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ediekristen
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 1366
   Posted Yesterday 9:48 AM (GMT -7)   
I had recently called my doctor's office to ask them about Lialda (before I found out it is way too expensive) and at the same time I asked the nurse if I could possibly try the Rowasa enemas or something of the sort. She told me that they wouldn't put me on it or that I wouldn't want to be on them because they contain steroids like prednisone. I thought that some of the foam enemas are actually used as maintenance medication?
I've tried the suppositories before but I hated them- they didn't make any bit of difference and instead just made me really gassy and bloated.
 
This just sounded strange to me... Are any of you using the enemas for maintenance or just to control a flare?? It seems usually when I'm feeling better the main part that is always inflamed is the lower end (though I do have pancolitis) so I thought that maybe the enemas would help.
Female, 22, Ulcerative colitis (pancolitis) since 1999; GERD; gastritis; osteopenia in hip & lumbar region of spine from long term prednisone use

Current Meds:
40 mg Citalopram (for depression/social anxiety)
125mg Imuran
 
Should also be on supplements and probiotics and other UC drugs but I'm just not good at taking pills...


expecting226
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 402
   Posted Yesterday 11:23 AM (GMT -7)   
I use Rowasa enemas and have for several years. They are mesalamine. They do not contain steroids. I use them during flare-ups and as a maintenance medication during remission. I believe they are one of the best tools to help me keep my remission.

There are enemas and foams that do contain steroids, but Rowasa is not one of them.
Current Medications:
- Asacol (4 pills, 3x per day)
- Rowasa (1 enema daily, as needed)
- Folic Acid (1 mg, 1x per day)
- Calcium (600 mg, 2x per day)
- Prenatal Vitamin (1x per day)
- Iron (2x per day)


lemonhead
Veteran Member


Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 1028
   Posted Yesterday 11:45 AM (GMT -7)   
I use Rowasa enemas every night, and I do 2 a days when I have flares.  They work like a charm for me.  If I see any blood, I take an enema, and the next day it is gone.  The only bad thing about them is they seem to make me a little gassy and for about 10 minutes after I take it, I am really uncomfortable, but that goes away.  Good luck.
diagnosed with left-sided UC in 1997.
Currently on 10mg Prednisone
12 caps of colazal
rowasa enema nightly
35 years old, white, female


elnino22
New Member


Date Joined Dec 2007
Total Posts : 6
   Posted Yesterday 11:56 AM (GMT -7)   
when using enemas did you find that your UC symptoms incresased then decreased with use??

pb4
Elite Member


Date Joined Feb 2004
Total Posts : 20577
   Posted Yesterday 12:31 PM (GMT -7)   
I've been on cortifoam steroid foam enema for as long as a yr before tappering...once things clear up then I wean off, if they start up again, I literally nip it in the butt and get it before it gets too out of control.

It works well for me, I highly recommend it...key is getting on it before the proctitis gets out of control too much then you won't likely have to be on it as long.

:)
My bum is broken....there's a big crack down the middle of it!  LOL  :)


Red_34
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 23549
   Posted Yesterday 1:13 PM (GMT -7)   
Not all GI nurses are that knowledgable when it comes to medications. You have to be your own advocate sometimes. Rowasa is strictly a 5-ASA - Asacol in liquid form. It contains no steroids whatsoever. And yes, Rowasa can be used as a maintenance medication to help keep your flares at bay. If you are looking for a rectal med to take care of the flare quickly - I highly suggest the Colocorts instead of the foam since it's a liquid and will reach higher up then the foam. If you are only flaring rectally then yes the foam can be great. Rowasa is a bit slower to jump into action but it's a lot healthier on your body then a steroid. Steroids should only be used for short term courses to get flares under control. But my GI has said he has had some of his patients on either Rowasa or Canasa for years with no complications.
 @--->--SHERRY--<---@
@--->--Moderator for Allergies/Asthma and Co-moderator for UC--<---@
~Left sided Uc -'92 - Colazal (9 daily), 6mp (50-100mgs), Prilosec, Biotin, Forvia, Pro-Bio**Unable to tolerate Asacol, Rowasa or Canasa** ~Allergies -Singulair
~Secondary Reynauds Syndrome - '04 - Norvasc~Fibromyalgia - '06~
To help Healingwell - click here: DONATE
http://www.myspace.com/82595818
                       "The quality of my life depends on the quality of my thoughts."
 
 
 
 

 
 


julee70
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2007
Total Posts : 486
   Posted Yesterday 1:14 PM (GMT -7)   
Your doctor's nurse is wrong. Rowasa is not a steroid enema. You can use it safely forever as a maintenance drug. I'd call back and ask for the doctor and let the doctor know that the nurse is giving out wrong "information" and making choices about your treatment that should be made by the doctor.

There IS a steroid enema and there also is a steroid rectal foam. Both are great for controlling flares. Like pb4 said, you can use them for a while without problems and taper off when the flare is under control.
-------
UC for the last ten years
Current Meds: 6MP
Past Meds: You name it; I've tried it.


quincy
Elite Member


Date Joined May 2003
Total Posts : 29852
   Posted Yesterday 1:41 PM (GMT -7)   
Since we all agree the nurse/receptionist/assistant knows diddly....call the doctor's office and request the Rowasa AGAIN..sheesh.

Even if the Rowasa wasn't enough, the steroid enemas (liquid or foam) are still good for a booster if needed....but use them firstly. Make sure you get refills...enough for 2 months...which would be 6 - 8 refills. since there's 7 in a box.

Let us know the outcome.

quincy
*Heather*Status:mini flare June 23* 6asacol daily+ Salofalk (tapered every 4th night)
~diagnosed January 1989 UC (proctosigmoiditis)
~5ASA: Asacol + Salofalk enemas (increase for flares tapered to maintenance)
~Bentylol (dicyclomine) 20mg as needed
~vitamins/minerals 
~Probiotic 2 (Natural Factors Protec) + 1 (Primadophilus Reuteri) at bedtime
~Natural Factors Multi Digestive Enzymes with supper
~Ranitidine,Pariet (reflux) Effexor XR 75mg;  Pulmicort/Airomir (asthma)
~URSO for PSC (or PBC) 500mg X 2 daily (LFTs back to NORMAL!!)
My doc's logic.. "TREAT (FROM)BOTH ENDS"  worth it !!!


ediekristen
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 1366
   Posted Yesterday 2:18 PM (GMT -7)   
Thanks everyone!
I have an appointment on the 18th with my doctor so I will just speak with him directly about it... He really wants me taking Asacol so I figured he'd be all about Rowasa.

So, when you fill the prescription you get 7 and then have to get new ones every week?
Female, 22, Ulcerative colitis (pancolitis) since 1999; GERD; gastritis; osteopenia in hip & lumbar region of spine from long term prednisone use

Current Meds:
40 mg Citalopram (for depression/social anxiety)
125mg Imuran
 
Should also be on supplements and probiotics and other UC drugs but I'm just not good at taking pills...


Red_34
Forum Moderator


Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 23549
   Posted Yesterday 2:26 PM (GMT -7)   
No, usually they give you a month supply (4 boxes) so be prepared to walk out of the pharmacy with large bags! :)
 @--->--SHERRY--<---@
@--->--Moderator for Allergies/Asthma and Co-moderator for UC--<---@
~Left sided Uc -'92 - Colazal (9 daily), 6mp (50-100mgs), Prilosec, Biotin, Forvia, Pro-Bio**Unable to tolerate Asacol, Rowasa or Canasa** ~Allergies -Singulair
~Secondary Reynauds Syndrome - '04 - Norvasc~Fibromyalgia - '06~
To help Healingwell - click here: DONATE
http://www.myspace.com/82595818
                       "The quality of my life depends on the quality of my thoughts."
 
 
 
 

 
 


expecting226
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2007
Total Posts : 402
   Posted Yesterday 2:38 PM (GMT -7)   
I do my prescriptions through my insurance's mail order pharmacy because it is a lot cheaper, so I get a 90 day supply at a time.  Those boxes take up an entire shelf in my linen closet! 
 
I have never seen an increase in my symptoms with the Rowasa.  I have, from time to time, tried to take a hiatus from them, and whenever I go back on them, my rectal symptoms immediately begin to subside.  They have always offered virtually instant relief for me.
Current Medications:
- Asacol (4 pills, 3x per day)
- Rowasa (1 enema daily, as needed)
- Folic Acid (1 mg, 1x per day)
- Calcium (600 mg, 2x per day)
- Prenatal Vitamin (1x per day)
- Iron (2x per day)


gaff
Regular Member


Date Joined Jul 2006
Total Posts : 442
   Posted Yesterday 3:03 PM (GMT -7)   
No steroids in Rowasa, it works wonders for me!
gaff
left-sided UC since 11/05
 Rowasa, Colazal, Calcium, Centrum
Natren Healthy Trinity Probiotics


#1Chloe
Regular Member


Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 20
   Posted Yesterday 4:52 PM (GMT -7)   
We are not sure if it is working or not but my 62 year old husband is to have a flex sigmoid to-morrow ( same DR who did the colonoscopy Nov2 and made UC diagnosis).. so we will see if there is any change to the ulcerations as there is no change or improvement in him at all . He is also on 80 mg of prednisone and now this week Lialda too... It is thought he may be "steroid refractory" so i hope they can try another drug.


HOWEVER I wanted to emphasize as others did before me that the generic Rowasa is not nearly as good as the brand. I do not mean the medication is different: it probably is the same BUT the applicator is so different.................. the generic bottle is stiff and very hard therefore difficult to deliver all the medication in.. FYI anyway... just our 2 cents.....

Chloe
Prednisone 50 mg
Rowesa at night
Husband diagnosed Ulcerative Colitis Nov 2 07


Sara14
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2007
Total Posts : 4034
   Posted Yesterday 8:42 PM (GMT -7)   
I get a 2-week supply every time I pick up my Rowasa (2 boxes). I think it just depends how your doctor writes out the prescription. I wish mine had written it out for a month's worth, b/c it was a pain going in every two weeks when I was using them daily. I would definitely tell your doctor that his nurse is giving out wrong information.
23 years old
Diagnosed with UC March 2007
Current inflamation in the rectum
Asacol 4 tablets 3x/day
Rowasa (generic) - as needed for flares
Nature's Way Primadophilus Reuteri 1/day; Chewable multivitamin; Metamucil; Viactiv (Calcium and Vit. D) for Osteopenia; flaxseed


Old Hat
Veteran Member


Date Joined Feb 2007
Total Posts : 5135
   Posted Today 9:21 AM (GMT -7)   
I wouldn't say that one "could stay on Rowasa safely forever" because it's unlikely that any med is safe "forever"! The body changes over time even with normal aging so its maintenance needs change, too. However, Rowasa is indeed a helpful 5-ASA for treatment of left-sided UC inflammation. It is slower-acting than the steroid enemas, but safer to use over time. Have a look at my earlier post "New Online IBD Article Summarizes Current Medical Treatment Options"-- the 1st part discusses UC & types of 5-ASAs & what they can be expected to do. Maybe you can print out a copy for your doctor & his nurse! / Old Hat (nearly 30 yrs with left-sided UC; currently on 3 Colazal daily; seem to be back in remission)

julee70
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2007
Total Posts : 486
   Posted Today 9:28 AM (GMT -7)   
Thanks, Old Hat. I think you're right. I think that I've had a doctor tell me that long term use of Rowasa was perfectly safe, which then got translated in my brain as "forever" and "for the rest of your life"! I suppose that's how I hear everything related to UC sometimes. :)
-------
UC for the last ten years
Current Meds: 6MP
Past Meds: You name it; I've tried it.


quincy
Elite Member


Date Joined May 2003
Total Posts : 29852
   Posted Today 1:06 PM (GMT -7)   
Forever doesn't mean nightly forever....tapering, finding maintenance, using suppositories if you taper off the enemas for maintenance are also regimen. They also come in a 2 gram dosage....so, right there lowers the dosage. The foam comes in 1000 mg I think...so, that's lower still, but it's not available everywhere which is a shame.

You have options...learn how they can work for you.


quincy
*Heather*Status:mini flare June 23* 6asacol daily+ Salofalk (tapered every 4th night)
~diagnosed January 1989 UC (proctosigmoiditis)
~5ASA: Asacol + Salofalk enemas (increase for flares tapered to maintenance)
~Bentylol (dicyclomine) 20mg as needed
~vitamins/minerals 
~Probiotic 2 (Natural Factors Protec) + 1 (Primadophilus Reuteri) at bedtime
~Natural Factors Multi Digestive Enzymes with supper
~Ranitidine,Pariet (reflux) Effexor XR 75mg;  Pulmicort/Airomir (asthma)
~URSO for PSC (or PBC) 500mg X 2 daily (LFTs back to NORMAL!!)
My doc's logic.. "TREAT (FROM)BOTH ENDS"  worth it !!!


barnsbury
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 464
   Posted 12/14/2007 5:51 AM (GMT -7)   

PB4 - You say you were on steroid foam enemas for a long time. Did you get any of the usual steroid side effects from them?  Did you get a puffy face?

I am now back on predfoam steroid enema as the bleeding has returned. 

Thanks


Back on Pred - 6mg - Steroid Dependent :-(
Azathioprine 125mg
Actonel 35mg
Predfoam Enema
EPA Fish Oils
Various Homeopathic meds
Asacol x 9
Remicade every 8 weeks  (Stopped working)
Aloe Vera Lily of the Desert Juice  Gave me the worst D !
Primadophilus Reuteri Probiotic
 


Another UC wife
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 2111
   Posted 12/14/2007 6:27 AM (GMT -7)   
This thread has me wondering....so how long is too long then? I ask this as the colocourt ones were too difficult for hubby to retain - one to two hours max and they really did not seem to do that much after the initial benefit derived from it.

Mayo took him off those that our local GI prescribed and he is using cortifoam at night and canasa in the morning. Some nights he will skip the cortifoam but for the most part he is using it on the average 5 times per week at night. It is SOOOOOOOOOOO much easier to adminster, tolerate and the benefits for him seemed to really help big time. Since the discomfort and problems now seem to be in the real lower end of things we assumed the enemas are what does and will make the difference.

It has been discussed about tapering off the pain meds first then the enemas. We see the Dr at Mayo in about 4 months. We see our local GI every month for local monitoring.

Waiting on a lab test to check his cortisol level as he is about to stop his 2 1/2 mg of prednisone in a few days if all goes well. May he be able to not only get off it but stay off it for a good long while.

Is the Rowasa similar to the colocourt in size and liquid content?

61 yr old male~Colitis 1st diagnosed Jan '05-cleared up within a few wks. Flared again in May '06 (now UC) & hospitalized 5/07-currently heading towards a remission. Osteopena of spine from prednisone DX 8/07  Oct 07 feeling quite normal most days.  150mg Imuran 2 1/2 mg prednisone & tapering, 12 Asacol, Lidocaine Hydrochloride Jelly 2%,multi vitamin, iron 1X day, DanActive, chewable calcium, Prilosec 20mg, enalapril 10mg, glipizide 5 mg, zocor 40 mg, baby aspirin, (Fentanyl pain patch 50mg 72 hrs  Morphine Sulf 15 mg twice daily)Cortifoam enema PM, Canasa suppositiry AM, folic acid 1mg, Fosamax 1x month


barnsbury
Regular Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 464
   Posted 12/14/2007 8:16 AM (GMT -7)   

AnotherUCWife - I'm not sure of the answer to your question about the enemas as we have different names for them in England.  But I think Rowasa is a liquid enema similar to the predsol steroid liquid enema. Similar size too.  I have never been able to retain liquid enemas in. Not even for 5 minutes. They are a nightmare for me. So, I am sticking to predfoam.

I see your husband is on 2.5mg of pred and is planning on stopping it.  I would STRONGLY recommend that he doesn't do this.  I always flare at this point.  I advise you to get 1mg tablets and stay on 1mg for at least a month before stopping completely. It might not sound like much but it will make all the difference. Especially if he has been on steroids for a long time.

Take care
Back on Pred - 6mg - Steroid Dependent :-(
Azathioprine 125mg
Actonel 35mg
Predfoam Enema
EPA Fish Oils
Various Homeopathic meds
Asacol x 9
Remicade every 8 weeks  (Stopped working)
Aloe Vera Lily of the Desert Juice  Gave me the worst D !
Primadophilus Reuteri Probiotic
 


Another UC wife
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 2111
   Posted 12/14/2007 12:58 PM (GMT -7)   
Thank you KSU for your info......this has been discussed at length with both doctors.  What is so different with this taper is that it has been a much longer and slower one.  Unlike the other 2 times he was put on it, the tapering was too quick and the mgs always went from 60,50,40 etc. and when he got to 20 or 10 mgs wham....not so this time.
 
This time when it got to 20 mgs the tapers were by 2 1/2 mgs and not the 10 mgs as in the past and he seems to be doing ok this time -- the 150 mg of Imuran seems to have made the difference also when it finally started to kick in making him less reliant on the prednisone or so we think.  This round began at 40 mgs in Mid May when the Imuran was started so hopefully (fingers crossed) he is heading in the right direction.  He is not exhibiting the usual flaring type behaviour when he tried tapering twice before so I pray this is the right time.
 
 
 
 

61 yr old male~Colitis 1st diagnosed Jan '05-cleared up within a few wks. Flared again in May '06 (now UC) & hospitalized 5/07-currently heading towards a remission. Osteopena of spine from prednisone DX 8/07  Oct 07 feeling quite normal most days.  150mg Imuran 2 1/2 mg prednisone & tapering, 12 Asacol, Lidocaine Hydrochloride Jelly 2%,multi vitamin, iron 1X day, DanActive, chewable calcium, Prilosec 20mg, enalapril 10mg, glipizide 5 mg, zocor 40 mg, baby aspirin, (Fentanyl pain patch 50mg 72 hrs  Morphine Sulf 15 mg twice daily)Cortifoam enema PM, Canasa suppositiry AM, folic acid 1mg, Fosamax 1x month


TheLori
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2007
Total Posts : 277
   Posted 12/15/2007 6:11 AM (GMT -7)   
Ive been using rowassa enemas for 5 nights, stopped the bleeding, I went last night without one, and i had blood this morning! grr!
Lori
37/F
UC diagnosed 1991
Asacal, zoloft,levoxyl, prednisone 60,50,40,30, 25,20,15,10,5, 0!!!!!!!!


quincy
Elite Member


Date Joined May 2003
Total Posts : 29852
   Posted 12/15/2007 10:27 AM (GMT -7)   
Lori...that's great you've seen improvement from the enemas...but they should be used for a minimum of at least 2 - 3 weeks nightly. then taper from there....you're on your way!!! WooHoo!

q
*Heather*Status:mini flare June 23* 6asacol daily+ Salofalk (tapered every 4th night)
~diagnosed January 1989 UC (proctosigmoiditis)
~5ASA: Asacol + Salofalk enemas (increase for flares tapered to maintenance)
~Bentylol (dicyclomine) 20mg as needed
~vitamins/minerals 
~Probiotic 2 (Natural Factors Protec) + 1 (Primadophilus Reuteri) at bedtime
~Natural Factors Multi Digestive Enzymes with supper
~Ranitidine,Pariet (reflux) Effexor XR 75mg;  Pulmicort/Airomir (asthma)
~URSO for PSC (or PBC) 500mg X 2 daily (LFTs back to NORMAL!!)
My doc's logic.. "TREAT (FROM)BOTH ENDS"  worth it !!!

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