Crushing My Pills To Powdered Every 24 hrs

So I recently was diagnosed with Lupus. Although not all of my test results were positive for lupus, my doctor said he was going to go with his gut feelings and put me on 300mg of plaquenil to take daily. I have been taking it on and off. I'm also on Prednisone due to my platelets dropping to 22. So 40 mg of Prednisone and 300 mg of plaquenil daily. I believe I'm to take the hydrochloroquine every 12 hrs but I just am having trouble waking up for the 2nd dose ( ex. 6pm take 300 mg - 6am skipped that dose until 6pm again) I'm not sure what effects this is having on my body. I hope not killing myself. I haven't been eating the healthiest Because the steroids make me so hungry so I eat anything. I have very weird chest pain feels like alot of pressure. Abdominal pain and tiredness/ sluggish feeling after taking my meds. Is crushing them to powder harming me? Is the every 24 hrs not good either?

18 Replies

  • Hello oraruth_23,

    Firstly, don't take instructions on what drugs to take or how to take them from random people on the internet like me!!!!!!!!

    The patient information leaflet in my pack of hydroxychloroquine (placquenil) says that I should swallow the tablets whole with a meal or a glass of milk. I should not crush or chew my tablets. It also says that if I forget a dose, I should take it as soon as I remember. However, if it is nearly time for my next dose, skip the missed dose. I must not take a double dose to make up for a forgotten tablet

    BUT MOST IMPORTANTLY, it also says:

    *****"always take your tablets exactly as your doctor has told you. Please check with your doctor or pharmacist if you are unsure"*****

  • I think you are right, the tablets have a protective coating on them to protect your stomach lining. If you crush them, your stomach is not protected.

  • The best answer to this would be from your doctor. If you're really concerned, stick to what the packets advise.

  • First of all, I don't think the crushing the tablets will harm you - because the data sheet says that if you have difficulty swallowing them the pharmacist can crush them and put them in a capsule so you can empty it into jam or honey or something to be able to take them.

    However, any medication will only work well if you take it regularly and missing your doses isn't doing that. Can you not change the time slightly to make it easier? I take a drug twice a day - and 7.30 is ideal, I'm awake in the morning and it's about dinner time in the evening. I set an alarm for another tablet I must take in the late afternoon - can you not do that? It is possible to get pill boxes with alarms so you know it is time to take something.

    These really are all things you must discuss with your doctor or pharmacist - because, as whisperit says, you mustn't take advice from random lurkers on the internet! However respectable we may really be!

  • Hello

    I take 400g of hydroxychloroquine a day and have done for nearly 3 years now,

    I take 200mg in the morning and 200mg in the evening. I take these between 7-8am and 7-8pm.

    I am not 100% precise on the times.

    However, I would not take the tablet crushed. The reason the chemist can crush them for you and put them in a capsule for you to take instead, is the capsule protects your stomach lining. That is my understanding of it. If you crush the tablet it is too harsh on your stomach.

    Please speak to your doctor or pharmacist. Do not take crushed tablets until you have got proper advice.

    And please let us know what you are told.

    Best wishes


  • The note I read, on the company website, said quite clearly that it could be crushed and put into a capsule so you could break it onto food of some sort to take more easily. I wouldn't have said it otherwise.

  • PMRpro, I'm not here to argue or offend anyone, that was just my gut feeling with these tablets, lots of people suffer from stomach and bowel issues in the early days with them as it is.

    I have checked my packet. I take the Zentiva brand. They are described as Film Coated Tablets.

    The leaflet states: take this medicine by mouth. Swallow the tablets whole with a meal or a glass of milk. Do not crush or chew your tablets.

    Maybe each brand is different? But I would check with a doctor before crushing tablets. It would be damage your stomach or cause unnecessary side effects,


  • By the way, I always take mine with or after food and in the early days, with a glass of milk.

  • Hello good advice already given so I won't repeat it :) Experience of my own meds is that they cause stomach problems of all sorts, even taking omeprazole which may protect the stomach doesn't stop any unpleasant side effects. I take 400mg hydroxychloroquine per day, and I agreed with my rheumy that I could take it in once dose as I was struggling with fatigue and brain fog, getting muddled with whether I had taken any or not etc. I now take all my meds in one go with or immediately after breakfast as that lines the stomach. According to my bloods that method works ok for me. But I did check that it was ok to do. Please check with the Dr who prescribed it. Hope you feel reassured by everyone's experiences x

  • Hi, I crush mine, hydroxy and prednisolone and add to water to take on my doctors advice and I haven't had any problems. Hope that helps.

  • Hi,

    I would certainly contact your GP. As far as I am aware, you should NOT BE CRUSHING your medication. The pills are compressed to release the chemicals into your system gradually. By crushing them it alters the release effects of the drugs.

    Please do not worry, but do check with your GP. I may be wrong, but I am sure this is correct.

    Take care Sandy

  • You should not miss medication especially steroids and I am not sure you should be crushing them either, I take myfortic which is Mycophenolate acid and these are quite large tablets but it says in the instructions you must not crush them they must be taken whole , check the leaflets that come with the medication . Why don't you change the times you take them so you don't have to get up so early

  • oraruth_23

    I don't know which brand of hydroxychloroquine you take but I have checked my packet. My tablets are the Zentiva brand and the leaflet states they shouldn't be crushed or chewed. They should be swallowed whole, with a meal or glass of milk.

    You should definitely check your medication instructions and discuss it with your GP.

    Best wishes


  • Hi, rather to crush or not! I can't take gel pills cause I have gastroparesis which slows down your digestive system. Some medication have a coloring coating that makes me nauseous so I have to scrape it off. I also have swallowing something's. I have esophageal spasms and when they happened and if I'm eating I have had to pull food out cause I'm chocking to death.

    I would recommend talking to your Dr. there could be a liquid form you could take.

    Is there a particular reason why your crush your pills instead of taking them whole?


  • Just that when I try swallowing them it feels like I'm instantly choking preventing me from getting the pill down

  • Then discuss it with your specialist - there is an oral suspension version available for paediatric use and for people who cannot swallow. Many medications are available in liquid formulation but aren't used routinely as tablets are so much more convenient. But if you can't swallow them - it doesn't help compliance does it! My husband has exactly the same problem.

  • I understand if your doing it due to swallowing issues, I have that problem too. Have you gone seen a gastrologist to test your Esophagus? I have Esophageal spams which happens at the oddest times, which is when i'm chocking. IF it happens when I'm not eating it feels like a 18 wheeler just smack me in my chest. You have trouble breathing when it happens as well.

    Some medications have liquid for patients who has this issue.

  • Hello,

    It sounds like it would be a good idea for you to discuss your medications with a consultant or pharmacist so that you can make sure that your treatment is fully tailored to your needs.

    We also have a leaflet on medications which you might find useful

    You mentioned that you struggle with your diet, so you might also find our information on lupus and diet of interest