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Date: 04.07.2007
From: Matthias

Subject: Luflunomide+Methotrexate

Hi, I'm posting here for the first time on behalf of my wife. She has psoriatic arthritis and has been suffering to various degrees for most of her life.
She currently has the maximum allowable dose of Methotrexate, this doesn't seem sufficient in suppressing the overall symptoms of the disease. Although she hasn't suffered from psoriasis for many years, her joints have been a constant source of agony. Her most recent trip to the local Rhuematology department resulted in her leaving with a new bottle of pills 10mg Luflunomide.
Having briefly looked it up on Wikipedia, it appears that the only big, bold, black sentence on the page is along the lines of 'Dont combine with Methotrexate as liver damage (possibly fatal) may result.)

I know that Wikipedia has a lot of dubious info, but we have been concerned that the possible side effects of this drug could outweigh the benefits.

Now I've rambled and set the scene, does anyone in this forum use the two drugs in conjunction ?
I'd love to know any pertinent info you may have.

Many thanks

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Date: 04.07.2007
From: Trina

Subject: Re: Luflunomide+Methotrexate

Hi Matthias,

That sounds a bit worrying doesn't it. I have found pharmacists great to talk to about these kinds of things. They often know more about the drug interactions than the medics do, I guess it's their speciality after all.

If I were you I'd go into a couple of chemists and ask a pharmacist or or two to look up these two drugs to see if they are safe to take together. Also make sure your wife is having regular blood tests to check her liver function - I reckon she should be having those anyway. The blood tests are a great early warning system for drugs upsetting things. Abnormalities will generally show up in the blood before any symptoms develop so people can come off offending drugs without lasting damage being done.

I think you are right to look into this to give you peace of mind if nothing else.

All the best...
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Date: 05.07.2007
From: Matthias

Subject: Re: Luflunomide+Methotrexate

Thanks for the input into the situation. I guess I've probably been overly cautious in my response to the drug combination. Then again, I'm acutely aware that hospitals are fully capable of making human errors, hence my enquiring if anyone in this forum is currently using the two in conjunction. My wife does have regular blood tests so, like you say, abnormalities should show up before any proper damage is done (In theory)

She's just started taking a course of Litozin/Rosehip extract following all the press regarding its effects at reducing joint pain. I'll keep my fingers crossed, I get very anxious about the toxicity of things like Methotrexate and feel concerned that there must come a point where the drugs cause new problems when they should be offering solutions.
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Date: 09.07.2007
From: Ruthe

Subject: Re: Luflunomide+Methotrexate

I have been on both of these meds at the same time. In the US the leflunomide is carried under the brand name of Arava. I had to stop this med because of digestive upsets. But I ended up going to Remicade and continuing the MTX.
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Date: 16.07.2007
From: Millie

Subject: Re: Luflunomide+Methotrexate

Hi! I'm on Arava at the moment and in the information leaflet it says to NOT combine Arava and Methotrexate so I would advice you to check this out with chemist or GP as soon as possible.
All the best, Millie
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Date: 11.12.2008
From: Andy

Subject: Re: Luflunomide+Methotrexate

I was just diagnosed here in the UK yesterday, and the consultant Rheumatologist offered me a choice of either of these (I went for Methotrexate as the blood moniotoring schedule is shorter and less onerous) but it was definetely an either/ or choice.

My sister has had PA for 20 years was on the max does of Methotrexcate they could give her, but without much success, and was switched to Embrel which is a brand name for Entanercept, a biological treatment rather than a chemical one as I understand it. This has been little short of miraculous, and she now walks, cycles, and holds down a busy job as a school vice principal.
It's expensive though so many people have trouble getting access to it.
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