Today was very discouraging....My 6 mo check up....Imuran

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Regular Member

Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 211
   Posted 2/3/2009 7:19 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi everyone....I need help and am hoping for some encouragment.  I went to the GI today for a 6 mo check up.  He had ran bloodwork including a c reactive protien (1.00) a SED rate (45) and my WBC (11.5).  My hemoglobin (iron) is also low again at 10.6.  I also had neutrophil (7.8).   I was not expecting my bloodwork to be this discouraging, although I have been extremely tired lately as well as bruising easily.
My GI told me that I wasn't "swelled", however the reason I seemed to be is because of my iron.  I was taking Endocort until Jan 1 and he wants me to start that again along with pentasa 500 mg 2 caps 2 times a day. 
On Monday I am starting Imuran 50 mg 1 tablet a day.  Does anyone know much about this drug?  I will be getting bloodwork every 2 weeks for a mo or so and then once a mo to make sure my immune system stays strong enough while on this regimine.   I will be going back off the Endocort after 6 weeks as my GI says it takes this long for the Imuran to kick in.
As of now he is looking to do this for at least 6 mos and he gave me enough refills for a year.  I am wondering how safe this is considering I will be on the Enfocort, Pentasa and Imuran all at the same time for at least 6 weeks. 
Does anyone have any advice or similar stories?

35/f   proud single mom of 2

Diagnosed with GERD/Acid Reflex 2002

Diagnosed with IBS 2007

Diagnosed with UC, then Crohn’s 2008

Current medications: Endcort 3mg 2X daily, Asacol 400mg 3 tablets 2X daily, Prilosec 20 mg 2X daily, Probiotics, Calcuim/Mag/Vit.D. garlic and Vit. C 500mg daily

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 4527
   Posted 2/4/2009 5:40 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi I took Imuran with Remicade so what your Dr. has you on might be ok not sure as I never took Pentasa.It does take a bit of time for Imuran to kick in. I take a multi vitamin every day and a B-12 shot monthly and calcium with D. It helps kepp the system up and running better. I will say the people I know that take Imuran seem to be doing very good on it. lol gail
Hallarious woman over 50 ,CD ,IBS 27 years--resection,fistula's,obstructions,hemmies,and still gail

Regular Member

Date Joined Oct 2007
Total Posts : 289
   Posted 2/4/2009 12:34 PM (GMT -7)   
Good luck :-)

Imuran has been a God send for me!! Keeping my fingers crossed that it continues that way,I have been on it for probaly 4-5 years.

Regular Member

Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 63
   Posted 2/4/2009 1:06 PM (GMT -7)   
I have had Entacort for quite some times and did not work for me. it seems work for a very few group of patients who has crohn's. for Pentaza also the same I have been taking it for 3 months and still doesn't help simply because I have severe Crohns
's since July2008. Remicide i have had it for some time and it was good at first then stoped I developed allergic reaction to to it and no more for me. I do not know Imuran. I heard it does take some times to work.

I wish the best of luck for you and don't be discouraged. Remember always you are not alone.
Age: 28
Diagnosed with CD JAN, 08.
Meds: Prednisone(40mg), Pentasa (4mg), Hydrocodone, prilosec, Fish oil, Multivitamins untill(01/27)
Surgeries: Right now I'm at the Hospital (Hotel) waiting for my Abscesses to be drained then I will have a Laparoscopic Resection Surgery. I’m very excited.
New med's at the hospital: Flagyl (1500mg/Day), levaquin(500mg/Day),Hydrocortisone(300mg/Day) ,Lovenox(40mg/Day) for clotting, regular insulin, dilaudid as needed (1 mg/4 Hr's)
TPN with lipids at night.
Words are, of course, the most powerful drug used by mankind.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 1169
   Posted 2/4/2009 1:27 PM (GMT -7)   
Imuran (or 6mp, its essential twin) ratchets down your immune response slightly to reduce inflammationa and damage in the GI tract. It does take 3-6 months to reach full effectiveness, and the frequent blood tests are designed to make sure it does not tip you over into immune deficiency, though that is a fairly rare reaction which can be easily reversed simply by stopping the drug. Continuing on your other meds for a time will bridge the gap between starting Imuran and the time it reaches full potency for you. And as has already been noted, many many people here have had very good long term results from the Imuran/6mp family of medications. So give it c chance before stepping up to something even more potent like Remicade or Humira.

Veteran Member

Date Joined Feb 2007
Total Posts : 1010
   Posted 2/4/2009 4:22 PM (GMT -7)   
You probably need all these medications to help you in the short term -- entocort kicks in almost immediately, pentasa takes a bit longer and immuran typically takes between 3 and 6 months to reach full effectiveness.

There are some studies that suggest that, in some patient populations, taking pentasa and imuran together is not well tolerated. If your doc decides to keep you on pentasa long term, you might want to do some research, especially if you are not seeing the results you'd like to see after 3 to 6 months.

30+ years living with Crohn's.

Regular Member

Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 20
   Posted 2/5/2009 5:23 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi HM,
I just started Imuran this week as well (50 mg) so hopefully it'll work for both of us. I was on Remicade for awhile, but it stopped working. I haven't really had any side effects yet, except maybe some nausea during the day. I've been taking it at night with food, a few hours before bed. When are you taking it?

Regular Member

Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 211
   Posted 2/5/2009 5:59 AM (GMT -7)   
Good morning everyone. Thank you all so much for does make me feel a lot better about the new medication.

I have been on asacol for a year now, so the pentasa isn't expected to give me any issues. I acutally asked my GI about it considering it is meant to dissolve in the lower small bowel/upper large bowel instead of asacol that is released all in the large bowel.

nc_bri...I am starting on Monday. I too plan to take it after dinner and before bed with a light snack. My GI has told me that the nasusea should not be any worse than my morning sickness when I was preg. Are you taking endocort as well while the imuran kicks in?

35/f   proud single mom of 2

Diagnosed with GERD/Acid Reflex 2002

Diagnosed with IBS 2007

Diagnosed with UC, then Crohn’s 2008

Current medications: Endcort 3mg 2X daily, Asacol 400mg 3 tablets 2X daily, Prilosec 20 mg 2X daily, Probiotics, Calcuim/Mag/Vit.D. garlic and Vit. C 500mg daily

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 1642
   Posted 2/5/2009 11:52 AM (GMT -7)   

I was on Pentasa, Entocort and Imuran together for a while, they helped me some but was not working well. I did notice improvement when I went on the Entocort and Imuran. Make sure you keep all of your blood test appointments so the Doc can tell if Imuran is causing problems.

good luck



Karen (Karendee)

Diagnosed w/ Crohn’s Disease  March 2007 Started Humira June 2008 (have been on other cd meds)

Diagnosed w/  Fibromyalgia May 2007 on Soma and Lyrica



Regular Member

Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 94
   Posted 2/5/2009 3:00 PM (GMT -7)   
I've been on Imuran for 2.5 years now. It took about 7-8 months for it to kick in. We started with 100mg but it didn't help much so in two months increased it to 125mg and hoped it would be ok. Before starting Imuran my doc did a test on me to see if taking Imuran would be effective. So maybe you should ask your doctor about doing that before starting with it?

For me Imuran has been a miracle worker. Along with anti-TNF drugs it's the only drug that actually heals the ulcerations and it actually even helped me with my stenosis. It's a very powerful drug and I really really was happy that it eventually kicked in.

Some people say they instantly feel sick after taking Imuran - they throw up, but people deal with this in different ways because they really really hope it will work. So if you have the same problem with it - don't worry about it. People say you need to literally eat yourself stup!d hehe before taking it and for some reason they don't throw up after it. Doesn't sound to logical, does it? I was on steroids when I started taking Imuran so I was also taking Pantoprazole in the morning an hour before breakfast and my doc and I decided to continue taking Pantoprazole even after I was no longer on steroids precisely because Imuran can be hard on your stomach.

As for Pentasa...I've been taking it since September and I'm still on Imuran. I haven't had any problems taking them both. You do have to be careful though because they both can lead to Pancreatitis and combined the possibility is even bigger. I didn't notice any improvement while taking Pentasa. Like I said Imuran's the one who fixes the ulcerations, which is so great!! Also, I think that about 40% respond to Imuran, and I wish you best of luck with it!

I'm just surprised that you're going to be taking only 50mg? I think the dose is supposed to be in relation with how much you weight...and don't panic if it doesn't work in 6 weeks. I had to wait 7-8 months. Don't let this get you down. Sometimes things just take time.

Hope I helped :)
21 yr. old with crohn colitis. Diagnosed in March 2004. No surgeries so far.

Post Edited (caroline_r) : 2/5/2009 3:04:23 PM (GMT-7)

Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 64
   Posted 2/5/2009 5:41 PM (GMT -7)   
I started on Asacol, when that stopped working I moved on to Pentasa, and when that stopped working I went on Imuran and prednisone. I have been on Imuran for a few years and I have never had any side effects. I still have symptoms but they are not as bad as they were before Imuran. I am currently on a steroid foam as well (I can't remember what it is called) and my Dr. thinks that will get rid of the rest of my symptoms (it hasn't). Anyway, for me the Imuran has helped and has caused no problems. Hope it helps you too! I have to get blood work every 3 months to make sure it is not hurting my pancreas. My bloodwork has always been fine. My Dr. also said it has been tested with pregnant women and it does not hurt the fetus.

Regular Member

Date Joined Sep 2008
Total Posts : 211
   Posted 2/7/2009 9:35 AM (GMT -7)   
I am scared about the new drug (of course), yet am thinking positive thoughts about just how much it will help me.

35/f   proud single mom of 2

Diagnosed with GERD/Acid Reflex 2002

Diagnosed with IBS 2007

Diagnosed with UC, then Crohn’s 2008

Current medications: Endcort 3mg 2X daily, Pentasa 2 500mg caps 2X daily, Prilosec 20 mg 2X daily (if needed), Probiotics, Calcuim/Mag/Vit.D. Flinstones multi with Iron and Vit. C 500mg daily

Regular Member

Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 99
   Posted 2/7/2009 10:24 AM (GMT -7)   
Imuran is a miracle drug for me, i have been taking it for 4 years, not side effect at all. I am 25 weeks pregnant and feeling great, i do not have any symtom of the disease. I hope my information is going to help you. Take care!!!

100mg imuran a day, pregnancare and fish oil.
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