Complications with meds

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New Member

Date Joined Feb 2007
Total Posts : 1
   Posted 2/22/2007 11:38 AM (GMT -7)   
Hello. I was diagnosed with Psoriatic Arthritis when I was just 13 years old. I am now 30. I have been on Methotrexate for the past 15 years and it has stopped working. So last March my Rheumatologist started me on Remicade and it was a miracle drug at first. But after 6 months it stopped working as well and wore off before my next scheduled infusion. Then, the week before Thanksgiving, I got very sick, very fast. I woke up that morning feeling fine, that night I was in the hospital. I had pneumonia and sepsis. I was very sick and spent 5 days in the hospital. So my dr. took me off the Remicade and wants to try me on Enbrel. My fear is that Remicade, Enbrel, and Humira are all the same class of drugs and all have the same side effects. I am very scared of getting so sick again with Enbrel. Sepsis kills people. So, my question is, have any of you tried more than one of these drugs and had side effects with one drug and then done fine on another? Any feedback would be much appreciated.
dx: Psoriatic Arthritis  - diagnosed at age 13 - now 30
current meds - 800 mg Ibuprofen 3x a day, Prednisone 15 mg daily, Methotrexate 22.5mg once a week, Folic Acid 1 mg daily
Starting Enbrel when it arrives in the mail - hopefully in the next couple of days.
Previous Meds - Remicade - 6 months, caused pneumonia and sepsis, ended up in hospital for 5 days.

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2007
Total Posts : 52
   Posted 2/22/2007 5:18 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Gmatty,
All I can tell you is their are differences. Their is lots of info on the internet. Also, ask your rhuumy if he or she has any info they can give you. Mine have me lots of stuff to look at. I hear you about being scared. Something made me really sick two years ago. Probably drug related. Good luck and I hope you find what works for you. Take care and God bless.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Nov 2003
Total Posts : 7314
   Posted 2/25/2007 9:51 PM (GMT -7)   
gnatty, All that I can tell you is what I was told when I faced the choice of Remicade, Humira or Enbrel. SInce I have Crohn's and SpA, I could really have opted for any of them, but I was told that the reason Enbrel is not used to treat Crohn's is because it is not as strong as Remicade or Humira. Since I was reluctant to start the biologics to begin with, I felt Enbrel was the better choice. The fact that my Crohn's was well controlled helped too.

Now, I need to bump up to Humira because the Corhn's is not under control anymore, but having had Enbrel for 14 months with only one sinus infection, I'm not as worried. Perhaps the fact that it's almost 3 years later and I'm in even more pain makes the decision easier now.

I hope that you find the best med option for you and don't have to worry much about complications. Good luck.
Keah a.k.a. Wormy
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Crohn's Forum Moderator

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 3148
   Posted 2/26/2007 9:51 PM (GMT -7)   
Hey I'm seasoned! I've hit em' all! 1st was Enbrel for 2 years...was fine but didn't really help the knee & joint problems.
Humira for over a year and a half...again, OK, but still wasn't doing much for the severe RA of the knees.
Now on Remicade @ 300mg every 3 weeks since this past October...ok, of course all of the presents that come along with immunosuppression (also on a lot of other immunosuppresants in addition to it).

The drugs fail with me due to the severety of the RA...if I had started them when this began, I think things would have been a lot better right now.

Best wishes!
Arthritis Forum Moderator
Active Severe Rheumatory Arthritis. Crohns Disease. A.Chiari Malformation & right brain venous anomoly. Partial Complex Seizures (under control!). MVP & Tricuspid Valve Prolapse. Rheumatic heart & lung. Previous Lymes Disease for 10 years.
Meds: Remicade infusions 300mg Q3weeks; Intra-articular knee injections when needed; Mercaptopurine 50mgQD plus 75mg weekly; Mesalamine 4GramsQD; Prednisone 20mgQD mantainance; Entocort 9mgQD; Meclizine; Augmentin; Tigan 300mg; Reglan; LidoDerm Patches; Diazepam 5mg for AS back spasms; Restaril; Dilaudid 4mg tabs for pain. 

Veteran Member

Date Joined Dec 2005
Total Posts : 1782
   Posted 2/27/2007 10:55 PM (GMT -7)   
I have AS & RA. I started on Enbrel, we then added MTX down the road when the Enbrel started to lose its effectiveness after I had one really bad dental infection. Switched to Remicade when I was diagnosed with Crohn's last year, still taking the MTX. Could be you reacted to the murine protein rather than the tnf inhibitor properties - lots of people do. Humira is human protein, can't remember the protein in Enbrel. I'd consider the Humira, then the Enbrel if you have the choice. Anything is better than nothing, but getting as sick as you were is something that would need to be monitored --- closely. Good luck.
"My "Trifecta" - CD, AS & RA...

Co-Moderator Crohn's Forum

Remicade every 6 weeks, Methotrexate weekly, Folic Acid daily

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2005
Total Posts : 3199
   Posted 2/28/2007 4:14 PM (GMT -7)   
Hey Gnatty.. how are you? Have you decided what to go ahead and try Enbrel? If I'm not mistaken, I believe out of the 3, Enbrel is the only TNF inhibitor that has been actually "approved" for treatment of Psoriatic Arthritis.. I have PA also, and it has worked wonders for me.. I haven't had any problems on it.. I hope you are well.. please let us know what you decided..
Moderator of Arthritis/Epilepsy Forums
Confirmed Diagnosis of - Psoriatic Arthritis/Spondylitis/Graves Disease/GERD/Scoliosis/Hiatal Hernia/Graves Disease of the Eyes/Chronic UTIs
Current Meds -  Enbrel/Prevacid/Synthroid/Nitrofurantoin
Past Meds - Inderal/PTU/Prednisone/Voltaren/Feldene/Mobic/Cortisone and Steroid Shots
Additional Supplements - Multi-Vitamin/Bromelian/Acidophilus/Green Tea

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