How to know when your "drug of choice" is working

Currently getting treated for a lovely UTI (by some awesome antibiotics that worked almost immediately) - guess that shouldn’t be a surprise since Rinvoq has knocked my white blood cells, etc. right down. Anyway…nothing like having to stop your current drug to find out that it was actually doing something…especially when it didn’t seem like it.


Maybe it’s just disease progression ? My knee pain has never been this bad. I didn’t think the Rinvoq was doing a whole heck of a lot, at least not consistently. However - holy cow but am I a mess right now. Fatigue levels aren’t too bad (but with all this wildfire smoke not doing much anyway) but I have NEVER had such bad knee pain. The other usual spots are grumpy (hands and wrists always, hips…) but my knees don’t want to bend all the way, they are only good if I don’t use them and hold them in a slightly bent position. Last week I “blew out” my back, this week it’s knee pain so bad I actually dreamt I went to emergency(just means it hurts in my sleep).

Guess that Rinvoq is doing something…after tomorrow (last antibiotic) I can go back on it. Hate being dependent on stupid meds that only half work. Wish I could prove that somehow they are slowing down damage, would make it seem more worthwhile.

Just a vent ! Ok, an a bit of a realization.

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I wish the mechanics of our deranged immune systems could be measured effectively too. But we have a waxing a waning disease in activity which also muddles how well a med works on any given day. Let’s see how you feel when you’re back on Rinvoq. Let’s hope you’re pleasantly surprised.

Hey @Northernelf it sounds like you are knackered! I was looking for an excuse to use that word again. When I am on Rinvoq alone, I still pay for any over exertion doing things like raking, cutting firewood a brisk walk etc. I still have to be very careful to quit before I feel things. If I take 200 mg Celebrex (or generic) once a day, in combination with the Rinvoq, I feel much better and my body relaxes as opposed to be pain tense. At least I can calm a flare using both. I haven’t had any stomach issue yet but I try and only add Celebrex when I’m expecting a long hard day or when pain induced sleeplessness occurs and only take it for a maximum of 4 days a week. (which is far too often) So I guess I would suggest asking if your doctor would be ok with you using Celebrex with the Rinvoq for a few days. The Celebrex seems to kick in about 3-4 hours after I take it but really takes the edge off of the pain in my hips, shoulders, neck, knees feet allowing me to sleep a bit better.

@Amos why do you think taking Celebrex 4 times a week is too much? I take Arcoxia daily in varying strengths as I get it prescribed at the lowest dose so I can flex it up or down. I also take a stomach protector to ensure no issues with that. Right now it’s flexed up as this summer has proved problematical for me, but last winter it was flexed right down. But I can’t do what I do (and that’s not raking or cutting fire wood either) without it.

I can only explain how Celebrex works for me. I only take it for 3-4 days: 1. Mild heartburn after day four. 2. After 2 days it causes a pee urgency that makes me have to stop everything and go but it’s all false urgency (A typical issue in men my age anyway that is greatly amplified) 3. After day 3, it loses its effectiveness by at least half. I’ve used Celebrex since it replaced Viox some 30 years ago for three severely herniated discs. I can’t explain the science but on the first two days of taking it, inflammation pain really decreases and my head is clear…then I seem to have more negative effects than positive. It used to work longer and better. I rarely have stomach issues from meds but struggle with bladder issues far more…including Tylenol.

Unfortunately I am one of those folks that can’t do NSAIDs - I’m already on Pantaprazole daily for gastritis issues, lots of GI issues, have to be careful what I eat. I can get away with like one dose of Advil when I have a lot of pain or an very bad headache (maybe 2-3 times a year) but I hate to because of the side effects. I’ve also tried Aleve and Celebrex and Duclofenac…no success GI wise.

sigh Instead I dream of chopping off random body parts. Tomorrow I’m back on Rinvoq, hopefully that helps. Even the antibiotic gave me some horrible abdominal cramps, enough that I want to give it an extra day before the Rinvoq.

On a brighter note, rain here in southern BC last night, seems to have beat the smoke down for now - I can actually see some blue sky and clouds !

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Just please do know you should never take Celebrex or indeed any NSAID without a stomach protector like omeprazole or the like unless you want to add heartburn and indeed stomach acid issues or possibly stomach ulcers to the list of your medical issues. Even when you take them as sparingly as you do Celebrex @Amos.

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Thanks, good advice that was never given to me before.

You can buy things like Nexium over the counter which is the same as omeprazole. That at least will help the heart burn issues if nothing else.

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I’ve been in a similar position when I had Covid at the beginning of May. I was moaning about how the biologic wasn’t working anymore…and then stopped it for two weeks or so…and realised how much it WAS working. Ironically, while the covid was at it’s worst, the arthritis was fine - but I think many of us find that if we have a cold or infection or flu, or whatever. It’s when the immune system isn’t fighting the infection any longer that it starts biting into the joints…and the tendons…and the muscles…and I’m sure it has a go at my teeth, too!

I know your post is a few days old now, so hope you’re feeling better.

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