Well, today is the 10th day I’ve been on Arava. Unlike people who use Arava as their primary RA medication and take 20 mg/day, I use it in conjunction with Enbrel and only take 10 mg/day.
It normally takes 4-5 weeks to see any benefit and I can attest to the fact that I’m seeing little, if any change. My hair hasn’t started falling out yet, which I understand is a side effect. (One that I’m hoping to avoid as I’m on the lower dosage.)
The bursitis in my right hip might be a bit better, but it also might be just time for it to resolve itself, as most bursitis issues do. I’ve had it since last fall and I’m thinking that 6-7 months of it is more than I care to enjoy.
One difference I’ve noticed is that I’m really, really tired all the time. Methotrexate used to wipe me out when I took it. I’d be completely zonked out when I took it Friday evening, and I’d lose at least half of Saturday as well. As Arava is similar to MTX, I’m wondering if this daily dose isn’t causing the fatigue.
On another note I saw a commercial for Cymbalta which is now been approved for chronic musculoskeletal pain, including that caused by osteoarthritis. I wonder if we might see some RA doctors prescribe it as well. Since it’s not an NSAID, which I can’t take, it might be worth a try. My major complaint isn’t joint swelling as much as pain, so if I could get that relieved, I’d be much, much happier.
I’ll keep you posted as I move forward with Arava. If this doesn’t improve things, we’re going to try something altogether new, so we’ll see.
Hope whatever you try today is successful. Thanks for checking in.