The latest from the Rheumy

So now my doc has put me on Leflunomide( Arava) ....this will be in addition to the Plaquenil that I am taking. I really hope taking the 2 of them helps me.

I am wondering is if anyone has had experience with taking both of these medications. The Arava is new to me so I'm wondering if it's better to take with or without food. My instructions say it doesn't matter.

Thankfully he also gave me a prescription for Ibuprofen and for physical therapy :)

He told me the next step will be biologics but I'm hoping this will be the solution for me.

I have been on Plaquenil and leflunomide for nearly a year now. I had a really good response to the leflunomide at 20mg/day, but developed daily bad diarrhea within the first 2 months. I was cut back to one 20mg pill every other day, and am just now working my way back up to 20mg/day. So far so good, I'm back up to 5 pills a week, and will go up to every single day shortly. So far no trouble with diarrhea, but it did take me a bit for it to become a problem. The next step will likely be a biologic if I can't tolerate the full dose of leflunomide, or if it doesn't bring down my inflammation.

I take the leflunomide with or without food.

Thanks Stoney...that's very helpful.

I've read sometimes there is an adjustment period with lefunomide. This also happened to me with Sulfasalazine when I first started it. After a while I was fine and worked my way up to the full dose and had no problems.

I worry because I'm out on the road for work....if an upset stomach hits me at an inconvenient time...well, that wouldn't be good.

I hope this works for you! It's difficult having to deal with med changes and figuring out exactly what works for you.

You can say that again comes the waiting game again. I'm just keeping my fingers crossed that it kicks in quickly and and helps hold off the PsA.