question on folic acid

Hi everyone, probably a silly question, but i have run out of 5 mg of folic acid, i now need to take one every day due to the side affects of the MTX, that is why i have run out, silly women i am, i should of checked i had enough, well my hubby has gone to Tesco's and picked me up some folic acid of 400 mcg, is this the same if not how much should i take, it does say 1 a day but the measurement seem different, Thank you XXXX

20 Replies

  • it is 400 micro gram thats why you can buy it!! the precribed one is 5mg(milligram) its very different its about 10 ten times weaker than the prescribed one!, One of the weaker ones is better than nothing until you can get sorted. you dont take it on mtx day any way.. the best thing would be to get a prescription for the correct strength on monday... you wont come to any harm if you take either one weaker folic or no folic for the weekend. It is important to keep any eye on how much medication you have realising on a saturday that you have run out isnt the best day of the week to do this.

    An out of hours Gp could be willing to write a prescription for you or your regular pharmacy could do an emergency supply doubt they are open on a sunday unless they are a supermarket pharmacy however.

    Also folic acid should be taken in the morning..( I asume thats when you take it?)

  • Thanks summer i was really surprised i didn't think that the strength would of been that much, And yes i do take them in the morning, well today was my MTX day, so i didn't need to take one, i have got 2 left so i will be ok until Tuesday and my doctors are really good with the repeated prescriptions, I just though being my lovely husband brought them,( i think he was a bit worried that i would run out) Than waste them i could take them, Thank you XXXX

  • no disaster then thats good I think you have a lovely caring husband x

  • Hi. I have only just found this site & have just spent the last few days reading everyones blogs. I went to visit my son a while back & realised I'd forgotten my Folic Acid. I called my gp who told me to take 13 of the shop bought ones to make up for the one I should have taken!

    Hope this helps :)

  • the maths is about right 13x 400mcg is more or less equivalent to one 5mg it becomes 5.2mg to be precise , I Would err on side of caution if you want to go doen this route and take 12?, if you get confused with meds I Would prefer you to wait to monday or get an emergency prescription

  • Thanks, well i have only just had them increased ,so even if i miss a couple of days i don't think it will hurt, Well i thought i would have to take a few more, but not many, it just shows how strong our drugs are, it can be quite worrying Take care xx

  • I've come two weeks late to this Shirl but I don't think Folic is a drug as such - it's a mineral and you can't overdose I was told by my GPs and the pharmacist and the rheumy. The only harm that might be done is to lessen the effectiveness of the MTX so it's a delicate balance that is individual to each person taking it. There are no hard and fast rules but if you take more than you need then it just flushes out regardless I was told. Tilda x

  • The longer I take the drugs the less efficient I am at ordering them on time. Plus the dispensary at the surgery I go to seems to be in meltdown most of the time - I daren't do anything confusing like ask for a prescription to be turned around quicker in case they implode. It's all getting a bit precarious!

    Glad I'm not the only one who has these problems & glad you got some good advice, Shirl.

    Luce x

  • Were you taking 5 mg a day of the folic acid? That sounds like an enormous amount to me, especially if you went from 5mg on one day of the week straight to 5 mg every day..

    The overthecounter ones are definitely a whole lot less strong. If you can't get a new prescription quickly, then I've found that most pharmacies will give you an emergency supply of a few pills if you can show that you have run out, and have either a prescription record or the box or bottle.

  • 5mg is standard dose.

  • OK

  • i thought the same, but because i was getting some really bad side affects sometimes with 15 mg, and they were increasing my meds to 20 mg, that was why they decided to increase them to every day, except the MTX day of course, but this was another rheumy nurse i spoke to as mine was on holiday, when she returns if she feels it is to much i am sure she might dropped the dose down, But today i took my 20 mg of MTX and so far i have had no side affects, so i am feeling really good about that, My doctors are really good at respect prescriptions, i so wished that ever doctors was like mine, Take Care and thanks XX

  • I use to take 1 folic acid a week. I told my consultant that I had noticed my hair looking thinner. He told me to increase it to 1 a day, I asked about taking it on MTX days and he said it made no difference at all, so said to take it that day as well.

    I get my drugs from Boots, they do all the ordering and fetching the prescriptions for me. I simply pick up my drugs from the chemist, tick what I want the next time and they then tell me when to pick them up. They are always waiting for me when I next go to pick them up, I find their service very good.

    Paula x

  • i suggested this one huor before paula? this site has a mind of its own on comment least we suggest the same thing x

  • Another option is to take your prescription to a larger chemist eg boots or lloyds pharmacy chain or similar in future they offer repeat prescrition re order service and can do this for you, as with RA there is lot to deal with, its easier for me with prescriptions as it is my job!! but hospitals do not"cash" green prescriptions ( these are called FP10S) The funding is different hospitals have their own in/ outpatient prescriptions , GP prescriptions are sent off to the pricing payment authority from your local chemist every month(end off) for reimbursement for drugs cost.

  • I'm not sure you can always do this when you have a dispensing GP practice. I know we can't, and its only on very rare occasions they will give you an actual prescription form to take to another chemist. We are lucky though in that we have a special "prescription order line" where we can phone our requests to a dedicated number - which means I can do it when I remember at 11 pm if necessary!

  • You still should in theory have the right my gp now has a pharmacy but I TAKE mine else were patient choice..

  • i keep forgeting to take mine ,, suppose to take "1 per day over 6 days " so ive always got plenty spare ... how many you want ,,shirl ?? put kettle on , ill bring some round :) two sugars .. :) xx

  • Thank you Andy, 2 sugars!!! I think you are sweet enough :)))) xx

  • I have to take 5mg a day and have been for 4 months as my folic acid was low.Used to even have to take them on MTX day as well.Have stopped the MTX now after 4 months but still having to take 5mg a day.

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