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Immunosuppressive Drugs

Sometimes the immune system simply goes wrong and reacts against the cells and tissues of our bodies. When this happens, medications to suppress the immune system become necessary.


Azathioprine (Imuran)
 Immune mediated diseases are conditions where the immune system becomes inappropriately active and damages the body. Azathioprine is a common medication used in the treatment of immune mediated disease. It is a drug to respect and use wisely.
Chlorambucil (Leukeran®)
 A drug used most commonly for chemotherapy to treat cancer, chlorambucil is also used to treat some immune mediated diseases such as pemphigus, feline infectious peritonitis, or inflammatory bowel disease.
Cyclosporine
 Cyclosporine, sometimes referred to as cyclosporin A, is an immunosuppressive agent. Unlike other medications of immune suppression that act by killing cells of the immune system, cyclosporine acts by interfering with helper T-lymphocyte interleukin production.
Dexamethasone (Azium, Voren)
 Dexamethasone is a member of the glucocorticoid class of hormones. This means they are steroids but, unlike the anabolic steroids that we hear about in sports, these are catabolic steroids. Instead of building the body up, they are designed to break down stored resources (fats, sugars and proteins) so that they may be used as fuels in times of stress.
Prednisolone/Prednisone
 Prednisone and prednisolone are members of the glucocorticoid class of hormones. They break down stored resources (fats, sugars and proteins) so that they may be used as fuels in times of stress. We do not use the glucocorticoids for their influences on glucose and protein metabolism; we use them because they are the most broad anti-inflammatory medications that we have.

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