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Drug Guide


    Oral / IV
    Weekly dosing
  • Mechanism of Action
  • Inflammatory diseases: inhibits interleukin-1 and interleukin 6 activity, and altering the numbers of different lymphocyte subsets.
  • In cancer treatment: inhibits dihydrofolate reductase (DHFR), reducing synthesis of folate, which is involved in synthesis of the purine and pyramidine precursors required for DNA / RNA and cell proliferation.
  • Pharmacology
  • Serum half-life 8 hours
  • Renal excretion - caution in combination with NSAIDs

Clinical Use

  • Indications
  • Inflammatory diseases - refractory inflammatory bowel disease, rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis
  • Chemotherapy - for certain cancers
  • Adverse Effects
  • Gastrointestinal - mouth ulcers, nausea / vomiting / abdominal pain
  • Hepatotoxicity - elevated LFTs, cirrhosis
  • Pulmonary - hypersensitivity pneumonitis
  • Bone marrow suppression - leukopaenia / thrombocytopaenia / anaemia
  • Monitoring

  • Monthly full blood count, renal function and LFTs.
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