Tocilizumab and steroid injection : Are these drugs... - NRAS


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Tocilizumab and steroid injection


Are these drugs not in the shielding group ?

9 Replies

Steroid injections are slow release of small amounts of steroids so I’m not sure they pose the same risk as it’s usually for people who take more than 5mg a day over a long period.

Any biologic adds to your risk profile, but as doctors get more experience with covid they have found that it is not as extreme as first thought. And tocilizumab is now actually being used to treat people with covid.

So if you are under 60, are in reasonable health and have no other diseases like asthma, diabetes or heart disease then you will probably only have moderate risk and not need to shield.

allanah in reply to helixhelix

I agree, although I have also been shielding as I have asthma and heart problems too !!

bubblyalex in reply to allanah

Same here because of asthma and weight now too it seems. 🙄 Definitely had enough of the shielding lark though.

I would have said no but my rheumy clinic (which has admitted to erring on the side of caution) said that I have should shield if I had a steroid injection so I decided not to. That was a while ago though, so their advice might have changed...

My understanding is that steroids (depo) are released so slowly and at such a low dose, they are not considered a risk in the same way as long term oral steroids. They’re still learning more about Covid and risk factors as time goes on.

Thanks lady and bless you all keep smiling and laughing xxxx

Yes Tocilizumab is on the shielding list. I had/ have PMR, GCA, LVV and had weekly injections for 12 months. I am on the shielding program.

It makes you more susceptible.

Tbh I think Shielding is now thought to be a very individual advisory!

On paper situation looks as if I should lock myself away & lose the key.

Earlier in the year I eventually got the Shielding letter from wherever...offering me the food boxes etc...but I spoke to my Consultant & he said absolutely not necessary,,......just be careful!

So if you are unsure ...ask the person treating you...if we rely on the graphs we read......a helluva lot of us will (a) probably not have a clue and (b) scare ourselves into unnecessary Shielding.

There was initially a thought that steroid injections could not be given but I understand that has changed. All biologics that effect your immune system make you vulnerable. I shielded for months but was told by Scottish Gov that I could stop shielding just take all precautions. I too am on Tocilizumab done 4 injections, I was hoping for a quick result but nothing yet. Steroid injections in the bum do nothing for me so I am taking 5 mg daily by tablet. Good luck X