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I Drank and Took Methotrexate When I Was a Teen
from Sarah

Hey.  My name is Sarah and I live in Georgia. I am 19 years old. What I am wondering about is methotrexate.

When I was 16 I started on methotrexate injections. I was going through a rough time and starting drinking very heavily. I didn’t know the risks that involved methotrexate and alcohol together. The doctor never said anything about it, I guess because I was so young he didn’t figure I might drink.

Well, I was on methotrexate and drinking heavily nearly every day for a year. I got regular blood tests and they all seemed fine.

When I was 18 I got pregnant and that is when I stopped the methotrexate and the drinking. All the blood tests and check-ups I got while I was pregnant seemed fine, too.

But I still get scared about it when I think of the damage I may have caused back then.  I guess what I’m wondering is, is it possible for me to have done all that drinking while I was on methotrexate and not gotten cirrhosis?

From the different articles I have been reading on the net lately, it sounds like there is no way I could have not developed cirrhosis.  They all say how dangerous it is.  But I feel fine.  Would you please give me your opinion on this?

*****

Ed’s Response:  The liver is a resilient organ, Sarah, and it sounds as though your age and otherwise good health bulwarked it against the abuse.  However, I would share your concerns with your derm or GP and ask if a liver biopsy may be in order.  If you did have liver disease — even in a fairly early stage — it is likely SOME symptom would show up in a blood work up; but unfortunately sometimes only an actual tissue biopsy will be definitive.  Good luck!  -Ed

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