Over the past few years, it seems that a little drug called plaquenil has become one of the major players when it comes to treating lupus. Not only are the side-effects minimal, it's believed that this drug can help reduce joint pain, fevers and fatigue, as well as inflammation, and that it can keep the disease under control and minimize flares. Note, for more severe lupus activity, plaquenil may not be sufficient.
It seems that most lupus patients I meet are currently taking or have taken some dose of plaquenil, me included. You can check out my previous prescriptions 101 post about plaquenil for more information about my experience with the drug.
Currently, plaquenil is working just fine for me - no side-effects, no flares...so all is well. In the past, however, I have had periods where the drug wasn't sufficient, and I also experienced that rare (very rare) side effect involving retinal changes that prompted my opthamologist to recommend that I suspend using the drug for a period of time. My eyes returned to normal, I stayed off of the drug for almost 3 years, and I haven't had any trouble since going back on the drug over three years ago. Fingers crossed - plaquenil is again in my good graces!
Since many of us have experience with the drug, I thought I'd post the poll at the right to see just how the drug measures up. Take a moment to answer the questions at the right - and see the company you're keeping when it comes to plaquenil!