RA in remission: has anyone been told to stop methotrexate?
My RA has been in remission for several years with very few flare-ups, which is great, and I’m just on 7.5mg methotrexate with no adverse effects. Also have osteoarthritis, osteoporosis and Sjögren's syndrome. Last year my rheumatologist made a passing comment that I could probably stop taking MTX. I’m due to see him again soon and am nervous about being told to stop MTX. I’ve tried to read the medical literature and there doesn’t seem to be a consensus about the benefits/disadvantages of stopping MTX when in remission, but one study found that 50% (which seems like a very high percentage) of patients had their RA return within six months. I really don't want the risk of it coming back when I think about how horrible it was at the start and how long it took for the medication to reduce the pain etc.
MTX is not usually used to treat Sjögren's as trials have found it is ineffective, but I am really keen not to do anything that might make this other autoimmune disease worse as it’s already driving me round the bend.
I have also read that MTX gives some benefits for heart health in patients with inflammatory arthritis who are more liable to stroke and heart attack anyway, and my blood pressure is a little high.
The other slightly illogical reason for continuing is that being on immunosuppressants gives me access to the Covid vaccination which I would not otherwise get as I’m under 65. It might be available to buy soon like a flu jab but this hasn’t been confirmed as far as I know.
I really don’t know what to say to the consultant and am nervous that he’ll pressure me into stopping "to see what happens" when I don’t want to rock the boat.
Has anyone else taken the plunge and stopped MTX because of remission, and were you “offered”, “encouraged” or “told” to stop it?
- All Categories
- 2.3K Welcome
- 18 How to use your online community
- 30 Help, Guidelines and Get in Touch
- 40.8K Our Community
- 9K Living with arthritis
- 76 Hints and Tips
- 228 Work and financial support
- 717 Chat to our Helpline Team
- 3 Want to Get Involved?
- 393 Young people's community
- 8 Parents of Children with Arthritis
- 42 My Triumphs
- 135 Let's Move
- 26 Sports and Hobbies
- 18 Food and Diet
- 261 Coronavirus (COVID-19)
- 18 Community Feedback and ideas
- 355 Chat and News
- 37 Val's Cafe
- 283 Chit chat
- 11 News
- 4 Tails From The Cafe