Tecfidera How to minimize or Eliminate Side Effects

Discuss Tecfidera (BG-12, dimethyl fumarate) as an oral treatment for multiple sclerosis.

Re: Tecfidera How to minimize or Eliminate Side Effects

Postby Barry » Fri Jul 12, 2013 4:00 pm

Thanks Ladymac and everyone else for your 1st hand accounts.

All we've got is each other.

Best,

Barry
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Re: Tecfidera How to minimize or Eliminate Side Effects

Postby travis842 » Fri Jul 12, 2013 5:57 pm

Ladymac wrote:I don' t know if taking pepto with the pill would render some compromise of the medication. Pepto contains Bismuth which is a very strong neutralizer, I would think the pill with the meal and then after a couple hours if you need something like pepto it would help settle the stomach and not inactivate some of the ingredients. Just my opinion, I am not a doctor.


Thanks good point Lm. I could try another way and see what will make Tecfidera easier to take. I have tried many costly things but will try again. Back to the old drawing board. :wink:
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Re: Tecfidera How to minimize or Eliminate Side Effects

Postby MissKatie » Sun Jul 14, 2013 8:27 am

Before I started this drug, I started taking probiotics. Because they have helped with my fatigue and headaches, I have continued them. I wonder if that is why I have minimal side effects with the tecfidera? Of course, I have only been on the tecfidera two weeks. I know the symptoms will get worse. Wasn't this drug used for RA? What did those patients do to alleviate the negative side effects?
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Re: Tecfidera How to minimize or Eliminate Side Effects

Postby Ladymac » Mon Jul 15, 2013 5:36 am

Hi Miss Kate,

Not the same med for RA, it is different. Check out my original post on this topic re: diet and timing of the meds, etc. You should be good to go.

Good Luck,
Blessings,

Ladymac
RRMS diagnosed 2006
Tecfidera Started April 2013
:)
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Re: Tecfidera How to minimize or Eliminate Side Effects

Postby prauly » Mon Jul 15, 2013 4:51 pm

Thank you for taking the time to post this information. I received the medication today and plan to start it this weekend. I plan to follow your recommendations from the first day. I have one question for you. I see that you take Prevacid each day. Is this recommended to take with the medication, even if someone doesn't have GERD?

I will be sure to share my interactions/progress. Thanks again!
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Re: Tecfidera How to minimize or Eliminate Side Effects

Postby Ladymac » Tue Jul 16, 2013 6:43 am

Hi Prauly,

I take the Prevacid because I have very bad GERD. No, not a recommended med for Tecfidera protocol.

If you are able to follow the timing of your other meds first thing in the AM, including if you are able to take aspirin, take the enteric coated aspirin full strength one (325mg) and then wait an hour and then have your breakfast as described along with your Tecfidera you should be good to go.

Lunch as normal.

Then the other thing is that dinner with the Tecfidera is important, along with don't eat too late so you are laying down within 2 hours of eating and taking your Med that way you will have better digestion and absorption, then take any evening meds that aren't a must with food and at dinner time at bed time allowing a clear sailing is what I did, it is up to you and your doctor (I am not one) for the approved timing of your meds.

Another tip is to not let your stomach get empty in the afternoon. A light snack, crackers with cheese or peanut butter or something to absorb things.

I am without absolutely any side effects. Now in Month #3 and have increased energy and am thinking and processing things better mentally (puzzles, games) and my balance is great, gone from cane to no cane. I am finding that my brain is telling me to do more and my body is out of shape so I have to do things in better moderation so I don't have a sore back or neck, etc., since I haven't used those muscles in a while, am reconditioning through swimming.

Feel free to PM me and Best of Luck! You guys are up for some nasty heat this week, keep hydrated and cool! It is crazy that the Northeast will be hotter than Atlanta!

Blessings and Be Well!
Blessings,

Ladymac
RRMS diagnosed 2006
Tecfidera Started April 2013
:)
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Re: Tecfidera How to minimize or Eliminate Side Effects

Postby staypositive » Tue Jul 16, 2013 9:24 am

I was having horrible stomach pains throughout the process once I started on the full dose twice per day. Thank you Ladymac for your post!!!!!!!!!!!!The results have been night and day. I take an asprin about an hour before I take the pill and I make sure I eat a breakfast with eggs, some vegetables and toast and I am good to go. I also drink some seltzer water if I feel anything popping up and that helps release the air building up in my abdomen.
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Re: Tecfidera How to minimize or Eliminate Side Effects

Postby Ladymac » Tue Jul 16, 2013 3:03 pm

Awesome you are feeling better!
Blessings,

Ladymac
RRMS diagnosed 2006
Tecfidera Started April 2013
:)
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Re: Tecfidera How to minimize or Eliminate Side Effects

Postby candycoffey » Sat Jul 20, 2013 2:32 pm

Thank you again Ladymac! I am now tolerating this medication so much better. Last time I wrote here I was having such a difficult time, I had actually reached the point of dehydration and had to stop for a few days to get myself back to "normal". Since restarting and following the meal ideas it has been a total change. I did still experience the abdominal pain, nausea, vomiting and diarrhea for two days after restarting but only after taking the second dose. Even with that it was over quickly instead of it being for most of the day. I have found that Imodium multi symptom works far better than Pepto and my neuro started me on phenergan to help with the nausea. I'm taking the aspirin as suggested as well and just using simethicone drops when I fell the gas build up. I have only vomited one other time and experienced severe nausea once and I believe I can blame that more on what I ate. I am finding that what I eat really effects if I feel well or not. Previously I never had any sensitivity to certain foods, are more people noticing that too since starting Tecfidera? Anything carbonated will bring a little abdominal pain and I'm noticing a lot of dairy will bring on the nausea so I have cut out sodas and monitoring my dairy intake. I am feeling much more hopeful about being able to continue and tolerate this medication now though.
RRMS Feb 2011
Tecfidera start June 2013
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Re: Tecfidera How to minimize or Eliminate Side Effects

Postby jenf » Sun Jul 21, 2013 8:09 am

I am using the guidelines listed above and have found it to be the best method for reducing the side effects. I do skip the evening antacid, but I've also increased my food intake. I used to eat small meals throughout the day. Now I eat large meals whenever it's tecfidera time! The first week was really tough. I'm glad I stuck it out though... It's only been a few weeks and my body had adjusted well. Thanks to all for their insights!
Jen
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RRMS - dx 06/09
LDN - 4.5mg 06/09-present
Copaxone - 06/10-09/10
Avonex - 06/12-06/12

Late Stage Lyme - 12/10
Too many meds to list!!

Remember, today is the tomorrow you worried about yesterday..
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Re: Tecfidera How to minimize or Eliminate Side Effects

Postby Ladymac » Sun Jul 21, 2013 10:48 am

Hi Jen,

AWESOME that you are doing well. I have been able to cut back on quantity of food without any issues now, in month 3. Still need the protein, carbs, etc., but I am eating smaller portions and making sure now that I don't overdo. I am never "hungry" at breakfast, but now I am able to do pancakes or waffles with bacon or french toast. I am going to start adding more fruit and veggies in my diet slowly to see how it goes. I have GERD anyways, so adding acidic things can cause problems, but don't want to get my stomach into acidic condition with the meds either. I will post how things go after I have done it for a week or two.

I am glad you are on the right track with feeling better.

Blessings,
Blessings,

Ladymac
RRMS diagnosed 2006
Tecfidera Started April 2013
:)
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Re: Tecfidera How to minimize or Eliminate Side Effects

Postby alexanderps » Mon Jul 22, 2013 7:32 am

I have been taking Tecfidera for probably two months now. My biggest issue is the flush which feels more like heat and rash to me than just flushing. It varies when it happens. Sometimes a couple hours afterwards and sometimes several hours afterwards. I do have a little stomach upset but nothing crazy. My husband heard on Public Radio that Archway Coconut Macaroons were a home remedy for diarrhea and brought some home the day I began the medicine. I prescribed myself :-D two cookies a day...and I have to say that I think it helped. Again, even when I don't eat the cookies I still don't have a lot of issues with the digestive side effects so I can't speak to whether it will work for those of you experiencing greater symptoms but I thought it was worth tossing out there. Hope things get better for you!
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Re: Tecfidera How to minimize or Eliminate Side Effects

Postby jenf » Mon Jul 22, 2013 8:06 am

Have you tried the methods listed in the first post by Ladymac? It seems to do the trick! My first dose was without anything, and not enough food. I thought it would be my last dose! I was a mess with flushing, burning and itching... followed by a really unhappy stomach. I tried baby asprin for the second with more food, and still had trouble. That's when I came on to TIMS to see what others had tried. One full asprin and one antacid (I take Aciphex) an hour before the dose with a FULL meal is enough to do the trick!!
Jen

RRMS - dx 06/09
LDN - 4.5mg 06/09-present
Copaxone - 06/10-09/10
Avonex - 06/12-06/12

Late Stage Lyme - 12/10
Too many meds to list!!

Remember, today is the tomorrow you worried about yesterday..
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Re: Tecfidera How to minimize or Eliminate Side Effects

Postby MissKatie » Tue Jul 23, 2013 9:04 pm

I followed Dr. Oz's advice for upset stomach and made a ginger tea, which worked like a miracle relieving the nausea and abdominal pain! It was like a switch turning off the pain. I didn't have to change anything else but drink ginger tea instead of coffee in the morning.
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Re: Tecfidera How to minimize or Eliminate Side Effects

Postby travis842 » Wed Jul 24, 2013 2:27 pm

MissKatie wrote:I followed Dr. Oz's advice for upset stomach and made a ginger tea, which worked like a miracle relieving the nausea and abdominal pain! It was like a switch turning off the pain. I didn't have to change anything else but drink ginger tea instead of coffee in the morning.

Thanks Mk
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