Remicad, Imuran or 6MP

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Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2009
Total Posts : 307
   Posted 2/12/2009 6:27 PM (GMT -6)   
So I met with my GI today, he said that based on my colonoscopy that I had on Jan. 26th things look a lot better then they did when i was first dx a few months back.  He mentioned that my colon is however like a volcano and could explode (start flaring) at anytime and even though i feel ok on the outside (only 1-2 BMS a day) that I'm not ok on the inside. 
Soooo he recmonded that i start a stronger med and he threw out Remicade, Imuran and 6MP.  His recomendation was to go with Remicade. 
Those of you who are taking Remicade, what are your thoughts about the medication?  Have you felt that it works? What about the side affects, I've heard that it could potentially cause cancer. 
Any answers would be extremely helpful.
Age: 25 / Male / Florida
Diagnosed: 11/08 / Pancolitis
Currently on Asacol 2 x 3 day (waiting for results)
Prednisone / ended 1/09 (started at 30mgs and tapered down)
Daily Green Tea, de-shelled sunflower seeds & spinach and 1 Multi Vitamin a day

Mamas Boys
Veteran Member

Date Joined Oct 2005
Total Posts : 1460
   Posted 2/12/2009 6:39 PM (GMT -6)   
I went on Remicade before Imuran beause it works faster and I was flaring pretty badly.  I've had great success with it.  My only side effects are that I am cold during the infusion and will sometimes get a headache.  And I am usually pretty tired for the next day or so.  After that - back to normal.  And when I say normal - I mean normal.  I am able to eat and do pretty much everything I was able to before my diagnosis.  As for the cancer side effect - my doctor assured me that it is minimal and I feel I just have to trust him.  Cuz staying in a constant flare with UC can also raise your risk for colon cancer.  So you have to weigh the pros and cons for yourself and decide which risk you are willing to live with.


Veteran Member

Date Joined Aug 2008
Total Posts : 5975
   Posted 2/13/2009 10:28 AM (GMT -6)   
     Why is he so anxious to start you on Remicade if you aren't having symptoms?  I fought my GI tooth and nail 1st against starting the 6MP, which I relented after having UC for five years.  Since the 6MP does NOT keep me out of flares he started pushing Remicade.  Well, I did my homework and found out Remicade is NOT an option for me since I was exposed to the TB virus back in the 60's while working in a hospital lab.  I don't have active TB nor am I contagious but the Remicade could activate the TB in my system and it could have fatal consequences.
     Another thing.  My neighbor works for the company which produces Remicade.  She has her doctorate in pharmacology and told me (which I knew anyways) that the company gives pretty hefty perks to doctors who push this drug.  So, not saying it won't work...but investigate other options.
62 yr old granny. South Jersey
Diagnosed with ulcerative proctitis in 1998 in hospital
Hospitalized (2nd time) in May 2008
Update 11/03/08...finally in remission!!  Hope I don't jinx myself.  Off the prednisone since 11/01/ see if I can stay off for longer than two weeks.  Other meds: 6MP (75 mgm), colazal (6 per day), Benicar and Toprol (high blood pressure meds), Probiotic (2 per day), fish oil capsule and multi-vitamin and calcium with vitamin D.

Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 94
   Posted 2/13/2009 11:40 AM (GMT -6)   
I agree with Christine, i am surprised your doctor is quick to jump right to Remicade, especially if you are not in a flare at the moment and are feeling somewhat ok.  My doctor wanted to try all options before Remicade and i have found that Imuran is doing the trick right now...knowing that i also have Remicade down the road if i ever need it...

First Diagnosed with Microscopic Colitis 10/07
Diagnosed with UC instead 3/2008
10mg Prednisone
50mg Imuran
75mg 6-MP
Calcium + Vit D
Entocort 9mg daily
800mg Asacol 3X daily

Regular Member

Date Joined Dec 2008
Total Posts : 74
   Posted 2/13/2009 1:15 PM (GMT -6)   
I'd go with the Imuran first.  I'm on both right now, and am currently trying to get over a nasty cold.  It takes a bit longer for me to get over things then when I wasn't on this stuff.  I eventually get well, but that is a very annoying side effect of medication that screws with your immune system.
Diagnosed '93. 
Asacol, Prednisone, Remicade, Imuran

Veteran Member

Date Joined Mar 2008
Total Posts : 2855
   Posted 2/13/2009 5:50 PM (GMT -6)   
There is something to be said about trying something strong while you are better.
Because you will live to flare another day. And then another, unfortunately.

I suppose it depends on how intolerable your flares are.
49 year old female attorney, diagnosed UC/pancolitis 1985, no surgery but much suffering.
Asacol/5ASA 6x400 mg maintenance for 20+ years; use prednisone & Rowasa for flares. 
August 2008 sought care of naturopathic doctor. Food sensitivity test showed wheat/gluten, other intolerances; started diet without gluten, soy, dairy, tomato etc. Replete$$ probiotic powder, then Forte, now a stronger one (50 billion). Doing much better, but still having some bad days. 

Veteran Member

Date Joined May 2006
Total Posts : 619
   Posted 2/13/2009 6:51 PM (GMT -6)   
I had a really bad reaction to the Imuran, and my GI said if I couldn't tolerate the Imuran 6MP probably wasn't an option for me. I was nervous about trying the Remicade, but it did the trick for me. I do worry about the cancer risk and at some point I will probably have the jpouch surgery, but now isn;t the time for me to take two months off to recover. The Remi is helping me put that off and lead a more or less normal life.
46 yr old female, dx'd UC April 27, 2006; mild arthritis in lower back, dx'd May 2008; Osteopenia dx'd 6/08 Finally achieved remission mid October 2008!!

13 Remicade infusions: 1st: 7/21/07; most recent: 1/21/09; Current meds & supplements: Lialda, 4 tabs in the morning; Xanax as needed (rarely); Rowesa and/or Canasa; multivitamin w/folate; Culturelle; Fish oil capsules, calcium chews and/or Tums; Vitamin D;

Past meds: Prednisone 4/06-4/08; Entocourt EC; Asacol; Colazal; Venofer (iron) injections Dec '07; Imuran (extremely bad reaction 2/07); Protonix; Lexipro

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