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Rheumatoid Arthritis Drug Guide

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Rheumatoid Arthritis Drugs: DMARDs continued...

Examples of DMARDs:

 

Name Brand Name(s) Precautions Potential Side Effects
auranofin
(oral gold)
Ridaura

Limit exposure to sunlight and tell your doctor if you have had:
• Any adverse reactions to gold-containing medications
• A history of blood-cell problems
• Inflammatory bowel, kidney, or bowel disease

Diarrhea
• Low blood counts
Metallic taste
Mouth ulcers

Skin rash or itching

azathiaprine

Imuran

Tell your doctor if:
• You use allopurinol
• You have kidney or liver disease

• Fever or chills
• Loss of appetite
Liver problems
• Low blood counts
• Nausea or vomiting
• Extreme fatigue

Rare:

Azathiaprine is associated with certain cancers, such as lymphoma.

cyclosporine

Sandimmune, Neoral

Tell your doctor if you have:
• Liver or kidney disease
• Active infection
High blood pressure

Headache
High blood pressure
Hair growth
• Kidney problems
• Loss of appetite
• Nausea
 

Increased risk of infection and certain cancers.
gold sodium thiomalate (injectable gold)

Myochrysine

Tell your doctor if you have:
Lupus
Skin rash
• Kidney disease
Colitis

• Irritated, sore tongue
• Irritated, bleeding gums
• Metallic taste
• Skin rash or itching
• White spots on mouth or throat

Joint pain may occur for a few days after first few injections.

hydroxychloroquine sulfate Plaquenil Tell your doctor if you have vision problems; vision may be damaged with high doses or long-term use.

• Blurry vision or increased light sensitivity
Headache
• Abdominal cramps or pain
• Loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea
• Itching or rashes

leflunomide Arava

Tell your doctor if you have:
• Active infection
• Liver or kidney disease
Cancer

Stop taking leflunomide before trying to conceive.

Dizziness
Hair loss
Headache
Heartburn
High blood pressure
• Gastrointestinal or liver problems
• Low blood cell count
Neuropathy
• Skin rash

methotrexate Rheumatrex, Trexall Tell your doctor if you have:
• Abnormal blood counts
• Liver or lung disease
Alcoholism
• Active infection or hepatitis

Abdominal pain
• Chills or fever
• Dizziness
Hair loss
Headache
• Light sensitivity
• Itching
• Liver problems
• Low blood counts


Rare, but serious:

Dry cough, fever, or trouble breathing, which may result from a blood disease
tofacitinib Xeljanz • Xeljanz adds to risk of serious infections, cancers, lymphoma.
• May increase cholesterol levels and liver enzymes.
• May lower blood count.
• Upper respiratory tract infection
• Headache
• Diarrhea
• Inflammation of the nasal passage and the upper part of the throat

 

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