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    Psoriatic Arthritis
    billsbabe48154 posted:
    I have recently been dx'd with psoriatic arthritis.  Rheumatologist about to start me on Humira (if the insurance company will cover) and I'm very nervous about the possibility that this medication can cause CANCER!!!  Has anyone out there been on this med for a long time?  How do you feel?  I can't take methotrexate because I have naturally high liver enzymes.  I work on an assembly line at a car company and am always in so much pain.  Can't really quit my job!  I'm scared and don't know what to do.  Also, if this med suppresses the immune system, how do people go out into the public and not be afraid of catching something?  The plant I work in is filthy, people won't stay home when they are sick, etc.  Will I have to wear a mask?????
    _swank_ responded:
    My coworker has PA. He takes Enbrel injections and they work great for him. You take the same precautions as everyone else when you go out in public. That means washing your hands often and staying as far away from sick people as possible. He doesn't get sick any more than anyone else. He just has to be careful when he does get sick that it doesn't turn into something worse than a cold. On occasion he has to stop taking his meds. He also has to keep an eye on any cuts to make sure they don't get infected.
    billsbabe48154 responded:
    Thank you so much for your reply. It sounds like just plain old common sense will apply here.
    abraham45 responded:
    I have PA and have taken 2 Humira shots. The Psoriasis is clear for the first time in 2 years -- stick with it and I agree on good old common sense too
    billsbabe48154 responded:
    I am so glad to have a reply from someone who also has PA. Do you have a lot of inflammation and joint pain? I do, but I only have a patch of psoriasis on my right elbow. It just showed up about two years ago. But, I have had joint pain and inflammation for years. I always blamed it on my job, but nobody at work seemed to have the same problems and so severe as I have. My work has definitely exacerbated the problem. But I can't really just quit my job.

    I have read all the warnings and possible side effects and it just scares the daylights out of me. My grandfather died of lymphoma 12 years ago. It terrifies me that I might get it. Cancer really runs in my family. And I get cuts all the time at work too. Do I discontinue the medication when I get a cut?

    I'm just really scared. If I don't take it I will be in pain, and if I do take it I run the risk of cancer and infections? I go from talking myself into taking it, then talk myself out of taking it.

    Thank you for replying to my post. I appreciate all the replies and support. I'm not getting much support at work or at home.
    lisgreene responded:
    I was also recently diagnose by my Rheumatologist with psoriatic arthritis and am being treated with low dose medication called Prevaquil 200mg once a day for a month and just now started 2 times a day. The derivative is called Hydroxychloriniqe. My doctor suggested the opposite of yours. She decided to start me off with a low dose med and work our way up to stronger medications like Humera if necessary. You may want to suggest doing the same with your doctor just in case its not necessary for you to start off taking such a strong medication so soon. Good luck!
    abraham45 responded:
    My pain is mainly in my hands and knees. It has disappeared since I started Humira (now 8 weeks ago) I too, had only one small area of Psoriasis on one foot, and it is much better than it has been for years. Almost gone. As far as getting sick-- Both of my kids and i had colds last week-- they both ended up with sinus infections -- I beat the cold. I like to think that all the warnings are WORST cases, and that I will be a BEST case. Good luck!
    Bonnie0802 responded:
    Hi - I'm new to this board. My husband was diagnosed with PA about a year ago. Unfortunately, he suffers from congestive heart failure so can't take any of the biologicals (Enbrel, Humira, etc). He is having a severe flare in his shoulder and his wrist and is taking quite a bit of tylenol. Has anyone ever found any over the counter meds (homeopathic, vitamins or ???) that helps lessen the intensity of the flares?

    mater49 responded:
    hi, Try taking fish oil capsules at least 1000 mg a day, soak in 1 cup hydrogen peroxide 3% and 2 cup epsom salt (this really works). avoid all corn sweetners, white potatoes and pasta. avoid chemicals, cleaners, polish, laundry soaps, fabric softners. I take magnesum for pain. You can get everything at wallmart. I have severe PA and RA this is all I take. It does help. And best of all it can't hurt. Good Luck mater49 P.S I use olive oil for everything. From cooking to skin care
    dejohnson69 responded:
    I have been taking Humira for 3 months and have had some improvement. It can take up to 6 months to have significant improvement. As far as the Cancer risk goes what I read is that the Cancer found was benign is almost all cases. If you get time you can go on the Humira website and read more. I do want you to be aware that Humira has several programs that will help you pay for the medicine. Right now I do not pay anything. NO CO-PAY. The company that makes it covers the difference and they may be willing to pay for it even if your insurance wont cover it. You can get that information on their web site also. I am now using a new pharmacy out of Louisiana called Total Life Care. They are the ones that told me about the programs and even registered for me.I don't know how far away they can ship but I will tell you that I live in Texas and I receive it next day. About the infections, I was just told by my doctor that the meds don't make you sick but can make it hard to fight the infections and sometimes you have to go off the Humira until the infection is gone. For me the benefits far out way the risk. Before I started the Humira I couldn't get out of bed. Also you could talk to your doctor about taking something like Prednisone to help the pain until you have complete results. I started taking Prednisone 3 days ago and I am amazed at the way I feel. My joints are not as swollen and I have more range of motion and the constant pain is no longer there. It has been a sanity saver. I wish you all the luck in the world. I hope this helped even a little. Please write back and let me know how it is going.
    jenjayjer responded:
    There are so many other options out there... ask around... your doctor maybe just narrow minded and always uses what works for most people...

    ..theres a new drug called embrel that seems to work wonders ( not the ones you mentioned...)

    there is another called celebrex ((not sure of the spelling)

    bottom line is dont throw in the towel.. ask about other drugs or meds...

    eat less-- move more and move slow like simple streching in the mornings. . and swimming if at all possible

    definitely look here on webMD for some diet tips on better foods to eat
    leven2 responded:
    Hey, I've looked up both of those meds on line. They don't exist. What is it you're taking?
    leven2 responded:
    I've been diagnosed with P.A. after years of trying to get doctors to believe I had it. They said it was too rare for me to have! Hah! Nothing I'm taking is helping much. I've tried Enbrel, Humira, and anti-imflammatories. But the worse thing is the fatigue. Is anyone else experiencing the fatigue? Especially with the onset of winter?

    As a side note, although my immune system is being suppressed by the meds, I've had fewer illnesses. Go figure.

    Also this is gene related. My son is now starting symptoms.
    somrtime responded:
    leven2 I too have been recently diagnosed with PsA. I went through three rheumatolgists before one actually agreed that this could be my problem. I have been on Embrel injections for the last 5 years for extreme psoriasis on 80% of my body but I continued to ache in my lower back and pelvis area.. Now I have started Remicade infusions for the last 6 months at 6 week intervals. Even though, towards the end of my time between treatments becomes tense, over all I have had remarkable improvement. I still experience fatigue all the time to the extent I really don't have much energy other than doing my work, going home and resting and returning to work. My circles of friends and family have had a hard time understanding why I don't enjoy going out and having a good time. I'm just soo exhausted that I can't.

    My sed level has never risen and that's why I was dismissed by the first two Rheumy's My current doc believes not all PsA patients have high sed rates.

    I wished I could have my life back the way it used to be....
    k3nshijen responded:
    Hi there,

    I am new to computers and online support groups and psoriatic arthritis. I am a mum with a baby and sml child. I am tired and achey and cranky. I can't take much as I am nursing my bub. I don't really understand the diagnosis and how it will play out over my life. I just feel too young to be groaning like I do when I get out of the chair. Tonight I have declined an opportunity to go out as I just don't feel well enough, though I probably look well enough to everybody else. I'm finding it hard to come to terms with what the Rheumatologist said. He look at my ridged nails, my itching scalp, my clicking and aching joints and told me I have PA. My path results did not show much - only a slight rise in my sedimentary rate. I don't get this. Will I have this the rest of my life and will it get worse. I think I am too young to get this.

    cheers k3nshijen

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