Thursday, December 18, 2008 Hope, Community Member, asks

Q: meth vs. avara

I just got off of meth. due to losing half of my hair.  I have not been doing well and refuse to go back on it.  While I was on it I had days where I just couldn't function I was so tired, I've not had a day like that since I've stopped it.  My question is  does avara make any one feel that way?  I read about everyone saying how bad meth makes them feel but not avara .  I'm afraid that avara will be the next drug route that I take, and I just want to be able to function(I've 4 kids6-17) .  Please help if you have the info. Thanks:)

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Answers (6)
Lene Andersen, Health Guide
12/21/08 1:13pm

We are all individuals and react differently to medication. For instance, I managed very well on methotrexate for two years before I had to switch - I had side effects related to my stomach, but I have those types of side effects to all medications. I've heard of others who have been on methotrexate for a decade and do exceptionally well. However, you're clearly not one of the people who can tolerate that medication and it sounds to me like your decision to switch is a sound one. After all, the goal of RA medication is to increase your ability to live your life, not to take it away.

 

Whether you will tolerate Arava better than you did methotrexate is hard to say. It may be the medication for you or you may end up having to try another one. Finding an RA medication where the good effects out ways to side effects can be a bit of a puzzle requiring a fair bit of patience. However, we are in the lucky position that there are a number of options available to us now that weren't available even 10 years ago, so I'm sure you'll find one that works for you.

 

One side effect common to pretty much all RA medications is a certain level of fatigue around the time you get your dose. Keep in mind that as your body adjusts to the medication, the side effects will lessen and you will develop ways of working around it. Also keep in mind that once you RA is suppressed, it's quite likely that your energy levels will increase, as active RA tends to make you very tired. This means that even though you may have a couple of days with lower energy around the time you take your medication, overall, you'll be ahead.

 

Good luck!

 

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Angie, Community Member
12/19/08 1:44pm

Hello,

 

I took Arava for about six months after trying Methotrexate and same with me, Metho. made me really sick.  The Arava worked good for me, but really never took all the symptoms away for me.  I had to stop taking it, because if your not on contraceptive it could hurt your baby.  Anyway, I don't take that anymore, I am now on Plaquenil and Sulfasalazine and it's working miracles for me.  I have not had any flare ups for months, I just hope this continues to do wonders!! I'm soo thankful that I don't have many symptoms anymore.  and my CR rate keeps going down, I go back in Jan. for check up!!

 

I think you should definitely try the Arava, it's less potent than the Methotrexate, but still has some side affects. 

 

HOpe that works

Ange

 

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lorna, Community Member
1/12/09 12:36pm

I was on arava for about 6 months. It helped my ra however I had to be taken off of it beacause it caused my blood pressure to go up. Hope this is helpful.

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Ruthe, Community Member
4/27/09 9:27pm

Hi Hope,

I have been on MTX (meth) for 8 years now.  A trial of Arava 5 years ago was not good for me...caused intractable diarrhea and when I stopped the med...it took about 3 or 4 weeks to settle it down.  It did seem to help the RA, though, so a couple years ago ( before starting Remicade) we tried Arava again with exactly the same effect.  So I went to Remicade which has been good for me.

 

My hair is definitely thinned and I hadn't considered it was due to MTX.  I know that I barely need to shave my legs anymore...and wondered if it was due to my meds.  Mmmm.

 

Good luck w/Arava...if it helps you, you'll be so glad.

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star, Community Member
12/31/09 9:26pm

i have been on arava for 2 weeks and it has been worse than methotrexate as far as fatigue and weakness , i am a single mom and i cannot get out of bed some days. i also lost hair like on metho and lots of weight which is not good for me as i am too thin. i also had shortness of breath. the bad thing is it helped my RA but i had to stop it so i dont know what is next i have severe ra and am 34.

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Kristen, Community Member
1/ 9/13 5:42am
I am32, and also a single mother . It has been very hard for me as far as having any energy at all to do anything anymore . I have just been diagnosed with RA about 3 months ago but have suffered from it since 2004 . I've been on the methotrexate since I was finally diagnosed but I just wish the dr I was seeing had referred me sooner to a rheumatologist . They kept tellin me because of my age they didn't feel it necessary to look into . I had worked in nursing for 11 years and under doctors and I get that fact about my age . Because doctors will continue to tell a young person that there's no need to look into certain things because of your age , but in all reality they did me more harm than they did supposedly lookin out for my quality of life that started deminishing years ago . If they would just have listened to me with all my signs and symptoms instead of shunning me I honestly think my RA would be more under control . I just stopped the methotrexate and I just today started on the avata and I really hope it helps I have two girls 4 and 5 yrs old . I'm just soo tired of them seeing me like this not being able to do a lot of things I used to do . I just blame the doctors more because of not treating it when it really should have been addressed much much sooner than this . Reply
christoff, Community Member
9/27/11 4:29am

Authentic chi kung, not merely physical exercises that appear to be chi kung, has been known to help CURE arthritis.  I know because I used to suffer from it ;)

 

The drugs will only worsen the condition by treating the symptoms.

 

I started with the book "The Art of Chi Kung for Health and Vitality" (Wong Kiew Kit).  But you will need to attend a chi kung course to experience the full benefits.

 

There is also a short demonstration you can try on youtube which helped me with the pain until the book arrived.  Search for "wong kiew kit Ireland youtube" the demonstration starts at 5min mark.

 

Best wishes to all you RA and Arthritis sufferers, there is hope!

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By Hope, Community Member— Last Modified: 01/09/13, First Published: 12/18/08