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Thread: Rituxan and infections

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    Default Rituxan and infections

    I have had 20 Rtx infusions since 2012. It seems like after I have an infusion, I get some kind of an infection and have to be put on antibiotics. I am wondering if when this happens, does that cancel out the effects of Rtx? I have never asked my Doctor about this, but it seems to me that it would take some of the power away from the Rtx. I also noticed that my B cells never just bottom out, in which I unstood that they are supposed to.
    I maybe way off track here, but I am wondering if there is something that I just don't get. Please let me know what you all think of this. Thanks!
    Jana


    Do not fear anything, just do it afraid!
    It does not matter how slowly you go, as long as you do not stop!


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    Default Re: Rituxan and infections

    Hi jana. Sorry for your infection. Same case here. After each rtx IV I get some infections and or viruses. During the first years it was more UTI's and I was on maintenance of antibiotics for months. I also had lungs infection after the rtx before the last one. After the last one I only got throat infection. I dont think that antibiotics disturb the rtx from working. I can clearly tell when it works on me and calm down the WG, no matter how many antibiotics I take.
    Sending you prayers for speedy recovery.
    Alysia
    dx 2008


    Here, in this forum, I have found my sweet eternal love, my beautiful Phil.. :
    https://www.wegeners-granulomatosis.com/forum/threads/4238-pberggren-memorial-thread
    "You are my sunshine", he used to sing to me... "you make me happy, when skies are grey" I still answer him.
    Rest in Peace, my brave Batman and take care of your weggies from heaven, until we meet again.

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    Default Re: Rituxan and infections

    Alysia,
    Thank you for responding to my concerns. I know that I do get to feeling better eventually, but sometimes it is a long road. I also have usually had UTI's after infusions and have to take rounds of antibiotics. This is all a vicious cycle and gets so tiring. Thanks for your prayers. I hope you are doing well my friend.
    Jana


    Do not fear anything, just do it afraid!
    It does not matter how slowly you go, as long as you do not stop!


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    Default Re: Rituxan and infections

    I am fortunate I don't seem to get infections after my RTX infusions and my B cells actually go to 0

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    Default Re: Rituxan and infections

    I get a monthly inhalation treatment of pentamadine antibiotic (I'm allergic to sulfa). I thought that everyone on RTX had to be on some antibiotic since the Rituximab depletes immune system and makes you susceptible to infections.

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    Default Re: Rituxan and infections

    Quote Originally Posted by John S View Post
    I thought that everyone on RTX had to be on some antibiotic since the Rituximab depletes immune system and makes you susceptible to infections.
    Not I, haven't had to have one constantly. So far, I have only been on antibiotics periodically for sinus related infections. Otherwise, all has been good for me!
    MikeG-2012

    "You never know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have"


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    Default Re: Rituxan and infections

    If I can get off pred and stay off it, I’ll be looking to get off bactrim. I believe in only changing one variable at a time when things are going well. When things go badly, then I do whatever it takes to return to stability.
    Pete
    dx 1/11

    "Every day is a good day. Some are better than others." - unknown

    "Take your meds as directed and live your life as fully as you can." - Michael Chacey, MD

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    Default Re: Rituxan and infections

    The on going saga! I am know in the hospital and have gotten a large red, hot,swollen place on my inner thigh. The surgeon cut it open and packed it. They sent a culture to the lab. They said today that it did not show anything. They said that it could have been controlled by the Batruim I take three times a week. I now will have to have it packed everyday for about a month at a wound clinic. It is so deep that he was able to put his index finger down in it.
    I think that I picked it up when I had my repeat colonoscopy and endoscopy for the cancer episode. Good news on the the report for that though. There were more polyps and they removed the ones in my colon, but they weren't of the neuroendocrine tumor type and were benign.The polyps in my stomach are fundic gland polyps and are benign. They took a few for testing, but there are still many in there. My body is producing way to much gastrin, like 10 times more than normal. This is produced by the stomach and pancreas for digestion, it is a hormone.
    On the PET scan my pituitary is enlarged, so I have to have another MRI of that at the end of the month. I thought I would fill you all in while I am a wake!
    Jana


    Do not fear anything, just do it afraid!
    It does not matter how slowly you go, as long as you do not stop!


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    Default Re: Rituxan and infections

    Although the road ahead doesn’t look very smooth, it looks like all of your issues are moving in the right direction.
    Pete
    dx 1/11

    "Every day is a good day. Some are better than others." - unknown

    "Take your meds as directed and live your life as fully as you can." - Michael Chacey, MD

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    Default Re: Rituxan and infections

    Quote Originally Posted by Jaha View Post
    I have had 20 Rtx infusions since 2012. It seems like after I have an infusion, I get some kind of an infection and have to be put on antibiotics. I am wondering if when this happens, does that cancel out the effects of Rtx? I have never asked my Doctor about this, but it seems to me that it would take some of the power away from the Rtx. I also noticed that my B cells never just bottom out, in which I unstood that they are supposed to.
    I maybe way off track here, but I am wondering if there is something that I just don't get. Please let me know what you all think of this. Thanks!
    Hey beautiful Jana,

    Nope. The antibiotic doesn't cancel our the Rituxin.
    The RTX is a biologic agent targeting only B-cells. Another name for it is B-cell ablation. It gets nearly all of them. They are the ones who initiate the attack based on the memory of having had the virus or bacteria before or from previous vaccines. That's where all the memory of our immune system lies. So after treatment, you're essentially a new born baby when it comes to your immune system. It takes your bone marrow about 6-8 months to regenerate new B-cells. There are some stuck in joints and other places they like to hide, so there's always a little leftover from the time before.

    What the treatment does (the part that puts us at risk) is it essentially reboots the computer. Kills any B-cells that thought that your healthy blood vessels were dangerous agents, and it's starting the reprogramming from scratch. It also makes us super vulnerable to infections. Even a mild flu can cause problems where your body is so overtaxed fighting the virus that bacteria can get in and then it's trouble. So taking antibiotics after an RTX treatment is not only not a bad thing, it's actually kind of a good thing because you get a little extra protection from potentially opportunistic bacterial infections.

    I use to think (based on discussions here) that taking preventative measures for colds and flus might be counterproductive to our treatment. I've since changed my opinion. I have what I call my 'magic bullet' and I'll take it a few times in a row if I feel the need, and I know it only helps temporarily and doesn't affect the overall treatment. (My magic bullet is 2 oregano oil pills, 2 1000mg Vitamin C, and two 1000IU Vitamin D - above the two I take daily.)

    Frett not. The treatment is a big picture thing and is doing it's thing behind the stage. I think taking care of avoiding, and if not then dealing with infections as quick as possible is top priority because in the 'Risk Benefit' part of our treatment, infection is the most dangerous thing we have to worry about once on treatment.

    I hope that explained it and didn't make it more convoluted. I'm not great at expressing my ideas clearly and concisely. I'm working on it though.

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