Anti TNF's and Biological Therapies

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nuttynana
nuttynana Member Posts: 44
Hi

Hoping you can help. Need advice!!

Am due to see my Nurse Specialist on Friday - have been off work for last 4 weeks with a flare and acute fatigue. Have previously been on Enbrel and Humira - Humira stopped during this latest problem due to feeling so rotten and very tired.

I am on Omeprezole, Meloxicam, Sulphazirprine, Folic Acid and I inject MTX weekly. Any ideas what next - are the biological therapies available widely - would I be eligible??

Also have been having breathing problems in the last week - feel like I have asthma again - not had this for last 9/10 years since being diagnoised with RA. Asthma was not really under control and it was a blood test that identified my problems were RA related.

HELP......

Hazel

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  • helpline_team
    helpline_team Posts: 3,617
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hi Hazel
    First of all get these breathing problems seen to. The Practice Nurse at your GP surgery will usually do asthma checks if you can't get to see a GP easily.
    You've tried a lot of drugs and you're right to be thinking of 'what next'. The biologic most widely available and prescribed is Rituximab but the literature does say it may not be prescribed if you get short of breath easily. This link will give you information
    http://www.arc.org.uk/arthinfo/patpubs/6270/6270.asp
    You should be eligible for this as you've tried DMARDS and anti-TNFs.
    There are other biologics such as Tocilizumab which we are hoping will become available throughout the UK in due course.
    Sounds like its time for a discussion with your rheumy nurse about your treatment options, whether to try the third anti-TNF, Remicade or go for the biologics.
    Best wishes
    Val
  • nuttynana
    nuttynana Member Posts: 44
    edited 30. Nov -1, 00:00
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    Hi Val

    Many thanks for your advice. I will contact the GP surgery - must say the GP there has been brilliant - even visited me twice at home without having to request a home visit, and he is fully aware that he is not a specialist in this area and has tried really hard to get me an appointment with the Nurse Specialist asap - it's taken 4 weeks for them to see me!!!

    Fingers crossed Friday will bring some relief and support as to what next - need to get back to work!! This is probably the worst I have felt for such a prolonged period of time - not just with pain but more the totally fatigue. It's a struggle to do anything, but I then think am I finding it so hard because I am not doing much - just a vicious circle.

    Thanks again.
    Hazel