David from Lethbridge asks: I am being switched from leflunomide to a biologic. Should there be a period of time that I stop the leflunomide prior to starting the new medication?
Whether or not medications can be taken at the same time, close in time, or need a brief break in time, depends on the medications being considered. For leflunomide, it is common to use it at the same time as many biologics. If it is being stopped, there is typically no reason to wait to start the biologic. They should not interfere with each other. For rheumatoid arthritis, it is, in fact, very common to use a number of the disease modifying medications (DMARDs) together, and often in combination with a biologic. For instance, to be on methotrexate, hydroxychloroquine, and sulfasalazine at the same time is a common regimen known as triple therapy. It is also common to be on a regular DMARD while on a biologic. It is not considered safe to be on two biologics at the same time.
Posted: October 7, 2016