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Taking Medication when not in pain?
#229206 03/09/12 12:47 AM
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DCallow Offline OP
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Hi everyone,

First post on the boards. I had a question about how people take their medication when they have no pain whatsoever.

Generally I have pain in my lower back and general weakness in assorted areas depending on the day, however there are some days (especially after days when I have exercised), where I feel little to no pain at all. Maybe it's because I'm hoping I can just get off the medication once and for all and try and beat it with just pure exercise and diet.

I also hear the stories about how the medication (I take medication called Arthrotec 75MG) affects the stomach lining.
Just wanted to know whether you all take medication every day on a routine basis regardless of the level of pain or whether you take it regularly during a flare-up.

Thanks!

Re: Taking Medication when not in pain?
DCallow #229215 03/09/12 02:16 AM
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I used to take Advil only when I had a very bad pain and could barely walk for almost a year. I was also excercising and trying to lead a healthy life. However, once I met with my rheumy he told me to take naproxen every day. I guess this way you control your disease, reduce inflammation and don't have flare ups.

Right now I still have aches and pains, but (fingers crossed) did not have a flare up for more than a month.So I guess it works.

I'm also very concerned about side effects. I can already feel changes in my stomach. I will start one of the TNFs soon and that medication have even worse side effects. I think every medication you take can have a negative effect on your body, cause its not natural. I just got diagnosed and I'm super scared of having spinal fusion, or becoming disabled in the future,hence I'm going to try the medication. If I knew that exercise 100% prevents fusion and progression I would continue on that, cause I really noticed the benefits of exercise in terms of pain and quality of life.

B


Age 27, Spondyloarthritis Feb'12,
Naproxen



Re: Taking Medication when not in pain?
bunny738 #229221 03/09/12 03:32 AM
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Some people do have drug-free remissions, sometimes for extended periods. Doctors tend to say that it is better to stay on the NSAID even if you have a good day, otherwise you could have rebound inflammation when the drug wears off. I don't know if thsi is true, but you'll know better than me from own experience.

You can take a proton pump inhibitor like omeprazole with your NSAID to protect your stomach.

No drug has yet been proved to prevent fusion anyway, although it does make sense that if you can nip inflammation in the bud with meds it might help. Studies still don;t give a definite answer.

For most people, TNFs are safer than NSAIDs. NSAIDs affect many more organ systems (gut, kidneys, liver, cardiovascular system, blood pressure, adrenals), in most cases subclinically, but even so harm is still being done. It is really a question if it is helping more than harming. I do take some naproxen on top of my Enbrel on and off because it gives just that little extra bit of relief, but it does worry me. I would prefer to be on the Enbrel alone.

Last edited by seekonk; 03/09/12 03:37 AM.

Spondylitis since '08, finally diagnosed Feb '11.
Enbrel 50mg/week.
Re: Taking Medication when not in pain?
seekonk #229225 03/09/12 04:28 AM
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I take an NSAID (Relafen), an immunomodulator/DMARD (Plaquenil), and a proton pump inhibitor (Omeprazole) everyday. I also have pain everyday, but to varying degrees. If I miss a dose of either anti-inflammatory medication (Relafen & Plaquenil), I regret it before the day is through. I take Omeprazole to protect my stomach from the Relafen, but also because I have terrible acid reflux. It helps with both. I'm also on Enbrel once weekly, but it hasn't kicked in yet, assuming it will. That being said, I was on the same medications throughout the entire time that Humira was working. I always hoped to be able to remove one or more of my oral medications, but alas, they all play their role for me. I already have a gastrointestinal condition, so my chronic use of NSAIDs concerns me, but I don't know what to do about it at the moment. I tried 7 other NSAIDs before I settled on this one that I tolerate without GI upset so long as I take it with food and Omeprazole.


Mary, 25, happily married pro photographer, momma to 2 great danes.
Dx: Psoriatic Arthritis, Fibromyalgia, Psoriasis, Sjogren's, IBS, Hiatal Hernia, & possible Endometriosis.
Meds: Stelara, Methotrexate, Relafen, Omeprazole, Lyrica, Tizanidine, Voltaren Gel, Tramadol
Re: Taking Medication when not in pain?
iviary #229480 03/12/12 06:10 PM
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DCallow,

Welcome! Sorry you have to be here, but we are glad to have you!

I am sorry but I don't really have any answers to your question. I always have pain and I don't take medication regularly. I have currently decided not to treat my AS (probably a dumb decision) but I do take an occasional ibuprofen for the pain.

If you have any more questions, feel free to ask away. I am sure someone will have the answer you are looking for.

Becca


i can't fall back i came too far, hold myself up and love my scars...
Re: Taking Medication when not in pain?
becca #229533 03/13/12 03:33 PM
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If you want to manage your inflammation, it is best to take your NSAID daily. It's true that NSAIDs can cause side effects - all drugs can - but untreated inflammation from this disease can cause problems, too, even if you are asymptomatic.

Diclofenac (the NSAID in Arthrotec) is one of the worst NSAIDs as far as side effects go. Maybe your doc can try some others with you. Diclofenac worked for me but it also gave me dyspepsia (I too was taking Arthrotec.) I have tried 7 or 8 NSAIDs so far to find one that optimized effectiveness and side effects. Meloxicam works reasonably well for me, with no side effects - but everyone is different!

If you just want to take your Arthrotec as an occasional pain med, that is fine, but that sort of use won't suppress the inflammation that is causing the pain.


Jen, 42, happy partner of James and Moma to Evan, 14, & Lucy, 12.5 (Crohn's dx @ age 3; on Remicade since April 2010.) I take piroxicam, Flexeril, & Nucynta ER nightly. 3 anti-TNFs didn't pan out for me.

"Science is the father of knowledge, but opinion breeds ignorance." -- Hippocrates
Re: Taking Medication when not in pain?
JenInCincy #232995 05/09/12 11:02 AM
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I too take diclofenac (same general kind of thing that you have: Arthrotec is the tradename for the combination diclofenac/misoprostol), is the primary drug I've been having for four years now.

I also am very very cautious about the idea of what it can do to my stomach lining.

So while I used to take it 3 times a day (as I NEEDED that much then, plus there is evidence to show consistently taking it beneficial), now I only take it about once per day. And some days I don't take it at all.

So I certainly am trying my very hardest to limit how much diclofenac I take (and switching to a no carb diet has MASSIVELY helped in reducing how much medication I need to take).


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