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Two days ago, on Monday, I completed my third and final “loading” dose of Remicade leading into the regular schedule of an infusion every six weeks. Because I hadn’t responded to the first two doses, my rheumatologist increased the Remicade from 6 mg/kg to 7 mg/kg (an approximate 16% increase).

This morning I flared. This is not the best sign that the Remicade is or will be working well.

The infusion went well. It was a different infusion nurse and, as much as I liked the first one, I liked this one better. She got the IV started on the first stick (which NEVER happens) and I didn’t have any side effects during the infusion. As I’d had a headache previously I took some Tylenol ahead of time. The infusion did make me very tired and I wound up going home and sleeping the rest of the afternoon.

I did pretty well yesterday, but this morning I woke up at 2:30 with my ankles and wrists severely hurting. Then the “real” flare started and seemed to move from the bottom of my feet up through my knees, hips, back and shoulders. I felt like if I moved, I would cry it hurt so bad. I finally got back to sleep around 5:30 and when I woke up at around 8:00, most of the severe pain had passed although I was very, very stiff and I was still sore when I moved around.

Part of it may be the fact that my prednisone dosage has dropped from 10 mg to 5 mg a day, but it’s still not a good sign to have a flare after having such an intense dose of biologic medication less than 48 hours previously.

My next infusion is scheduled for mid-November with my next rheumatologist appointment in mid-December. However, if I continue to have issues, I’ll move that appointment up earlier. It does take time for biologics to work so I still have hope that I will start showing improvement.

I hope whatever your day holds it brings both health and happiness. Thanks for checking in.

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