methotrexate - oral (cont.)
USES: Methotrexate is used to treat certain types of cancer or to control severe psoriasis or rheumatoid arthritis that has not responded to other treatments. It may also be used to control juvenile rheumatoid arthritis. Methotrexate belongs to a class of drugs known as antimetabolites. It works by slowing or stopping the growth of cancer cells and suppressing the immune system.Early treatment of rheumatoid arthritis with more aggressive therapy such as methotrexate helps to reduce further joint damage and to preserve joint function.OTHER This section contains uses of this drug that are not listed in the approved professional labeling for the drug but that may be prescribed by your health care professional. Use this drug for a condition that is listed in this section only if it has been so prescribed by your health care professional.This medication may also be used for lupus and psoriatic arthritis.
HOW TO USE: Read the Patient Information Leaflet if available from your pharmacist before you start taking methotrexate and each time you get a refill. If you have any questions, ask your doctor or pharmacist.Methotrexate is a strong medication. The dosage and how often you take this medication are based on your medical condition and response to treatment. There are many different dosing schedules for this medication (especially for cancer treatment). Therefore, it is very important that you follow your doctor's instructions carefully. Take this medication by mouth as directed by your doctor.For the treatment of psoriasis or rheumatoid arthritis, take this medication by mouth as directed by your doctor, usually once a week. It may take up to several months before you get the full benefit of this drug.Do not increase your dose or use this drug more often or for longer than prescribed. Your condition will not improve any faster, and your risk of side effects will increase.Since this drug can be absorbed through the skin and lungs and may harm an unborn baby, women who are pregnant or who may become pregnant should not handle this medication or breathe the dust from the tablets.Drink plenty of fluids while taking this medication unless your doctor tells you otherwise. Doing so helps your kidneys to remove the drug from your body and avoid some of the side effects.
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