6 mp- just prescribed

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pigtail
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 8/6/2008 1:56 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi,
First time on this chat site and needing some emotional and drug support. After having uc for 43 years ( that's right and plenty of suffering etc) the old stand by drugs, Colazol etc  are no longer effective. Was Rx'd with 6 mp today and as a nurse, read all the side effects. Have already experience chemo for breast Ca 15 years ago with many unpleasant memories. Is this as bad as that was? Dr. says no but I am skeptical. Prednisone has caused osteo porosis so cant stay on it.
Any help would be greatly appreciated from your experiences with this drug. Many thanks...
adrienne

Beth75
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 2148
   Posted 8/6/2008 3:45 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Adrienne,

I am on Azathioprine, similar to 6-MP, its the generic of Imuran. For me initally I did get a little bit of upset stomach and also had a lot of fatigue. I have been taking it at night after dinner for about 10 mos now and really the only thing is I fall alseep around 9pm when I used to fall asleep 10-11pm and I am tired but not as tired as I initally was.

I take pred (my upper) in the am and aza (my downer) at night time.

HTH!
Beth, 32 ~ hoping to taper pred successfully, wish me luck!
Major Flare Sept/Oct 07
UC dx'd 03/00 (Proctosigmoiditis); Pancolitis since 09/07
Azathioprine 200mg 1xday nightly; Calcium and Vit D 500mg 3xday, Multi Vit, Folic Acid 400mg 2xday, Prilosec, Probiotics.
Minimal Change Disease (Kidney Disorder) dx'd 09/07 - partial remission since 03/08
Prednisone 15mg 1xday, Simvastatin 20mg 1xday, Diovan 160mg 2xday. Tekturna 300mg 1xday, Fosomax 70mg 1xweek. MCD may be from hypersensitivty to 5ASA drugs.  Do you have edema? If so, check your blood protien level!
 


LWW1993
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2006
Total Posts : 90
   Posted 8/6/2008 4:26 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Pigtail - Welcome to Healingwell. I think you'll find a lot of great advice and support on the forum. I know it's helped me a lot, especially when I was faced with the same decision you are faced with - to start 6MP.

I started taking it taking 6MP 5 months ago. I was told that it takes 3-6 months to "kick-in". I was also on prednisone at the time and was slowly tapering off it. My UC was already fairly stable from the prednisone, but I had already been on and off (mostly on) it for two years and needed to try something else. Because I was already stable, I didn't notice a huge improvement from the 6MP, but I was extremely tired. I knew this was common, but I didn't know how much of it was medication related vs. just being tired from working full-time and from having a toddler. Well, now five months later and being fully off of the prednisone for two months, I feel great! The tiredness has gone away and I'm newly pregnant! Now I know if I get tired it will be pregnancy related and not 6MP. My UC has also never been better. One sometimes two formed BMs a day.

My advice to you is to give it a try. It's a big jump from the traditional medications, but I figured I might as well try it. If it didn't work I would have to find a different solution.

It will probably take some tweaking to find the right dosage. My GI had me start with a small dose for my weight 50 mgs. He increased it to 75 mgs after two months, but then my liver wasn't tolerating that dose, so now I alternate 50 mgs one night, 75 mgs the next.

Good luck and I hope you start feeling better soon.
Diagnosed UC - 1993
32 year old female

Current Meds:
6-MP - 50 mg one night 75 Mgs the next
Colazal (3 pills three times a day)
Folic Acid


~ChristieAnn67~
Regular Member


Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 151
   Posted 8/6/2008 9:56 PM (GMT -6)   
Well,  I have been on 6-mp for quite a while now (along with pentasa)...and they were one of my best maintenance drugs I'd been on...and believe me,  i'd tried alot!!   It kept my UC in decent control for a long time....and during that time,  I felt good.    I don't think I"ve noticed any side effects from it, other than it did elevate my liver enzymes, and sure I'm always a bit fatigued, but that may have been due to being a busy working mom....but I felt good.    However,  I did get the worst flare I'd ever had back in Nov....(not sure why)...but now I"m on remicade as well, as the 6-mp and pentasa...and hopefully back in remission??  (currently tapering off pred, and down to 5mg twice a day).......good luck with trying it if you decide too....oh and welcome to the site!!  :o)
                                          ~Christie
41 yo RN, happily married, with 2 beautiful daughters, Tianna(14 yo) and Alyssa(10 yo).   Diagnosed L sided Ulcerative Colitis in Jan '04 and Diabetes type 2 in June '05. (Complete remission from Nov. 07 to July 08 d/t Remicade) hoping for remission again after this current flare.
                                         Medications
Remicade infusions ~ 11/6/07, 12/6/07, 12/20/07, 2/14/08, 4/10/08, 6/08, 6-MP 100mg daily, Pentasa 500mg twice a day, Lantus insulin 15 units daily, Amaryl 2mg daily, multi-vitamin daily, Calcium daily, B complex vit daily,  and pro-biotics daily.


pigtail
New Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 2
   Posted 8/7/2008 11:59 AM (GMT -6)   
Thanks to all of you wonderful, caring, fellow uc sufferers... I am anxiously reading your replies to my delema of going on 6 mp and your experiences of taking this drug. Am happy to hear it has helped you. Thinking of going to Mt. Sinai in NYC for an opinion as to whether this drug or Humara is the drug of choice. any experiences with that?
Thanks to all, again for your replies,
Adrinene

Beth75
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 2148
   Posted 8/7/2008 12:20 PM (GMT -6)   
Humira is not FDA approved yet, so I think you either need to get it approved 'off label' through your ins. co. and they may want to you try 6mp and remi before they would approve it, not all ins. co's will approve off label anyway, so check first and if not you would need to get on a study.

I think there are a few ppl here on Humira, it is FDA approved for Chron's so if you want to know about side effects and stuff that board might be helpful too.

best of luck!
Beth, 32 ~ hoping to taper pred successfully, wish me luck!
Major Flare Sept/Oct 07
UC dx'd 03/00 (Proctosigmoiditis); Pancolitis since 09/07
Azathioprine 200mg 1xday nightly; Calcium and Vit D 500mg 3xday, Multi Vit, Folic Acid 400mg 2xday, Prilosec, Probiotics.
Minimal Change Disease (Kidney Disorder) dx'd 09/07 - partial remission since 03/08
Prednisone 15mg 1xday, Simvastatin 20mg 1xday, Diovan 160mg 2xday. Tekturna 300mg 1xday, Fosomax 70mg 1xweek. MCD may be from hypersensitivty to 5ASA drugs.  Do you have edema? If so, check your blood protien level!
 


Big Dog
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 62
   Posted 8/7/2008 10:08 PM (GMT -6)   
This is very helpful for me to read as well. Thank you all! Our little girl is only 8 yo and is about 65 lbs (now that she's gained 15 back after sever UC flare). She's been on the generic 6MP for 4 months and doing great - or so we thought. We had some blood work sent to the lab in CA and I guess her body isn't metabolizing it as much as expected. But her symptoms are gone and she's down to .5 mg prednisone a day. So a little thrown when they prescribed the brand name 6MP Purinethol and also now alarmed at the dose - 100 mg a day! She went straight into zombie land the very day we started giving it to her. Took her off of it for 2 whole days and she's back to normal. Now today, we put her on just one 50 mg dose and she seems very tired and having hot flashes from her neck up. Weird, huh? Can I chalk this up to a normal reaction? Her UC symptoms still not around, we are thankful for that!
Mother of 8 yo UC patient
20 mg prednisone daily
.5 mg prednisone daily
Asacol 6 pills daily
Lialda 3 pills daily
Prevacid
6MP generic
Purinethol brand name 6MP
Fish Oil, Probiotics, Immune System Boosters


piper_chris
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 73
   Posted 8/7/2008 11:47 PM (GMT -6)   
Big Dog,
100mg 6mp for a 65 lb person sounds like a lot to me, but a doctor would know better than I would. I just went up to 100mg myself, and I weigh 120 lbs. I'm not sure if mine is brand name or generic, how do you tell? Is there a difference in dosage between brand name and generic? Make sure she is getting regular blood work done to watch for possible bad reactions. I get blood drawn every 2 weeks and they do a CBC (complete blood count) and CMP (comprehensive metabolic panel) on me. I think some other people's doctors check additional blood work items, but I'm not sure specifically what items.
- female 41, diagnosed ulcerative colitis Feb 2005
- currently 15mg prednisone (tapering down from 80mg), 100 mg 6-MP/mercaptopurine/purinethol, asacol/mesalamine 4800mg (4 pills x 3 times day), 1 Canasa 1000mg nightly
- VSL#3, Benefiber, multivitamin, chewable calcium, fish oil, sometimes iron pills


burnabygirl
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2008
Total Posts : 205
   Posted 8/8/2008 12:16 AM (GMT -6)   
I am 100 lbs and I'm taking 50 mg of Azathioprine everyday. My doctor wanted me to increase the dosage to 100 mg but I refused. I think I'm doing fine with 50 mg per day.
UC since July 2006. Medications: Salofalk enema nightly.
Remission from Nov 2006 to Oct 2007. Then a bad cold and a bad flare till the present.
Pancolitis diagnosed in April 2008. Current medications: Salofalk enema, Salofalk tablets 500mg x 3/day, Azathioprine 50 mg. Warfarin for my Deep Vein Thrombosis which resulted from diarrheas and dehydration in Feb 2008.
Supplements: Probiotics, Calcium with Vitamin D, Vitamin B Complex, Vitamin C and psyllium capsule (Metamucil)


julee70
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2007
Total Posts : 486
   Posted 8/8/2008 10:16 PM (GMT -6)   
I've been 6MP for 2 and a half years. Haven't noticed any side effects from it. I was afraid of getting a lot of colds from the lowered immune system, but I've actually gotten fewer colds than usual! It took a long time for the 6MP to kick in for me -- nearly 8 months. And while I haven't been in great shape this year, I think the 6MP keeps me from getting into an awful, terrible flare. So even though I'm not doing great, since I've been on 6MP, I have never been as bad as I was before.

I take 50 mg per day and I break the pills in half, taking half in the morning and half at night. I weigh 100 lbs. It took a year to get my blood work really back to perfect, but now it's stable.
-------
UC for the last ten years
Current Meds: 6MP since 2006, Cortifoam
Past Meds: You name it; I've tried it. (Asacol, Colazol, Pentasa, DiPentum, Rowasa, Canasa, Cortenema, sulfasalazine)
5ASA drugs don't work for me. Canasa seems to make me worse.
Alternative treatments I have had success with: Acupuncture, Hypnotherapy


Big Dog
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 62
   Posted 8/9/2008 11:14 AM (GMT -6)   
Piper-Chris:  Thanks for the info.  We've put our daughter down to 50 mg/day per Dr orders and her blood work (SED rate and CRP) are improving.  We had it done during her symptoms of 6MP overdose and the blood work is beginning to come down - drastically, yeah!  She has blood drawn every 2 weeks as well, though a CBC is done only monthly.  All the liver tests have come back normal, thankfully. 
 
Since starting the brand name 6MP her appetite has been gone.  Even on the half dose of 50 mg.  I'm concerned about that but grateful that the UC symptoms are still at bay.
 
The generic 6MP was called Mercaptepur while the brand name is Purinethol and the tablet says it on there along with "04A" on each one.  The Dr in LA says she hopes our daughter will metabolize the brand name better.  I was always under the impression that a generic is the same as the brand name.  According to her that's not the case.  Scary, huh?  We thought she was doiing fabulous on the generic as she's been symptom free for 4 months.  But I guess the blood work indicates that her body is less likely to absorb the meds thus less chance of continued remission.  Thus the switch to the brand name. 
 
Really concerned about the loss of appetite.  Down to .5 mg prednise daily.  Can it be chalked up to that or do any of you remember having appetite adjustments when switching to a new/different 6MP?  I'm worried it may be an early sign of starting a flare?  In the past her flares are instant joint pain - like totally swelled ankles and knees, and unable to walk.  Wheelchair for a couple of weeks until the prednisone would kick in then back to walking.  Also the instant diarrheal w/bloody mucus.  In the past there's been no easing into a flare - just a fast process.
Mother of 8 yo UC patient
20 mg prednisone daily
.5 mg prednisone daily
Asacol 6 pills daily
Lialda 3 pills daily
Prevacid
6MP generic
Purinethol brand name 6MP
Fish Oil, Probiotics, Immune System Boosters


Irish_Mom
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 385
   Posted 8/9/2008 4:55 PM (GMT -6)   

Our son started out on 50 mg of 6MP which was eventually raised to 100 mg daily. When he was on 100 mg, his liver went haywire so we had to back it down to 50 mg daily. He had the metabolite testing done through Prometheus which showed that the 50 mg was okay even though he should be on 100 mg for his weight.

He recently was put on Humira for AS, so he has had to go off the 6MP. He was cutdown to 25 mg daily for a week and then it was stopped altogether. So far so good.


Terri
 
_________________________________________________________________________________
Breast Cancer at 37; bilateral mastectomy with reconstruction.
Colon resection 2004; Sub-Total colectomy September 2007 for colonic inertia - didn't work.
Son with UC; taking Asacol and 6MP with Prednisone and Rowasa added during flareups. Recently diagnosed with ankylosing spondylitis - now on Humira.
Husband with ankylosing spondylitis and psoriatic arthritis.


Big Dog
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 62
   Posted 8/9/2008 5:14 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks Irish Mom! She's just been acting down in the dumps since she started the new 6MP. Prometheus also did her testing and on the generic 6MP her levels weren't where they wanted them. So we threw her on 100 mg of this new 6MP but have backed down to 50 mg since she got dizzy, light-headed, lethargic, kind of spacy, etc.

Leaving on a road trip tomorrow, hoping that she improves. Her UC symptoms are non-existent still.
Mother of 8 yo UC patient
20 mg prednisone daily
.5 mg prednisone daily
Asacol 6 pills daily
Lialda 3 pills daily
Prevacid
6MP generic
Purinethol brand name 6MP
Fish Oil, Probiotics, Immune System Boosters


Irish_Mom
Regular Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 385
   Posted 8/10/2008 1:20 AM (GMT -6)   

Big Dog

You're very welcome. My son was diagnosed at 16 and is now 21. I will say that ever since this all started; he is tired all the time. I never knew if it was the disease or the drugs. I'm thinking that it's a little bit of both.


Terri
 
_________________________________________________________________________________
Breast Cancer at 37; bilateral mastectomy with reconstruction.
Colon resection 2004; Sub-Total colectomy September 2007 for colonic inertia - didn't work.
Son with UC; taking Asacol and 6MP with Prednisone and Rowasa added during flareups. Recently diagnosed with ankylosing spondylitis - now on Humira. Canasa now added due to UP.
Husband with ankylosing spondylitis and psoriatic arthritis.

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