how many taking 5-ASA and azathioprine?

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Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2007
Total Posts : 1010
   Posted 3/4/2008 5:55 AM (GMT -7)   
So recently a research article is published in the American Journal of gastroenteroloy 2007;102:2747-53. ( Dose-dependent influence of 5-aminosalicylates on thiopurine metabolism) indicating that there are some benefits to dual therapy with 5-ASAs(penatas, messalines etc) and thipruine drugs (6-MP, azathioprine, imuran)

This week The European Journal of gastroenterology and hepatology 2008;20:169-73 publishes an article that says the dual therapy carries a greater risk of adverse outcomes.

Hard to keep up with science. No wonder there are so many treatment models. Guess it depends which journal articles your doc has read last.

So to stay on both drugs or not. Last time I tried to come off pentasa I had an increase in symptoms. Now my dose of azathioprine has been increased again by half and in a couple of months I'm hoping to again try to come off the pentasa. Just wondering what others experiences have been on the two medications.

Any of you able to come off 5-ASA after starting imuran, azathioprine etc.?

30+ years living with Crohn's.

Regular Member

Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 257
   Posted 3/4/2008 6:29 AM (GMT -7)   
I have been on both pentasa and azathioprine for over a year now and the combination seems to work well. I take 75 mg of azathioprine and 8 pentasa capsules a day. I am also on Humira. The addition of the Humira, which was about 10 months ago now, was what really seemed to help me. If I had to pick a RX to drop it would not be the pentasa, I don't have any side effects from it and I don't think I have ever read about any really bad long term side effects from it. I would rather drop the imuran or humira as both of those has the risk of cancer. MB

Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 456
   Posted 3/4/2008 8:08 AM (GMT -7)   

I'm on both Pentasa and Imuran, and have been for about 8 months.  The only side effect I'm aware of was hair loss last fall, and that stopped when I added a B vitamin daily.  My doctor thought at the time that it was my body's reaction to everything it had been through, and not drug related anyway.

My GI would just as soon see me off the Pentasa.  He doesn't believe it does much.  But I resisted when he suggested it, and he didn't push it.  I was just starting to get stable at the time, and I didn't want to risk backsliding.  Once I'm off the Pred and stable I'll consider going off the Pentasa.

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