Remicade or Aza causing liver problems ?

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Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2008
Total Posts : 42
   Posted 4/1/2008 1:30 PM (GMT -7)   
I have been having Inlifimab ( remivade ) infusions and at the same time have started azathiprine ( 75mg ) for a flareup . these meds seem to have been working great , especially the infliximab , and ive had no real side effects ...
however on doing routine bloods my doctors have noted that my ALT , liver functions are high and coincide with the start of the meds , getting higher and higher
the doctor doesnt know what it is , and has blamed the azathioprine - but he wont send me for another blood test for another 2 weeks now ? .. which i will try to change and get another one done in a week
has anyone else had liver problems from any crohns meds .
i also take prednisolone , asacaol and codiene but have done for years on and off
any thoughts or advice would be great !

Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2003
Total Posts : 1811
   Posted 4/1/2008 1:48 PM (GMT -7)   
My best educated guess would be to blame the azathioprine too. I had trouble with my liver when on high doses of 6mp (which is very similar to Imuran/aza). I've been on high doses of remicade for 6 years, pred and asacol and NO liver trouble.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2004
Total Posts : 1169
   Posted 4/1/2008 4:48 PM (GMT -7)   
sorry about the liver reaction I had 3 remicade infusions was really allergic to it
couldnot take imuran either---caused diabetes in my case--call your gi if you feel
really uncomfortable with the count--remember with crohns we are all different ok.
best of luck to you and take care--
crohns -diabetes,highblood preasure,chronic pain, arthritis

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 2346
   Posted 4/1/2008 5:10 PM (GMT -7)   
I would blame the azathioprine also. I was on imuran (and remicade) for 3 years, and I had to quit th imuran a few months ago bcause it was messing with my liver. I am still on the remicade and my labs are now fine.

Another thing to think about is the asacol you have in the mix. Because you take asacol also, you might need a lower dose of azathioprine. My dr. explained it to me, but I totally didn't understand it, but somehow they mix and make it more opens the receptors or something...anyway, might be something to ask your gi.

I have been fine without the imuran, and I actually feel better without it.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 884
   Posted 4/2/2008 7:01 AM (GMT -7)   
I haven't taken azathioprine but have been having problems with my liver enzymes being elevated also.  ALT got up over 300 and AST over 200.  GI first thought it was some of the meds I'm on, so he took me off some that he thought I could live without, but the enzymes still go up and down.  They were high before I started 6-MP, so that didn't cause the problems to start with, but I know that one doesn't help any.  He's considered taking me off of it due to my enzymes. 
I've had an ERCP, MRCP and liver biopsy recently and all any of it showed was mild dilation in the bile ducts.  GI wasn't worried but clinical trial Dr. (and I) wanted to find out what was causing the elevation, so they ordered some other blood tests...still waiting to find out if those showed anything.  I've tried linking the elevations back to Remicade treatments, birth control shots, clinical trial shots, etc. but none of them seem to coincide for me.  I hope they figure yours out!     
...rejoice in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverence; perseverence, character; and character, hope.   Romans 5:3-4

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