Steroids, hot flushes and black cohosh!

Hi all

As most of you already know i'm still clueless about meds lol!

I'm back on my leflunomide 20mg but also still on steroids, one 5mg tablet of prednisolone and as i'm still having horrendous hot flushes day and night i was wondering if i could take black cohosh?

I'm not sure what to check on labels and have given up with rheumy nurses at the minute cos they never return my calls!

Any help greatly appreciated.

Jo

Xxxx

5 Replies

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  • Hi there black cohosh can alter your liver enzymes. You could try RED CLOVER. I have used it

  • Hi Jo,

    I'm most likely going over ground you've traveled already but .... re the hot flushes: have you tried cutting out coffee & maybe other caffeine drinks?

    My body is pretty much straight down the line with this: coffee = tremendous hot flushes, no coffee = occasional hot flushes usually brought on by wearing a certain jumper!

    (Wine has the same effect I think but MTX has ruined my drinking career).

    Christina xx

  • I agree with Watson, the RA drugs are hard on your liver so you have to be especially careful. Black cohosh may affect it, so best not to take it. Polly

  • Hello Jo, I really do sympathise with the hot flushes but, like the others, I would say to avoid Black Cohosh. I took red clover for a while with no ill effects but I think it would be well worth checking with the pharmacist first about possible interactions. If you think your hot flushes are menopause related (rather than steroid related), you might light to try Googling "Maryon Stewart", a doctor who has done a lot of work on managing menopause symptoms nutritionally and has written some books outlining nutritional programmes you can follow at home. The book I bought was "Cruising through the Menopause". I followed one of her diet programmes for a while and it improved things hugely for me, hot flush wise, but then they came back with a vengeance and I reluctantly resorted to HRT. Hope you find something which helps you.

    Tillyx

  • Herbal remedies are still drugs, can be quite strong, and can have strong interactions. If you'd like to try them you would need to check with your doctor.

    Also, in my experience herbal remedies for menopause can sometimes swing your hormone balance the wrong way and actually make things worse. Some herbals push the oestrogen-progesterone balance one way, and some the other. Its less of a big deal to try them if you aren't taking any other meds.

    Are you meant to be staying on that level of pred, or continuing to reduce it? If a reduction is planned anyway, maybe you should just push on with that and hope you can get off it reasonably soon (though not too fast that your symptoms return too quickly). As Tilly says, there is a lot you can do nutritionally, and a lot of non-medical hints and tips you can use to feel more comfortable. Caffeine is a biggie though, and so is alcohol, so cutting that right out (including cola drinks and some other sodas) should help a lot.

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