Side effects of injection Rituximab and its chances?

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Hi,

My mother (age 56) is suffering from rheumatoid arthritis from past 8-9 years and she is on medication since last 7 years from the specialist doctor (Rheumatologist) but her condition is not getting improved. So we have now consulted to another doctor and s\he has advised an injection Rituximab. So can you please guide me that what are the chances of its severe side effects and what are it side effects? Do you think its advisable to go for this injection. Hoping for an early response.

 

Thank you

Kind Regards

RM

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  • Posted

    Hi to r71120:   I know your Mum is have ing a lot of pain with rheumatoid, and it probably increases at certain times of the year...I'm presuming that she is already on Methotrexate, and has times of being given predisone..??  Rituximab is usually used for cancer patients, as it is a medication that fights the cancer cells, and is supposed to decrease the proliferation of more cells...from watching these patients, I know that there are quite a lot of severe side affects, and the patient needs to be monitored (normally in a hospital environment for the administration of drug through an IV infusion), and also then needs close watching/monitoring by caregivers, as it can even cause side affects for a period of time..not just during the time of administration.  I really think that you and your family, along with Mum, should really research and discuss if the concerns of having this drug are what you really want....was there another reason why you sought a secong opinion...not that I don't agree with seeding the best possible treatment for your Mum...and I do understand that Mum may be not coping with the pain...I think what I would consider first (as you would not have asked the question if you didn't have concerns) is to do as much research about this drug (go to as many sites on the internet that you can find, speak to your pharmicist who you buy Mum's other medications from (I have found them to be very helpful/knowledgable re what works, side affects and drug interractions)  go back to both GP and the specialist who advised the use of this treatment;   ask further questions.  Why they feel that this drug will help Mum, and are they concerned  (did either advise Mum re the side affects?) re the side affects, and do they have experience of the drug being advantageous for rhuematoid???  I hope that all of this rambling has given you my message of, please don't jump into this, as Mum probably already has some side affects from the medications that she is already taking, and if drug really not guaranteed to work, is it worth it?   Please let me know what you decide, and if Mum does decide to go this way, alos let me know the results, as I would like to know for my own knowledge.    Bron
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    • Posted

      Hi Bron,

      Thank you so much for your reply. Yes doc had told us about its side effects but have also shared his experience that only 2-3% have got side effects. And we have already taken the 3rd opinion from other doc and s/he too adviced the same drug. sure will let you know.

      RM

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    • Posted

      Hi , just read your replies to my thoughts, and good, it sounds as if you and your family have covered all the bases that I would try.....but, sounds like you all still have reservations????  Is this the case.?  and if so, tell us what are the family's concerns..there seems to be something holding you/Mum from not going down this line of treatment, or are you all needing confirmation that this is correct move/or seeking some alternative treatment?  I can understand all of these situations, as it does sound like a bit of a step to take......let us know if any of these side questions are your real question?  (am I making sense again?)
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  • Posted

    I read up on Rituximab.  It is given as a very very slow injection of a very strong medication.  This would have to be given in a clinical setting where significant allergic reactions could be handled immediately. Rituximab is a monoclonal antibody that  attacks the overactive immune B cells that are attacking  your mother's joints.  It  is approved by the FDA for cases like your mother's that are not responsive to more conservative medications. 

        I would say that the choice is up to your mother and her doctor, certainly not those of us in this forum.  You might suggest that  your mother ask for a 2nd opinion from another doctor. 

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