Skip to content


    Exciting News for WebMD Members!

    We've been busy behind the scenes building new message boards for you. You'll have new and easier ways to find messages, connect with others, and share your stories.

    And, this will all be available on your smartphone or other mobile device!

    What Do You Need to Do?

    The message board you're used to will be closing in the coming weeks. While many of your boards will be making the move to our new home, your posts will not. Want to keep a discussion going? Save posts you want to continue (this includes your member profile story), so that you can re-post them in the new message boards.

    Keep an eye here and on your email inbox, we'll be back in touch soon to give you all the information you need!

    Yours in health,
    WebMD Message Boards Management

    lupus and methotrxate
    craftsnow posted:
    Anyone taking this med and what side effects does it have. I have had lupus for 10 years and have been taking plaquinel for it, but arthritis is getting worse. Thanks,
    lisaisweavebee responded:

    I did metho injections a couple years back for a short time. It didn't help much for me but it usually works well for most people. It can cause nausea so they give folic acid with it to help control it. It really made me wiped out for a couple days after the injection but that was the biggest issue I had with it.

    Sorry your arthritis is worse. Hopefully this will help!

    craftsnow replied to lisaisweavebee's response:
    Thanks for the info! I kind of scared about this med, its also a cancer drug, so i don't really want to lose my hair, Ha!
    K2isKsquared responded:
    Hi Craftsnow,

    I have lupus and RA, so I can sympathize with the worsening arthritis.

    I took Mtx for 5 years at 20 mg per week. That along with Plaquinel made a BIG improvement in my disease activity. Those two meds together literally gave me back my life, which at the time I started the Mtx my life was pretty much bed all day, with a few painful trips to the bathroom being the highlights of my activity.

    The side effects for Mtx are a pretty scary read. However, you have to remember that we take a much, much lower dose of this med than cancer patients, so everything you read about this med isn't necessarily going to happen at your dose.

    I lost way more hair from lupus before I started Mtx than I ever lost from Mtx itself. I took the med in pill form and I started at 12.5 mg per week and slowly worked my way up to 20 mg per week. Each time they stepped up the dose I got better and better.

    I took three meds to combat the side effects. Folic Acid helps with the mouth sores. The day after Mtx I took leucovorin calcium which is a rescue med for my low white cell count, and I took hyoscyamine for the diarrhea. The day I took Mtx and the day after were guaranteed to keep me running to the bathroom, but this med helped my joint pain so much that it was a trade I made happily.

    My disease is currently suppressed thanks to Plaquinel, but I would go on Mtx again in a heartbeat if my joints blew up again.

    Good Luck!

    craftsnow replied to K2isKsquared's response:
    Thanks for all the info. I feel better now about taking the med. I have already taken one dose and no side effects. I take my next dose this week. Wish me well! Thansk again, Jan
    marnanie responded:
    What is methotrxate, I'm wondering if I might tell my doctor
    about it, what does it do exactly and how does it make you
    feel? I am on a host of meds but if this works so well
    then I might be able to get off some of them.

    K2isKsquared replied to marnanie's response:
    Methotrexate is a chemotherapy med used to treat cancer. Rheumatoid Arthritis patients who were on Mtx for cancer therapy noticed an improvement in how their joints felt, so the med migrated over into treating RA and then into treating SLE (lupus). Cancer patients need a higher dose of Mtx than we use.

    This med can cause some liver issues and can lower your white cell count, so your doc will probably want to run bloodwork every 4 - 6 week while you are on Mtx to keep an eye out for possible side issues they would want to address.

    Here is a short explanation of Mtx and Lupus

    Here is an explanation of several meds used in treating Lupus


    With Lupus

    WebMD's Day2Night will help you develop personal coping strategies for living with lupus – at home,
    at work, or with family
    and friends.
    Visit Lupus Day2Night

    Helpful Tips

    There is a big connection between stress and lupus. Although it doesn't actually cause lupus, it certainly exacerbates it. An article from ... More
    Was this Helpful?
    19 of 19 found this helpful

    Related Drug Reviews

    • Drug Name User Reviews

    Report Problems With Your Medications to the FDA

    FDAYou are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.