How long did it take hydroxychloroquine to start works no?

Hello all,

I was newly diagnosed with inflammatory arthritis (probably rheumatoid, but not a hundred percent). I was put on hydroxychloroquine and arcoxia. It has been approx 6 weeks, and it just feels like it's gradually getting worse, as appose to gradually better. Is this normal?

I am a mum of 4 and feel so frustrated that I am sore and tired all the time. However, I have found this site so helpful and comforting. Thankyou in advance x

6 Replies

  • I started on steroids then after four weeks I got the hospital letter and realised I could have started on hydroxy as soon as the steroids worked. So I started the hydroxy about October, I didn't feel much difference but I knew they could take ages to kick in. I stopped the steroids at the beginning of December, I didn't think the hydroxy Es working but now I realise it probably is - I'm a bit stiffer than I was on the steroids but then I got stiffer as I cut down on them.

    My thumbs are much better than they were before I started the steroids I can open bottles and pull out plugs and all the things I was unable to do so I think that is probably down to the hydroxy. I would say it has taken about 12 weeks to get the effect. For me it was a very gradual thing.

  • I guess I need to be a bit more patient. Thankyou for your reply x

  • Hi, I've been taking hydroxy for just over 3 years now. I think it took about 6wks to work. I still get stiffness pain & flares but not as often. A couple of times I've stupidly decided to stop taking them & I certainly noticed the difference. I've also had a couple of steroid injections which worked really well. Did they tell you to get your eyes checked before taking them & then every 6-9months thereafter?

    Hope they work as well for you as they have for me.

  • I've been on hydroxy for some years now and it's made a big difference. It took a good twelve weeks before I saw a real improvement. My rheumy/GP gave me a course of steroids to help while I was waiting for it to kick in. It might be worth chatting with your GP to see if they'll prescribe them for you.

  • Hi there, I'm also quite new to hydroxychloroquine, around 8~10 weeks. I contracted pneumonia and had to come off methotrexate. It knocked my RA for 6 and i felt as though I was worse than when I was first diagnosed with RA. I haven't felf any benefit from the hydroxychloroquine yet but live in hope that I can soon give my young grandchildren the attention they deserve. Fingers crossed. I really hope things get better for you very soon so you can do the things with your children that you and they deserve .

  • Many thanks for all the replies. I have spoken with my rheumy nurse and am going to start a short course of steroids. Fingers crossed that is all I need before the hydroxy starts to kick in. Wishing you all a lovely Sunday x