About Lupus

Jessica’s Coping with Lupus Corner

Learnings About Lupus Medications

Jessica Rowshandel, M.S.W.
Jessica, Rowshandel, M.S.W.
Director of Social Services
S.L.E. Lupus Foundation

I get a lot of phone calls from people with lupus about medication. Many are worried about side effects, or simply want to better understand what has been prescribed to them. Thanks to Dr. Irene Blanco, helping them become empowered with concrete and easy-to-understand information about common lupus medication has become much easier. Earlier this year, during Lupus Awareness Month in May, she hosted a webinar for us called Making Sense of Your Lupus Medication.

For those who missed the webinar or want to watch it again, please visit our website at http://www.lupusny.org/programs/support-services/lupus-webinar-archive. It is available in both English and Spanish. You can learn a lot about the purpose of each medication and tips on how to monitor and counteract possible side effects. Dr. Blanco reviews the following medications:

  • Predisone (steroid therapy)
  • Plaquenil (hydroxycholoriquine)
    Imuran (azathioprine)
  • Methotrexate (omeprazole)
    Cellcept (mycophenolate mofetil)
  • Cytoxan (cyclophosphamide)
    Benlysta (belimumab)

Although I talk and hear about lupus every day, I picked up new information from this webinar. For example:

  • While Cytoxan, a very strong medication, has more side effects if taken in pill form versus intravenously, both forms work the same way.
  • Oral ulcers could be a result of lupus, but also could be a side effect of methotrexate.
  • Methotrexate (also known by brand names Rheumatrex,Trexall) must be taken with folic acid.
  • Because steroids could cause stomach ulcers, one could take medicines like Prilosec (omeprazole) to help prevent the ulcers.

Since the presentation is online, it can be accessed anywhere, worldwide through a computer with Internet and sound. Hope you tune in!

Visit our website for other simple suggestions, print brochures, catch up on our past webinars to learn more about lupus and share the information on your social media pages.

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Disclaimer: This website and its contents are designed for educational purposes only. Jessica Rowshandel, MSW is the S.L.E. Lupus Foundation’s Director of Social Services. She is not a physician. The advice provided is for educational and informational purposes and the Foundation does not recommend or endorse any particular treatment or therapy. The information provided here should not be used for the purposes of diagnosing or treating a medical or psychiatric illness. It is not intended to be a substitute for professional care. Lupus is a very individualized illness; consult a healthcare professional before making any decisions about your care. If you have or suspect you may have a health problem, you should consult your health care provider. Telephone calls, emails, and online content do not constitute counseling services in any way. The S.L.E. Lupus Foundation does not provide any medical or psychological services to its patients and users. For an accurate medical or mental health evaluation, participants should seek an evaluation from a qualified healthcare professional. S.L.E. Lupus Foundation employees, consultants, and agents shall not be liable for any claims or damages, and expressly disclaim all liability of any nature for any action or non-action taken as a result of the information generated by the S.L.E. Lupus Foundation programs and its website, as well as the S.L.E. Lupus Foundation Facebook and Twitter pages.