & too many others.


nic-nac
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2003
Total Posts : 708
   Posted 7/21/2006 9:58 PM (GMT -7)   
Dear Erin, Thanks so much for supplying that info. Tell me what vaccines would be considered live vaccines injections?? For instance the flue shot that we take isn't considered a live vaccine is it?My rhuemy had me stop the medx when I started the Arava and he must be pretty conservative because he started me on 10mg. pills once a day. Although, maybe he's remembering the problems that I had with Humira. They now have a generic so I only had to pay $13.00 with my insurance.
I had that type of lab work when I started and then I have to have it again in 2 months. I'm on 5 mgs. of prednisone and cannot seem to get off of them as much as I've tried. I read another post on here about the girl's symptoms being on preds. and she sure hit the nail on the head. The swelling and weight gain alone or enough to make people want to get off of them. How have you been feeling these days , Erin? Do you have any problems with the bottoms of your feet hurting when you walk? This is a new one for me but I thought you might have had experience with it. Thank you again, my friend, for all the good info. Luv, Nic yeah


erin.K
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 3148
   Posted 7/22/2006 2:57 AM (GMT -7)   

redface  Hey Nic,

No problemo senora!  In fact, it was very good that I researched it. I'll be needing that info for when I have to make my med-cards if & should I attend the nursing residency I wish this Fall. Specializing in Rheumatics. :-)

Live vaccines confused Great topic to bring up.

As we all have read on our Enbrel, Humira & other medications of the like, it is contraindicated to have live vaccinations administered. Why? These innoculations have living immune globulinsthat provide passive immunity to infectious disease. So they give us antibodies. Vaccines containing bacterial/viral antigenic materials makes this happen.

Some live vaccinations include:

Varicella (Varivax);  Live DTaP Diptheria toxoid/Tetanus & Pertussis toxoid (Certiva, Infanrix, Tripedia); MMRII (measles/mumps/rubella vaccine); BCG; live attenuated Rubeola; live oral Polio; Typhoid; Yellow fever; and always ask for the "not live" Influenza shot (I think the one where you inhale it is the bad one to take if you are an AI pt.)

  • Vaccines are given IntraMuscularly, so we folks may have a clotting disorder from the AI meds that thin the blood too much.
  • When on immunomodulators there is an increased risk of adverse reactions.
  • Reactions include: fevers up to 103; difficulty breathing; edema; hives; severe sudden weakness; edema of the face, eyes, and inside of the sinus cavity and seizures.

Just by stating @ each doctor you see or if in the hospital always tell the R.N. and M.D> that you are not to recieve any LIVE innoculations.  Good thing is, is that there are pretty much dead versions of most important stuff when we are older.  Most of everything we get is in our childhood...thank goodness for that! smurf


Active, Severe Rheumatory Arthritis. Crohns. AS. Chiari Malformation & Right Brain venous anomoly. Partial complex seizures. Emphysema. Rheumatic Lung & Heart. MVP and Tricuspid prolapse. Had Lymes disease for 10 years.
Meds: Humira 40mg Q 4 days; Pred 20mg prn; Pentasa 4G daily; Imuran 50mg; Dilaudid 4mg; Diazepam 5mg; Avinza 60mg; Reglan; Meclizine; LidoDerm; MiraLax & too many others.


erin.K
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 3148
   Posted 7/22/2006 3:04 AM (GMT -7)   

sad Oh dear Nic-Nac I do have a  issue now with my feet & ankles.

This has been new to me as well.  Started in June this year (shortly after that maniac SSDI doc fooled around with them).  And got steadily worse.  So my joints and tissues in the feet & ankles are effected now.

Waking up in the morning is a true nightmare.  I thought the knees were bad, but holey cow the feet are right up there. mad

Kinda feels like ya can't put any weight at all on them.  If I were standing for 4 days straight in 3 inch stilletos...kinda like that.  Intense throbbing, pain, cracking, popping, and swollen. 

Can't have the sheets on my feet neither...or have my ankles/heels touching the bed or hard surface when lying down.

It stinks Nic.  I feel for ya.  It's not nice at all.

I wrap the entire foot in LidoDerm patches and ACE bandages for padding.

Never expected this to progress further into this!

When did yours start to occur?  What do ya do? If you have any tips please share!

Take care & Godbless,

erin

Post Edited (erin kachmar) : 7/22/2006 4:11:59 AM (GMT-6)


nic-nac
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2003
Total Posts : 708
   Posted 7/22/2006 1:51 PM (GMT -7)   
Dear Erin, I have only had this problem with my feet for a couple of weeks. I really don't think I did anything to bring it on. Mine hurts also on the tops of my feet and when I move my toes. The worst pain though is on the bottoms which feel almost as if your in the spasm of a charlie horse. ( only that does not get better or go away. ) I'm sorry I don't have any great ideas for relieving the pain. What I do is use ice top and bottom every fifteen minutes and the heating pad folded over in between. I also use the ace wraps when I'm up and around. I use the gel inserts in my shoes. So in other words when I'm walking around I either have the ace wraps on or my shoes. Cannot walk barefoot at all. It feels like your walking on broken glass. Are the LidoDerm patches a perscription item or over the counter? I want to check into those. BTW I checked out your Mom's post of the migrain forum and she did a wonderful job for a first-timer. I like her personality which shines through. She sounds alot like you. Thanks again for the info. Luv, Nic yeah


erin.K
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 3148
   Posted 7/22/2006 3:48 PM (GMT -7)   

tongue  hah!  thanx Nic!  yeah, she did a swell job!  although i picked out the colors.

she is pretty much the same humor/personality as me...but i'm a tad more extraverted.  i really hope that she gets some benefit especially via the anxiety & panic & depression sites...really the main issue.

made for a fun afternoon.  picking out the name?! hah...it went from Linda Loggs, LegsLinda, Lite n' Lively....all this crap people used to call her in highschool. (maiden name was Boggs...so hence the Linda-Loggs as a tease)

oh you have it oh so right....like walking on glass.

LidoDerm needs an RX.  you should have no problem getting it from your PCP or rheummy. i just tool off 7 of them at 5pm.  i don't follow the directions!  only supposed to use 3 per day for 12 hours.  but 3 does nothing for me.  so i pack em' on & leave em' on there for 24 hours. nono docs don't know so.....shhhhhhhhhhhh!

but yeah, they do work after a few hours.  feels like the area was shot with novacaine.

i too wrap my heels and feet & ankles.  and forget having my heels lie against a hard surface or even the bed sheets.

dread puttng the feet on the bedroom floor in the morning.

hang in there Nic and so shall i.

ciao!  erin


nic-nac
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2003
Total Posts : 708
   Posted 7/22/2006 8:41 PM (GMT -7)   
Erin, Have you been to your rhuemy since this started with your feet, and If so did he say this too was part of the RA?? I'm going to call mine on Monday and see if I can get some of those patches. I know what you mean about hating to put your feet down in the morning. I start grabbing onto the furniture to try and keep my whole weight off of my feet. I'll hang in there too. Luv, Nic


erin.K
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 3148
   Posted 7/22/2006 9:02 PM (GMT -7)   
Nah...haven't seen rheummy since June 6th? When I had my knees done. 2 weeks after that & the SSDI goc did a number manipulating all the joints! I think that's what sent this in a flare. Since then the feet & ankles became worse.
Rheummy called me last nite. He thinks what my PCP thinks...it's a progression, and perhaps more advanced than RA going into MCTD.
I'm pretty sure that the LidoDerm can be a call in to the pharmy. I could be wrong...but I'm 80% sure! They do help Nic. Wrapping like 2 along the whole heal and across the ankle on both feet & wrapped in an ACE. The patches are about the size of a large greating card ( 4.5X6.6 )approx.
Yeah, I do the same...hoist myself on armoirs, dressers, tables, crutches....anything it's terrible.
LidoDerm does a good job at numbing things pretty well. They were $$$ when I had no insurance. But with medicaid they're no cost. With my HMO I think they were about $80 I had to pay.
Hope that price came down as well!
Take care Nic,
erin
Active, Severe Rheumatory Arthritis. Crohns. AS. Chiari Malformation & Right Brain venous anomoly. Partial complex seizures. Emphysema. Rheumatic Lung & Heart. MVP and Tricuspid prolapse. Had Lymes disease for 10 years.
Meds: Humira 40mg Q 4 days; Pred 20mg prn; Pentasa 4G daily; Imuran 50mg; Dilaudid 4mg; Diazepam 5mg; Avinza 60mg; Reglan; Meclizine; LidoDerm; MiraLax & too many others.

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