Behcet's Syndrome Society
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'Big Girl' medications

Do you have to ASK for them? I have an appointment with a new Rheumatologist this November...thus far have been treated sporadically with steroids and colchicine.

I still have many issues despite current treatment. I am so tired and would love to have a med (or meds) that would give better quality of life with Behcets.

Is it normal to go through a progression of medication before getting to the 'big girls's?

2 Replies

Yes, Supernova, it is usual to go through this progression because the aim is to control your symptoms with the least 'active' medicine. The further up the hierarchy of medicines you go,the more likely to experience side effects you will be. Does that make sense?

The old medical oath of 'first do no harm' is, perhaps, pretty outmoded nowadays and should be replaced with something along the lines of 'do less harm than good.' The medics are always looking to achieve a sensible balance. It might just be that you don't have to go as far up the medicine chain as 'the big girl' meds before getting some relief.

Having said that, steroids are pretty strong stuff anyway and, certainly on this side of the pond at least, aren't given out readily. My personal experience thus far is that steroids have beaten any of the other meds I've tried hands down. One of the meds I used, Leflunomide, had me bluelighted in to the ER fighting to breathe. On balance, I was happier with the BD than with the medication!

If you take a look at the possible side effects of the particular 'big girl' med I've been thinking about - etanercept - you can see they're fairly horrendous!

I know that's probably a longer answer than you anticipated! What I'm really saying is, 'yes, it is normal to go through a progression of medication before getting to the 'big girls'




I agree with Di and have been through a simular experience myself with Colchicine. I have recently had a setroid injection and am starting on Azathioprine along side Colchicine to help put me back into remission after a nasty flare. Like Di said stronger drugs have side effects and it is sometimes getting the right balance that is the hard bit. With Azathioprine you have to have regular blood tests as it can damage your liver and effect bone marrow. Blood tests for me are a small price to pay for better health. To be honest I still think Behcet's even when in remission can meke you feel exhausted. I certainally know about it if I over do things.

Hang on in there. I would ask about stepping meds up at your next appointment. It won't do any harm. Cg x x


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