Biologics

Just wondering if anyone has got any advise for me.

I've been on cimzia for 8 months, it's working very well on my RA, just a few painful joints and no morning stiffness or flares which is great.

I know it reduces your immune system but I've been so unwell lately, catching one thing after another. Seven weeks ago I caught the flu and was extremely weak and unwell for weeks, then I got laryngitis and a bad throat infection. I had to go on antibiotics for 10 days. I eventually felt better. However after a week of feeling well it's started again, very sore throat and generally feeling unwell again. I really don't want to go back on antibiotics as I have to miss my injections then I feel the awful pain returning, I don't want to mess up my routine of injecting either in case it doesn't work as well as it has been before.

Is there anything I could do to improve my immunity? I do take vitamins and have a good diet. It is worrying because when I was unwell before I started biologics it cleared quite quickly but now it takes me ages to get better. I would appreciate any advise anyone has. I've just returned to work ( new job) after having a little break and really don't want to any time off.

Thanks. :))

17 Replies

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  • when I used to be on Biologics I eat and still eat tons of fruit and veggies and made sure that I was not allergic to any food and started drinking tonics/Chinese herbs and started exercising. I don't know what you eat at the mo but just doing things like drinking green juices has really helped me.

    I personally only take vitamins if I know that I am deficient in something but it took me a while to build up my immune system.

    if you are worried about anything then I would recommend seeing a holistic dr.

    Hope you get your health issues sorted out soon.

  • Thanks for your reply, I will look into that X

  • I agree with helihelix look at hygiene do simple things like wash your hands out you have been out and about. I don't know if you can take these on your meds but I have also found that doing things like taking wild oregano oil and Echinacea.

    Even if you do think you are suffering from sort of side effects from the meds that you are on at the mo but I will say this that I am constantly around people that are ill and since eating tons of fruit and veg and juicing I rarely get sick these days. However when I do get ill I get very sick but anyways also make sure you have a healthy gut because the healthier your gut is the better you will feel.

    You may want to think about reading a book and looking someone up called the medical medium he has loads of useful information about arthritis etc in his book.

    also See Andrew Saul & Thomas Levy's info-YouTube videos, about vitamin C - Ascorbic Acid, specifically - where so much research has been done. Taking this primary form (ie. in powder) can easily provide those very high amounts that one may certainly need for an illness (& several)...definitely good for pneumonia. Can also take a buffered form of Ascorbic Acid,- (called Sodium Ascorbate or Magnesium Ascorbate)- if the acidic taste of Ascorbic Acid, becomes too much.

    --For me, I make a delicious mock Lemon-aid of Ascorbic Acid powder, stevia, Lemon Essential oil, & perhaps one of the mint essential oils.

    --Must listen to what these guys have to say & how to implement the Ascorbic acid ...gradually & testing your own body's reaction and of course talk to your dr.

    We are all different but I had the flu jab once and I actually found that when I did not ill everything I was feeling was suppressed and the virus never came out properly if anything the flu jab made me feel worse and we are all different but on a personal note I have to say that I hate the crap that they put into these flu jabs please do some research before having this jab but of course do what is best for you and your body.

  • Thank you for your advise. I've screen shot your message and will look into it all. Many thanks X

  • no prob happy to help you out. if you have a facebook look up some of the functional health practitioners on there they always have loads on info on there sites that you may find useful. Hope you manage to get your health back on track soon. :)

  • I'd also concentrate on hygiene. Which is not to say that you don't of course! But be extra vigilant as a huge number of infections can be stopped in their tracks by simple things like hand washing. Carry a tube of the anti-bacterial hand gel with you and use it a lot, if people around you have colds ask them to be careful about not sneezing near you because you have a compromised immune system, and if you can avoid hugging and cuddling snotty kids. Little things like that...

    And you have had your pneumococcal jab as well as your flu jab?

  • I work in a school with lots of snotty kids lol. I will probably get the flu jab this year. Thanks for your reply X

  • This happened to me when I started Enbrel. I was taking 20mg MTX along with the Enbrel. I asked if I could cut down the amount of MTX reasoning that the combination of drugs had overwhelmed my immune system. It worked amazingly well. I don't take MTX at all but imagine that lowering the dose might have the same effect. Maybe something to discuss with your Rheumatologist?

  • I don't know if they would lower my dose but I will ask. I'm only on cimzia, DMARDs never worked for me. Thanks for your reply X

  • Please keep a diary on the Cimzia, I know not every drug works the same way on different people but I and a friend on here became very ill on Cimzia. If you develop breathing problems too, speak to your Rehumy. Mine insisted it wasn't the Cimzia, but after 18 months of struggling which included the skin on my fingers splitting, I insisted I came off it. My GP put me on a weeks course of high dosage steroids. My breathing improved within 2 days. Unfortunately I have never got rid of the skin problem. I am told the Cimzia switched on another allergy.

    Shazbat

  • I feel it's working very well on my RA. I will keep notes of how often I'm ill and talk to my rheumy. What biologic do you use now? Thanks for your reply X

  • It worked well on my RA but the other illnesses increased, but I eventually ended up gasping for breath just sitting. I assumed it was my asthma. When I came off the drug they gave me a CT scan on my lungs but then told me they had found two small tumours. Fortunately I was told they were nodules caused by my RA. I have had 2 scans since and they are happy they are not growing. I'm now on toczilimab. I was not keen at first as it was monthly infusion. But it's great, I am now on injections. No chest infections for over 14 months. So I'm keeping my fingers crossed.

    Shazbat

  • Oh god what a worry I might ask for a chest scan, I get so many colds and flues I am often breathless at times. Great news about your new biologics. Hope you stay well X

  • It's difficult when your immune system in compromised Sandra, even more so on antiTNF's & biologics. I'm not on them & nowhere near as compromised as you but I still avoid coughs & sneezes & anyone who's contagious. If my h gets a cold I increase my Vitamin C packed fruits, it worked particularly well when he recently had one. I don't go ott but something I do when using public loos is not only wash my hands after but also use antibacterial gel when I've opened the door to leave, you don't know who's not washed their hands when exiting & touching the washroom door handle! Do ask your Surgery to be put on the list for yearly flu vaccination & the pneumococcal vaccine, mine send a reminder when it's due. The ones you are best avoiding are live vaccines. This link is an excellent guide nras.org.uk/immunisation-fo...

    I don't know if your school have made staff aware but there's been a recent spike of reported cases of scarlet fever, always more prevalent in March & April but more incidences this year, forewarned is forearmed. x

  • Thanks for your reply, since July when I started biologics I've been ill every few weeks, sometimes just tummy bugs and colds which aren't too bad but I had a very bad virus recently which lasted 5 weeks and had to take antibiotics in the end. I will definitely have my jabs I think. It's ruining how good I'm feeling now my arthritis is kind of controlled. I'll also use hand gel more often. X

  • It is difficult to avoid getting anything when you're working with children. I helped out the family nursery school years ago before strict regulations applied & I had that many colds, seemed like I'd get over one & then have another, that was before RD! I think all you can do is protect yourself as much as possible, hope for the best & if you do come down with anything like the virus you just had get yourself to your GP as soon as possible, hopefully that way you'll nip it in the bud & it doesn't get hold. Little bottles of hand gel don't take up much room in your bag, you could keep one in your pocket too. x

  • You're right its difficult when you work with children. That's priority for my shopping list this week X

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