well for me, I had been flaring for about
a year & a half, & had done a couple courses of pred during that time- the first course worked ok, tapered down, started becoming symptomatic again. 2nd course did absolutely nothing... I was very ill, lots of blood, lots of D, losing lots of weight. My GI did a sigmoidoscpy to check out how things looked, just prior to beginng Remicade. We both brought it up, really- it was basically the last option, as I had been on Asacol, Rowasa enemas, steroid enemas, Imuran, & pred at one time or another. The first infusion was like am iracle, the 2nd one put me in the hospital with strep pneumonia, drug induced hepatitis, heart murmurs. BAD news. But I did go back on it- after careful consideration/discussion with my GI, we gave it another try. The 3rd infusion worked ok, nothing great- I became symptomatic within 3 weeks. Then the surgery talks started- went thru all of the pre-ops, had appt. for surgery scheduled in November '07. As a last ditch effort, my GI & I upped the remicade dose- again, worked wonders the first time, & has been slowly working less & less since then. I've had 2 infusions every 7 weeks at the higher dose so far- am flaring now, mildly, mostly bleeding in the AM's, then am "ok" the rest of the day, up a couple times during the night most nights. My next infusion is in 11 days- am hoping this will kick me back into "remission", & then schedule the infusions every 6 weeks. I gotta admit I'm discouraged- have been thinking lately "Gee, maybe I should have gone thru with the surgery.... I'd be fine by now....". BUT- saying all that, Remicade has given me the most symptom free times in my life since I was diagnosed- I say go for it! Yeah, the side effects are scary, but..... we're living now, you know? The possible complications from secondary infections are what freak me out the most- considering the fact that we're immune suppressed as it is, Remicade increases your chances of getting a nasty infection.. I still worry every infusion I'm going to wind up back in the hospital!
hey pessimist- why exactly are you anti-Remicade? Is it not helping you? And have you tried the immune suppressants, Imuran/6MP, etc? I'm not anti-Remicade, but I don't think it's the wonder drug science thought it would be. If it doesn't help, surgery is really the only other option, in terms of a "cure".