I've had PMR since 2016. I think I have a fairly mild case, but I can't get rid of it! I've tried to get below 8/9 mg of prednisone many times, and it never works. Right now I'm on 8 mg.
My new rheumy ways if have "difficult to treat" PMR, and he's recommending that I take Leflunomide. He says the most common side effect is diarrhea, but I can see it has other side effects including liver damage, loss of hair, and many others.
The strange thing is that I'm feeling quite good even though I'm on 8 mg. of pred. I used to have fatigue but now I'm feeling a lot more energetic. I walk a lot and take "chair yoga" and "chair strength" classes. My hips are stiff when I wake up and they sometimes feel stiff on and off during the day, but it's all quite mild. I hate to make myself sick with Leflunomide when I'm feeling better than I ever have since I came down with PMR.
I have to see my rheumy next week. I'm thinking of suggesting that I try once again to taper to 7.5. The main difference between now and the last time I tried to taper is that I'm feeling a lot better.
As my doctor pointed out, there are no definitive studies on using Leflunomide for PMR, but it looks promising based on some preliminary studies. I found one of these studies online: ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articl....
I really don't want to be on prednisone forever, but I'm afraid of taking Leflunomide. So hard to decide what to do!