Methotrexate and alcohol

Hey everyone. I have heard so many different opinions about methotrexate and alcohol. I don't drink a lot atall but hate being told I can't have any especially when I'm having a good spell and not feeling too bad. Like the odd glass of wine at the weekend! I have been told no more than one glass at a time and no more than 4 units a week. Anyone been told any different?

10 Replies

  • Hi there, On the web it says alcohol and methotrexate ok. Got an apt with rheumo on Wed. He talking about prescribing that for me as had bad reaction to previous meds. Would love to know what you think of methotrexate. Hope you have a good day.

  • I have read different things on how much alcohol you can have. So confusing! I have had my 5th injection of it on Tuesday. I am having injections as I tried the tablets before and they made me feel really sick and wiped out. Injections have been much better. First few weeks I was a bit sicky and tired but that's easing now. Have had some mouth ulcers but they go quickly. I was petrified before starting this medicine but so far so good. Helped my joints a lot! Good luck with it and keep us posted how you get on. You can message me with any questions if your worries about anything.

  • My rheumatologist and GP used to tell me 7 units a week (though I have also seen warnings that you should drink nothing). You need to watch your LFTs (Liver function tests). If the numbers go up sharply and you drink regularly it is likely to be due to alcohol. Even smallish amounts of alcohol and MTX can end in cirrhosis - so it is worth paying attention to the advice.

    I found 7 units (about 2/3 of a bottle of wine) a week quite difficult to stick to - but my monthly LFTs showed it if I drank more.

    If you feel you want to drink significantly more than this regularly - maybe you need to ask for a different drug.

  • Thanks for that Maggie. Having bloods done weekly at the moment so will keep an eye on everything.


  • I was on methotrexate like both tablets and injections before.

    My advice on alcohol with this is to just stick with what they advise. Being young and stupid with it, over my birthday weekend I drank more than I usually would have with it (still not a huge amount but a bit more than they recommend) and that evening I had crippling stomach pains like I've never experienced in my life and spent the night in hospital to monitor my liver. A week later having my blood tested my liver function was around 180!

    After this I definitely didn't touch alcohol again, and the one time I had a couple of glasses of wine it increased my liver function results again.

    So my advice is definitely just stick with what the doctors tell you, they tell you to not drink more than one or two while on this for a reason xx

  • Mine went up sharply at the blood test 2 days after my 50th birthday - so young and stupid has nothing to do with it. Luckily it came back down on its own!

  • I found this leaflet which is one of the most comprehensive I've seen, and seems up-to-date. You'll see that alcohol can vary depending on your sex and other factors, so I'd suggest checking with your rheumatologist or rheumatology nurse to see what's best for you.

    I'm allowed 10 units per week with at least 2 days alcohol free, but I tend not to have that much as the liver has enough to cope with between all the drugs I take and having lupus! But a glass or 2 of wine now and then is nice!

  • Hi I have been on methotrexate for a while and would say "listen to your body" if you have a glass or two of alcoholic drink while on methotrexate and feel ill then don't drink what ever that was again. I have found that certain drinks are better than others, beers - lagers and ales can induce an unpleasant effect but ciders and wines are fine and the occasional spirit is fine just don't go mad and have a limited amount to be sociable. Trial and error was the way I found out and I expect others have done too.

    Good luck

    Madmagz x

  • Thank you so much for the replies. Lupylass that leaflet was brilliant. Thank you. Will stick to those guide lines.


  • wee are all different some of us will manage a little and be ok some will take a little and think they are ok some will take a lot off convincing any good that they are not doing themselves a ny good having a drink i got diagnosed with sle back in2002 and was advised by the then rumi to avoid alcohol that i have done apart for one wee dram at midnight on new years eve if their is any dought best avoided in fact most people with lupus will be getting prescribed other meds along with methatrexate or other strong drugs i see people on long term meds Monday to Friday and party at weekends then moan about the meds not working

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