Antimalarial Medicines for Lupus
How Well It Works
A review of several studies shows that antimalarials reduce overall disease activity. They may have several other effects, including reducing disease flares and protecting organs such as the kidneys.Reference 1
Antimalarial medicine is used with corticosteroid creams to control lupus skin rash, and it has long been used to control lupus-related joint pain.Reference 2 For skin rash, this treatment works best when it is combined with protecting the skin from the sun.
Hydroxychloroquine seems to help reduce fatigue and malaise (generally not feeling well). But it can take a few months to notice this effect.Reference 3
Hydroxychloroquine may protect against lupus disease flares.Reference 2
Antimalarials are likely to help joint pain and reduce inflammation of the sac around the heart and the sac around the lungs.Reference 4