Can Methotrexate cause numbness in one side of the body, blurred vision, dizziness, migraines, earache, swallowing problems?

I have had 6 weeks of Methotrexate injections in total: 4 weeks in a row, then a gap of 2 weeks, then 2 more injections and now 2 weeks off. Have had permanent numbness in my right arm for about 2 months, the numbness in the leg started more recently. Keep getting terrible headaches with earache in my left ear, terrible problems with blurry vision and feeling dizzy (constant problem). Recently have been finding it hard to swallow also. Had a migraine with visual aura in early December. Have had x-rays, CT scan, MRI, the doctors have been baffled. Yesterday I wondered could it be drug-induced numbness and is it reversible? Has anyone else had any of these symptoms? I have RA, Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome type 3 hypermobility (connective tissue disorder) and suspected Sjogrens.

Thanks!

Francherry

8 Replies

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  • It might be the Ra I have had arm numbess.. consultant said ooh... carpel tunnel.. bit dismisivially .The eye problems could be migraine either typical or "a typical?"... ear ache can cause dizziness.. labrinthitis oe even menieres.. im not however a DR!.Swallowing can be due to sjorgens as can dry eye.. .

    Im not sure how much called by attributed to the other conditions you suffer from.

    You can check MTx side effects on your patient information leaflet.

  • I'm on injectable MTX but have had none of these. I haven't read that any of these symptoms listed are associated with MTX but then some side effects are very rare and are unique to the individual so I suppose the only way to rule them out would be to stop taking the drug and see if they persist.

    I did get very widespread and powerful pins and needles for 3 weeks in September and after ruling stuff out with all the obvious blood tests and stopping Hydroxichloraquine for a few weeks my rheumy decided that it was due to active RA and switched me to injectable MTX which seems to be working well for me.

    Maybe these are more to do with your connective tissue problems and Sjogrens but as with Summer I'm no doctor. Tilda x

  • Hi, I suffer from all these symptoms too. Mostly RA connected had all the scans etc too. After a break of 3 yrs from metho and starting it back I have noticed it aggravates and heightens my migraines , numbness and pins and needles. I manage them with taking almotriptan and try to keep my water and folic acid intake up at all times. I think migraines are unfortunately a side effect for us prone to them and the numbness and tingling goes with our disease too. Always speak to your doc though, being worried or anxious wont help.... From one who knows!!! Happy new year too xx

  • Hi Francherry

    I know how you feel about the numbness, I have it down my right side. I have had x-rays and an MRI scan, which has confirmed that I have a trapped nerve, caused by a slipped disc in my neck. My neck is painful, but I don't feel the mtx when I inject it on my numb side, which is a bonus. This has been going on for 4 months. And only yesterday I went to see my consultant in neurology, who explained it could be the RA and wear and tear. I will also be having an operation in 3 weeks time to sort out the slipped disc. which will be a relief.

    I have however been on Mtx for over a year now and haven't had any side effects, so I don't think it was that, which may have caused it. If I were you I would keep on about it to your GP and your RA consultant. And don't worry.

  • Good luck with you op, I had mine 4 weeks ago. axx

  • Hi allannah, how did the op go? Was you in hospital for very long? I was told I would only be in for a few days. And one more question, was it painful afterwards? Shaznay xx

  • With those kind of sensations I would think it would be essential that you get checked out by a neurologist. It might be drug-related, but it could be something completely different as well. At the very least you should probably have a neurological examination (testing reflexes, sensation and coordination), and if anything odd is seen in that, then I'd think they should probably send you for a brain MRI to rule out anything serious.

    I did have a friend who had similar stuff though, and she finally got diagnosed with hemiplegic migraine, which seemed a bit odd at the time as she virtually never had headache with it. But "migraines" don't always involve headache (you can get abdominal migraine too).

  • Hi everyone

    Thank you so much for all your replies - really appreciated! I actually went to A&E today because the numbness spread throughout my body (but felt more pronounced on the right hand side, including the face). They did the bloods which showed there wasn't any methotrexate left in my blood (I last had it a few weeks ago). The dr actually thought it was likely to be 'migraine phenomenon' which apparently you can get with or without a headache, but agreed with me it was unusual to have consistent numbness for over a month. He did not seem to think it was mtx-related but will see the rheumatologist on Friday to talk about it. Seeing a dr tomorrow so will ask to be referred to a neurologist. Will let you know when I have a definite answer!

    Happy new year and thanks again,

    Francherry

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