Ciprofloxacin / Fluoroquinolone Tendon Dangers with Rheumatoid Arthritis

My brief story about ciprofloxacin and Rheumatoid Arthritis I got a kidney infection shortly after starting Enbrel. It was Good Friday 2009. My kidney hurt and fever spiked to 104.5, after 3 days of UTI. Before then, I’d only had a minor UTI  with pregnancy. This is when my GP got the nickname “Good GP” because...Continue reading      37 Comments » Read more

Side Effects and Genes: More Evidence for Listening to Patients

Some readers say medical terms bug them. Wait! Don’t let the weird words in an abstract make your eyes glaze over. Sometimes there’s important stuff there!  You might still get the general idea if you just read “the whatever” when you get to a word you can’t pronounce. Then look up significant words if you...Continue reading      14 Comments » Read more

Failed Experiment: Methotrexate & Over the Counter Folic Acid

When I met my first rheumatologist, I left with a handful of prescriptions. One for folic acid. Really? Did I need a prescription for a vitamin? Doc said “to make sure it's enough, yes, it’s a lot more than a daily allowance.” I already knew why over the counter supplements (OTC) are not considered as reliably dosed...Continue reading      47 Comments » Read more

When Treatment for Rheumatoid Arthritis Is Even Worse than the Disease

Yesterday, we discussed the frequently-asked question of the consequences of not treating RA. People also sometimes say they just can’t take Rheumatoid Arthritis treatment any longer because “it’s even worse than the disease.” Why do patients say that and what’s a reasonable response? Let’s be clear about terms: Treatment: medicine used to improve disease activity and symptoms Benefits:...Continue reading      55 Comments » Read more

Rheumatoid Arthritis and Hair Loss

Does RA Disease cause hair loss? Hair loss is one of the things you frequently hear about in the RA community. Patients have two questions: What’s causing my hair loss? What can I do about it? Hair loss can be a side effect of Rheumatoid Arthritis treatment Some DMARDs (disease modifying antirheumatic drugs) list hair loss as a possible side...Continue reading      85 Comments » Read more

Rheumatoid Arthritis Rheumors: 2 Mysteries Solved

I thought it was brilliant the other day when a commenter called RA “the ghost disease.” It’s true that many RA myths persist and that researchers don’t yet know exactly how Rheumatoid Arthritis works. Which joints can be affected? Is there a nutritional cure that we are overlooking?   Confusion about RA is perpetuated in plenty...Continue reading      32 Comments » Read more

Do Rheumatoid Arthritis Drugs Cause Cancer?

Hopefully not. People often state that drugs used to treat Rheumatoid Arthritis cause cancer as an accepted fact. They say they that shortening the length of life is worth the quality of life they gain from treatment. Personally, I’m tremendously interested in both. Rheumatoid Arthritis has long been known to increase risk of cancer, especially lymphoma. We...Continue reading      24 Comments » Read more

Reliable Sources: Orencia Cough Side Effect & Notions of e-Patients

If I cited a percentage of patients who get a cough from Orencia, then I’d quote a source – probably a clinical trial. However, if I merely say, as a patient, that Orencia gave me a cough, then that is a firsthand experience and that’s another type of credible source for other patients. Diabetes blogger Kelly...Continue reading      62 Comments » Read more

Unusual Methotrexate Side Effects

Many patients take low enough doses of methotrexate that they don’t even have side effects... But, some strange methotrexate side effects are for real No one ever told me methotrexate could have side effects. I’m not complaining! I think that worked for me. I didn’t approach the treatment with fear. Don’t get me wrong – there was drama....Continue reading      112 Comments » Read more

Folic Acid with Methotrexate: the Debate

Folic acid & methotrexate: a tug of war Methotrexate is the most common medicine used to treat Rheumatoid Arthritis. However, some say it is still a mystery exactly how it works. Several sources I’ve read say that, because methotrexate is a folate antagonist, it inhibits the production of harmful cells with Rheumatoid Arthritis in a similar...Continue reading      53 Comments » Read more

Prednisone Side Effects

Can prednisone side effects occur even with low doses? This is the third post in a series about approaches to the use of prednisone for Rheumatoid Arthritis. Please read the first post, Prednisone Dosage for Rheumatoid Arthritis, here at this link. Do prednisone side effects occur even at lower dosages? How quickly do they occur? Do...Continue reading      69 Comments » Read more

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