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Living with Psoriatic Arthritis (PsA)

Stopping Leflunomide


#1

I am an “old newbie”, largely because I forget my sign-in details, lol! I have had a similar disease progression to many others here.
For the past couple of years my PsA has been well controlled with methotrexate, leflunomide and 2.5 mg prednisone. However, several weeks ago, a blood test revealed a very low whit blood count leading to a urinary infection and a hospital stay with intravenous antibiotics and fluids.
Following this, my rheumatologist took me off the daily leflunomide and doubled the prednisone. There hasn’t been any discussion as to the duration of this line of treatment, although he said that if I couldn’t tolerate the pain, I should start a halved dose of leflunomide, with regular blood tests. I have not gone this route, but am wondering about possible damage to my joints and other organs.
So, my question is, should I be concerned about the larger dose of prednisone and the cessation of leflunomide?


#2

That’s still a fairly low dose of prednisone, and my understanding is that it’s within the low range that is considered safe long term.

Once you’re feeling better, you can have a talk with your doctor about a new long range plan. Are you eligible for a biologic?


#3

Thank you! I’m a year and a half away from government funding for a biologic; happens at 65 here.

Susan


#4

Wow Susan, that Sucks (there’s just no other word for it). I wouldn’t be able to work without mine - and I had my first biologic at 37. The government earns as much or more from tax on me as the biologic costs, and there would be a lot more government funded doctors visits without it. Not smart policy from a government point of view!


#5

I’ve been living on 2.5 milligrams of prednisone for two years. It keeps me from jumping off the roof :wink:

I did not do well on methotrexate or humira.


#6

Thank you, and I’m glad you’re not jumping off the roof!

Susan