New biological drug

Edited , 7 users are following.

Anyone out there been on tocilimab or abatacept, after being on embrol for about 8 years , ( wonder drug for me ) my consultant decided it would work better with methotrexate, something I had been on many times but found I could not tolerate very well, sickness , fatigue and generally feeling YUK. So in her wisdom, she doubled my methotrexate dose to 15 mg per week as well as the embrol, which put me in hospital with bi lateral pnemonitis. In for 8 days, thought I was dying.  After taking me off all meds whilst waiting to see respiratory consultant, this has been since early July, she has put me on predisnone, decreasing dose. Am in agony. Just had letter from resp consultant naming methotrexate as cause of lung problems, maybe on its own or in conjunction with embrol, so he has advised that I do not go back on any of these drugs. He has suggested abatacept, or tocilimab( don't know if I have spelled that correctly) brain freeze today, so much pain! Embrol worked immediately for me, I just home one of these drugs will too. Any comments or advise greatly appreciated. Had RA for 30 years, so no stranger to this condition. 

1 like, 10 replies

Report / Delete

10 Replies

  • Edited

    Hi Carole, I have tried both Tocilicept mab and Abatacept.  Toc worked well for me for about 18 months and I was really quite well, then is just stopped working.  I went onto subcutaneous injections with it and whether it was that that changed I dont really know.  Abatacept was also great for about a year, then I changed to subcut... well I should know better right... it wasnt so effective and I had cold sores all the tie and some fatigue.  Now I am back on Abatacept but infusions monthly... I have major fatigue at the moment, almost think it is just too much for me.  Last month I had it at 6 week interval and I was good for the last 3 weeks of that.  I am going to see whether I can have mine 6 weekly or reduce the dose.  Either or was a good drug though, worth a try.  Sad that it is trial and error until we get some genetic testing or assay to tell us whether a particular drug will work on our particular RA.... its just a lottery Im afraid.  Hope it works for you    All the best to you

    Theresa

     

    Report / Delete Reply
    • Edited

      Thank you treezsh for your comments, I am a little afraid at present as not sure what or if I have damage to my lungs, but if I had my way, I would go back on embrol, It worked so well for me. Will know Tuesday what the outcome will be, as have to see rheum consultant. I have to say I do not have much faith in her, had her only 2 years after long time consultant retired. He was marvellous, and would always fit me in for joint injections when I was having major flares. Took me 5 weeks last year, to even get to see my new consultant, all the time in pain. At present I have large ruptured bakers cyst affecting my knee, calf, leg. So painful, had it for almost 5 weeks, and have asked to see doc, but no joy. Anyway, thank you once again for your comments. Take care
      Report / Delete Reply
  • Edited

    Hi Carole, were your symptoms not being controlled for your Rheumy to increase your methotrexate? If it's not broke why mend it! I too have had problems with Methotrexate including fibrosis and pneumonitis / chest infection and under the care of a Respiratory consultant. I was on 10mgs. and Etanercept. I was also treated with prednisolone while these were stopped. I eventually restarted the Etanercept with a decreasing steroid regime. The Etanercept made a big difference but 'missed' the methotrexate. Things are not too bad but the joints become more painful with every decrease then seem to settle. I've agreed with the Rheumy and my GP to reduce the steroids as slowly and gradually as necessary. I'm also taking bone protection. I'm just a bit concerned now in case my Rheumy wants to swap mine. Are you possibly reducing your steroids too quickly? Hope you get some relief soon. Carol x

    Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      hi carol, my rheumatoid consultant increased my methotrexate even though I had said it made me sick, when I checked back through my medical notes( I paid for these after my DLA was taken off me, and I was refused PiP) it clearly stated that I could not tolerate high doses of methotrexate, obviously she did not read my notes.  I have had this consultant about 2 years, as I have said in my reply to treezsh, I was on 15mgs methotrexate and the etanercept.  I am still on 15mg prednisolone, should be decreasing, but flaring badly so have continued on this dose. This has side effects of me not being able to sleep.  I either cannot get off to sleep, lying awake till 3-4 in the morning, or I wake at about 2.30-3 and am wide awake.  Also stomach problems, acid.  Was given omeprazole but that gave me stomach cramps and running to loo, sickness. This has now been changed to  lanzaparole. So am keen to get on to biological, and hope it works. Thanks for your comments, take care
      Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    Definitely need more research. I know it is but it  shouldn't just be down to trial and error.  I'm pinning my hopes on the futuristic biomedical device but I may be in for a long wait! LOL

    Best wishes to you both. Carol 

    Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    Hi Carole, I on a biological Benepali works great no side effects, not been on the ones you said, on methotrexate for a week sometime back ended up in A and E terrible gut problems.
    Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    Hi Carole

         What you went thru sounds terrible       So sorry that the rheum decided to add MTX.     The studies have shown that the biologic and the MTX work well together and perhaps would prevent the biologic from all of a sudden no longer working.   But sadly not in your case

         Hopefully one of the 2 drugs you mentioned will work well for you.  It's awful that's it's trial and error on these drugs.   I was on Humira and had awful side effects so was leary to start Cimzia as it is in the same class of TNF blockers according to my doctor.  But it's working

         Luckily my husband still works or I would not be able to afford it but we have employee insurance and also Cimzia company pays the cost for a certain period

    Next year we will have to go on Medicare (I live in US) and then the drug cost skyrockets to something unaffordable.   So one day at a  time

       I wish you the best on your ned medication and I hope it works as well as embral did

    Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    Hi everyone.

    my name is Amy. I'm 40 and I have never used a site like this before so it's all abit new for me. I am really hoping for some feedback from people in a similar situation.

    I was diagnosed with RA CCP positive antibody 6 years ago and medicated on Hydroxychlorine. my RA has gotten worse and I often have steroid injections. for the last 8 months ivd been on 15mg of methotrexate or which I hate, cant tolerate well and am seeing effects of hair thinning and the usual sickness. my consultant has just told me that I need biological medication and I am really unsure and worried. any advise? thank you.

    Report / Delete Reply

Join this discussion or start a new one?

New discussion Reply

Report or request deletion

Thanks for your help!

We want the forums to be a useful resource for our users but it is important to remember that the forums are not moderated or reviewed by doctors and so you should not rely on opinions or advice given by other users in respect of any healthcare matters. Always speak to your doctor before acting and in cases of emergency seek appropriate medical assistance immediately. Use of the forums is subject to our Terms of Use and Privacy Policy and steps will be taken to remove posts identified as being in breach of those terms.

newnav-down newnav-up