Methotrexate - Yes or No?

Posted , 4 users are following.

Hello

I stumbled across this forum whilst looking for information about Methotrexate.

I have suffered from Psoriatic Athritis for many years, having Steroid injections in my early 20's etc. I am now 38 and see a consultant at my local hospital.

I have been taking Sulphasalazine for about 18 months now, but this doesn't seem to be having any effect.

Another one of my joints has now been attacked and I cannot straighten yet another one of my limbs because of the swelling and pain etc. and on a recent visit to see the consultant, he has suggested that I continue with Sulphasalazine, but also start to take Methotrexate.

Having read some of the comments in this forum, I am now scared to death and am very unsure what to do.

Is it worth the (seemingly) horrific side effects that some of you have had.

Any advice would be very much appreciated, as I go back to see the nurse next week so that she can advise me of what happens next and it would be helpful to be armed with some advice.

Kind regards

Melanie

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8 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi

    Can you let me know what kind of response you got back about Methotrexate?

    My Rheumatologist has been trying to get me onto it for about 4 years now (I have Rheumatoid arthritis) - but I hadn't decided I was finished having children!!!!! My RA is so bad now that I couldn't even contemplate having another baby as I wouldn't be able to care for it properly! And I know there is no chance I could ever try to become pregnant whilst on Methotrexate!!

    I am soooooo unhappy as my condition is very active at the mo - I feel soo down and I think i have no other option but to at least try Methotrexate - but I have so many reservations about it.

    Please let me know of any good and BAD experiences you have heard of!

    Hope you are keeping well - regards.

    Clare x

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  • Posted

    I have taken a high dose of Methotraxate for a few years and it has helped control my RA particularly in my knees. I have had surgery on both knees and steroid injections, for the past year I have been OK and put this down to the methotraxate. Make sure you have regular blood tests and take folic acid on the other days that you don't take the methotraxate if that is what is prescribed.

    My RA was good while I was pregnant, obviously I was not on methotraxate at the time. Somehow the changes in my body and a different hormone balance seemed to work well. However the RA came back afterwards and I was in a lot of pain. Somehow with a baby you cope, and it is always worth it!

    I have recently been prescribed slow release diclofenac and this has helped a lot, I also take high dose omega 3.6 and 9 - don't know if this helps but I don't think it harms.

    Good luck, Claire 13454

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  • Posted

    Melanie

    I have posted here before giving my experience of Methotrexate, and how it blighted my life and health. I still have no reason to regret my decision to change back to slow release Diclofenac to control my Psoriatic Arthritis. Overall, my life is better without it, and the dire warnings I was given about possible joint erosion have not proved to be true. I am also free of worries about starting a family and possible premature menopause.

    If your Rheumatologist is determined that you must be prescribed a DMARD (this seems to be automatic these days), ask about Biologic DMARDS instead. These are more expensive, so not so popular with the NHS, but don't seem to have the Methotrexate risks for women.

    Good luck

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  • Posted

    [b:eb0ed3a521][u:eb0ed3a521]Correction[/u:eb0ed3a521][/b:eb0ed3a521]

    I see that in fact Biologics are still being assessed for their safety and effects on pregnancy, and contraception is advised.

    Since there seems to be no way to edit postings here, I have posted again.

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  • Posted

    Hi

    I was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritus in Feb this year and was instantly prescribed methotrexate with Folic Acid, I satrted on 7.5mg and have had it increased over the months until my current dose of 20mg. When my consultant informed me he was going to prescribe me methotrexate and explained the possible side effects I was mortified especially since I am only 28yrs old. My whole life flashed before me and I felt choices were being taken away from me. Fortunatley I have experienced no side effects from the meds but unfortunately it isn't controlling the disease as well as hoped and changes in meds are already being discussed. Sadly I think the only way of knowing is trial and error and talkign through any concerns you have with the medics (providing you have medics who are person centered)

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  • Posted

    I was diagnosed with Psoriatic Arthritis and Psoriasis 21 years ago (I was 27) . I have been on all the ususal anti inflammatry drugs over the years as well as salozapyrin (sp?)for 4 years. While only the last worked for a while, I went through the ususal hell while my son was young (and refusing to go onto methotextrate for all the nasty things I had heard about it). I eventually went on MTX 8 years ago and it has been great. It was not a cure all, but I have had no side effects, can not believe why I didnt go on it earlier. I went from hell to having a life agian- being able to walk and work etc. While I still had a few bad days when I did too much of the wrong thing that agravates my arthritis it has worked well. After 8 years, it has recently 6 months ago started to be less effective. My specialist suggested I cut back and see if it is working at all. Was that a shock- I forgot how bad my arthritis could be! I went back up to my full dose 25mg per week and he started me on Humira (biologic) as well. In combination these are meant to be better than either on it own. Well I am now nearly 48 (I think I am still 23!) and Humira is my new wonderdrug. So my advice- sometimes you get so bad that life isnt worth living, that you just have to go for it and try what is suggested. You can always stop (under medical supervision) but you wont know how much better life can be unless you give it a go. Quality not quantity!

    cheers

    Sue H

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  • Posted

    I was diagnosed with Psoratic Arthritis in September this year. I was immediately put on methotrexate 10mg a week. I am female and only 23 and am worried about the long term effects on my fertility... has anyone here been on the methotrexate and then come off of it to have a baby successfully?
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  • Posted

    Has anyone considered an alternative treatment? I am on the Margeret Hills acid-free diet (they have a website). I have been on it for 8 months. I'm 50 and I've had psoriasis since age 15 but started getting psoriatic arthritis about 5 years ago. I was referred to a rheumatologist about 3 years ago and he wanted me to take sulphasalazine (SSZ). I resisted for several months but finally gave in. However, whilst I was on it, I got gradually worse. The arthritis originally affected my ankles but before long my knees swelled up and had to be drained and injected with steroid 8 times within a year. I developed more swollen joints and was having difficulty sleeping, soaking my bed with night sweats. I couldn't bear to stand in the mornings and had to hang onto furniture to get to the loo. I was so ill that they began to wonder if I had something else as well - so I was investigated for lymphoma and TB (both negative fortunately). At the peak of this illness, after 8 months of SSZ, my CRP was 149mg (normal range 0-5mg in a healthy person). Three months later I discovered the Margaret Hills approach and a month later took myself off SSZ. This has infuriated my rheumatologist, who is trying to persuade me to take methotrexate now. After 8 months on the acid-free diet,z92 my CRP has gradually dropped to 11mg (better than it has been for 2 years) and swelling in my joints has reduced. Anaemia I developed while on SSZ has also improved. I am looking forward to further improvement in my joints as I am otherwise feeling well.
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