Anyone know rules for stopping injections when ill?

I have some awful flu / bug. I hardly slept last night as I just could not stop coughing. I am on Mtx and Enbrel. Should I give up injections? Normally my RA is well controlled. My GP is useless. On one occasion when I asked him this question he asked what medication I was on so he could look it up! He gave me 1 mg of pred when I was having a bad flair. I will try to contact rheumy nurse who is helpful if I can contact her. Would like to know what others have been told.

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  • Hi, If you are unable to talk to the Rheumy nurse I would try phone the healthcare company who deliver your Enbrel and see if you can speak to the pharmacy. I asked them a question re antibiotics and Enbrel and they were helpful. I was also told once by a rheumy nurse that if your cold/ flu is producing phlegm that is not clear ( ie an infection) then you should not take your meds that week. I always tend not to but I am quite precautionary. Hope you have success and feel better soon. NK x

  • Thank you . I will get in touch with HAH. I would not have thought of that

  • Yes it was HaH who I spoke to and they were very helpful. Hope you feel better soon.

  • Hi I am on methotrexate and have always been advised not to take it if I am unwell. But speak to your reumy nurse if it lasts longer than a week.

  • Nobody has given me advise about this. I once spent 14 days in hospital on IV anti biotics for pseudomonas on lungs (I have Bronchiectasis) and still injected MTX. None of the nurses on the ward told me I shouldn't!! Also I had major surgery (mastectomy) while still using MTX. Not even the surgeon said I should stop using it! In fact the only time I stopped was when I started chemotherapy for breast cancer. Nobody advised me to stop, it just seemed sensible to do.

  • I caught chicken pox 5 weeks after starting enbrel in 2013 and was advised to stop all of my arthritis meds until I was free of the virus. Because no one could tell me for sure whether I was still contagious once the spots dried up I was off my meds for six weeks and had to restart my Methotrexate at a lower dosage and build up again a tablet a week. I was starting to feel some symptoms at this point but nothing major and the enbrel kicked in as soon as I restarted it which helped enormously.

    These days I tend to stop taking the enbrel and methotrexate when I have a bug so I can fight it off but keep taking the Hydroxychloroquine as I don't believe that it's an immunosuppressant.

  • Thank you everyone for your advise. I did manage to speak to a rheumy nurse and have decided to stop Enbrel and MTx mainly as Mary2G says to help fight it. Nurse thinks will only be off for a week unless it develops into a chest infection and I then need antibiotics. Hopefully it won't come to that as my G is usually less than sympathetic. It seems as if everyone around me has the same bug. Still coughing but getting some sleep now.

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