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Myasthenia Gravis

Immuran vs Cyclosporine

07/25/2001

Question:

I have been on Prednisone for over 10 months and my Dr. is going to take me off the drug and give me either Immuran or Cyclosporine. If there is a choice which one would be better?

Answer:

The choice between Imuran (azathioprine) and cyclosporine (Neoral, Sandimmune)is dependent on your particular condition and other medical problems. Imuran is not effective for 6 to 9 months. Ten percent of patients treated Imuran develop of flu-like reaction to the drug and it needs to be discontinued in the first months of treatment. Imuran may effect liver function and this requires monitoring. Cyclosporine requires 3-6 months to begin to take effect, but may produce high blood pressure and affect kidney function (this also requires monitoring). Patients of mine have improved with either of these medications.

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Response by:

Henry J Kaminski, MD Henry J Kaminski, MD
Formerly, Professor of Neurology
School of Medicine
Case Western Reserve University