Effects of remicade on menstrual cycles

syringe image by Chris Bolton from Fotolia.com

Remicade is the trade name for injected infliximab, a drug used to treat several different types of autoimmune disorders, such as rheumatoid arthritis, Crohn's disease, psoriatic arthritis and ulcerative colitis, among others. While many patients who receive the bimonthly, two-hour infusion report a menu of side effects, the drug has varied effects on some women's menstrual cycle, though the FDA reports they're present in less than 1 per cent of patients on the drug.

Irregular Menstruation

As of July 2010, only 0.02 per cent of women who received Remicade infusions reported irregular menstruation, including delayed cycles, absence of menstruation altogether or unpredictable cycles, according to ehealthme.com respondents. Of those, all had symptoms surface within one month of treatment. The website's data aren't based on clinical studies, however.

Painful Menstruation

A very small amount of patients receiving Remicade infusions--less than 0.02 per cent--report the onset of menstrual cramps while on the drug. As with delayed cycles, menstrual cramps were a side effect with a low enough incidence to discount them from the list of potential side effects in studies by the Federal Drug Administration.

Bruising & Bleeding

Women on Remicade are warned to watch for bruising or non-menstrual bleeding from their vaginas while on Remicade, as well as in other locations, such as their gums, nose or digestive tract. Discolourations and bleeding may indicate a dangerous reaction to the drug and should be reported to your physician immediately.

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