Well, I’ve had two colonoscopy exams this year and they are still showing mild to moderate UC up to about 25cm. I have been getting remicade infusions for four years now so my Doc decided to send me up to the Melissa L Posner Institute for Digestive Health and Liver disease at Mercy Hospital in Baltimore, MD. I went and had a good discussion with the doctor and I decided that we would try methotrexate injections once a week in addition to the remicade to see if we can get me to go into remission. It turns out that methotrexate is widely used to treat Rhuematoid Arthritis (brand name Rhuematrex). Well, rhuematrex is given as an oral tablet. However, due to possible intestinal side effects and the fact that we don’t necessarily absorb things well in our intestinal tracts, Crohns and Colitis people have to give themselves a subcutaneous injection to take methotrexate. The other issue with the drug is that it can be hard on the liver, so you must go for blood draws every two weeks to monitor that and YOU MUST ABSTAIN from ALCOHOL. As a winemaker, brewer, and wine and beer connoisseur that was kind of a bummer. So, I decided not to start the medication until after my trip to Aruba – I wanted to be able to sample some tropical drinks. I also had some trouble getting a local doctor to train me on how to do the injections myself so I had to go back to Baltimore to get them to show me. And, that was fortunate because it turns out that I was running around with a staff infection in my skin and the doctor said no methotrexate or remicade until I got that cleared up. A two week course of Bactrim did the the trick and I started methotrexate September 13th and have done two injections so far. I was told that the course is 12 weeks and then I will have another colonoscopy to see how it is working (#3 this year!). So, I have to figure out the logistics of having that done in Baltimore which is 100 miles away. So far, I have only noticed slight nausea a day or two after the injection. I also had a remicade infusion 1 week ago and noticed that it seemed much more effective at shutting down my symptoms – I am feeling pretty good right now with 4-5 bathroom trips a day. I will blog more as the treatment progresses to let people know how it is working.
UC patient since 2002.