Rash while on a biologic

Posted , 9 users are following.

Hi all, I am on Methotrexate ( 10 mg.) every week and Oriencia infusions every month.  I have been on MTX for 4 years and Oriencia for a little over a year.  Several months ago I noticed that my finger tips were starting to peel and my hands seemed to be extremely dry.  Then the next thing that I noticed was little tiny red itchy bumps on my palms and if I used steroid cream they would go away.  I saw my dermatologist and he said that I washed my hands too much and to start using lots of hand cream.  Several weeks later I noticed a very fine rash on the upper part of my legs, upper part of my arms but it did not itch. I went to see my GP and he said it was Ecxema and start using creams for Excema.  I mentioned this to my Rummy but she didn’t say anything.  I decided to see an allergist but he didn’t have any answer and said I should go back to the dermatologist and my Rheumatologist. I have an appointment with the dermatologist this Thursday but cannot get in to see the Rummy.  Has anybody that is on or has been on a biological drug for RA had a problem with a rash or has developed Excema?  

 

0 likes, 14 replies

Report / Delete

14 Replies

  • Posted

    I have been on Methotrexate 25mgs for approx 4 years along with Roactemra inj and hydroxychloroquine tabs daily. I have the dry patches at the end of my fingers - as if I play a guitar - but have never been seen by a dermatologist and my Rheumatology specialist nurse doesn't seem too concerned. I just use hand cream when I remember but will be following your post as I am interested to see if there is anyone who knows what is going on. I hope you get an answer xxx

    Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    I have been on Methotrexate and hydroxychloroquine for six months and am doing very well except for dry cracking hands and fingers that become numb with the slightest cold temperature and feel almost how I would imagine frost bite would be, this is a problem living in Canada in -25c just now, and I am a guitarist. ... I know I am to blame for the dryness of my hands because they become itchy and I scratch them with my nails especially in my sleep,  my relief for this itchiness is to run my hands under the hot water tap at the hottest bearable temperature,  the sensation is almost orgasmic,  the only way to accurately describe it.  The proper way to deal with my hand condition is to wash my hands less and regularly use a prescribed hand lotion.
    Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    Hi .. I'm same. Been on methotrexate for years and inflectra for nearly 2 years ...i have dry cracked itchy fingers that get really sore

    Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    I have eczema and it doesn't sound the same as the rash you describe. When it flares up it is red, raised and warm to the touch - like inflamed skin and burns. It doesn't get bumpy. This sounds more like some kind of allergic reaction to a med to me. Seems like they should analyze it a little better before tossing out a diagnosis. Just my opinion. Good luck, hope they get to the bottom of it for you. Rashes are pretty tough to diagnose I guess.

    Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    I really can't help you and I'm sorry but I had to say that I am frustrated with your doctors. It sounds like your doctors are passing the buck and you're the one suffering.

    Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    I so appreciate all of you that have replied to my problem.   I did get a call from my doctors office and she wants to see me next Tuesday, the 9th.  She also mentioned that it could be Pustular psoriasis, and that it could be because I am on a biologic and we could try lowering the dose but then the drug may not work as well. Since I am seeing the dermatologist tomorrow I will ask him if he thinks it’s Pustular psoriasis and will post again tomorrow.  All of you all are angels. 

     

    Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    Hello again, I saw the dermatologist today and he said that I have 2 different rashes but it is not Eczema or Psoriasis, he told me to use a steroid cream and he thinks it will go away.  As far as the little red bumps on my hands he did a biopsy on one of them and I should get the results next week, so it’s good to know that I do not have Eczema or Psoriasis but now I am worried about what is causing them. He is a really good doctor and he is an hour from where I live but it’s worth the drive. Thanks again for all your help and encouraging messages.
    Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    I had peeling skin on my hands with Enbrel. I didn't make the connection until now. 

    Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    I too take methotrexate. I was on Humira and it was extremely effective, but after about a year and a half I began to get a rash. Rheumatologist sent me to a dermatologist who thought might be eczema because of a strong history of allergies. It didn't clear up with treatment, so dermatologist thought it was psoriasis, which it was, and was actually a side effect (apparently a not uncommon side effect of Humira, which is ironical since Humira is also used to treat some forms of psoriasis). Rheumatologist changed me to Simponee, and rash very,very slowly began to clear up. I still have some vestiges of it after about 17 months.

    So, I'd push the point a bit with your rheumatologist,because some of these medicines do have side effects,and something else can be substituted.

    Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    Sorry,should have read further before replying.
    Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Thank you for answering.  I had a little blister on my hand and the dermatologist did a biopsy and it came back as Psoriasis.  I have this rash everywhere.  My Rheumatologist just told me to take more Methotrexate. I will be seeing her next week.  Not, only that but lately I can’t. Seem to keep the Methotrexate down.  I have been on that drug for over 4 yrs. and never had any problem I fill like my whole body is just coming apart. As I sit and write this I am fighting bronchitis. I think before I get off Oriencia I would, like to try a lower dose, I am going to discuss this with her. Jo
      Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    It was the Humira which caused the psoriasis.

    I must admit, I'm not overly keen on the Methotrexate. Most weeks I have no problem, but then other times it seems to affect me. I took it yesterday, and all last night I was trotting to the toilet. I don't know if it has a diuretic effect or not, or if the weather has caused me to retain fluids until it cooled down in the night - it's very,very hot here at the moment - but it was most unpleasant. Other times, things seem to be a bit out of kilter e.g. I was at someone's place for lunch the day after taking it, and I could feel my self sort of fading in and out, so I went home. Other times, I have just felt exhausted.

    My rheumatologist said to keep taking it because it helps to keep the biologics effective for longer - not as each injection will last an extra week, butin  that the stuff will not stop being effective after taking it for years.

    Report / Delete Reply
    • Posted

      Well, I had been on 20mg. MTX for about  3 years and months after starting Oriencia my liver enzymes tripled.  My dr. didn’t seem to be concerned, but I was because I didn’t know which drug was causing the jump, so I decided to lower the MTX to 15mg. and the test got lower, but, then months later it got back up there so the MTX was lowered to 10mg. Doctor told me the same thing about not going below 4 pills ( 10mg.) then I changed doctors and we talked about getting off them MTX and she told me I could go to 2 pills ( 5mg.) which I did and that’s when the 

      psoriasis appeared.   Interesting she guessed that it was psoriasis.  I am sure she has had lots of experience with seeing psoriasis and knowing that certain drugs cause it, now I am supposed to go back to 6 pills but I think I will try and see if 4 will do it.  One thing I did notice about 3 months before I broke out my hair began to fall out more than usual and started looking really thin. I have been working for years to try to get thicker hair and it was looking pretty good and then this psoriasis happens.  One of the side effects of psoriasis is that your hair can fall out.  MTX, Oriencia and now Psoriasis make your hair fall out.  Wouldn’t it be nice if there was an RA drug that caused your hair to get thick and shiny and made you look younger and gave you lots of energy, I’m ready, bring it on, lol

      Report / Delete Reply
  • Posted

    Interesting. I take 10mg of Methotrexate, but as a single tablet, once a week. You take 2.5 mg ones - all four (or however many your dose is at any particular time) at once, or one every second day?

    I haven't noticed any difference with my hair, but mine has gone grey and has the wispy texture that grey hair can have. I spend a fortune on conditioners, etc, but also have folliculitis which responds best to a tar shampoo.I try to ration its use as it makes my hair crispy.

    Thinking about the Rheum. and when I showed him the rash, he did originally say it might be psoriasis, but that I should check with a dermatologist that it wasn't eczema. Strangely enough, the dermatologist didn't seem to be aware that psoriasis could be caused by Humira, but said that the Humira might have helped to keep it under control. Anyway changing the medication helped.

    What I have noticed since I started on Humira, then Simponee, is that I have put on a ton of weight. I asked my Rheumatologist about this but he didn't seem overly worried. I stopped smoking before I had a double knee replacement four years ago and have gone from the slimmest I was since my 20s to far fatter than I have ever been. I think as well as stopping smoking, I was eating because I was depressed about just about everything in my life.

    But you're right. Although the biologics are life changing, it is a real worry what they are actually doing to you. The necessity  for three monthly blood test (and monthly for the first year or so) do raise concerns.

     

    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