There have been several discussions over the years about joint pain and Gleevec, so I wanted to bump this topic up a bit for some additional input and advice. This is regarding sports injuries, the resulting edema/swelling, and whether Gleevec is having an impact on the ability to heal from said injuries.
Summary of my case and injuries/joint pain I'm dealing with:
- Been on Gleevec 400mg for 3-1/2 years. I'm almost 46 yr old.
- Had a running injury that required ankle surgery two years ago. I have recovered from the surgery, but I continue to get swelling/pain around the posterior tibialis tendon (the tendon that runs down the inside of your ankle and into your foot). I've been through two rounds of PT and plenty of Aleve/naproxen, but it's still a daily issue. I use orthotics, and I gave up running. But it still acts up daily despite continued therapy.
- Had a cycling injury in April that resulted in a swollen/painful right knee (articular cartilage irritation under the patella). However, what would usually take a few weeks to recover from has been 5 months for me - and still no relief! I've been through some PT and have tried to resume some exercise routine but with no success. I just had a cortisone injection in the knee last week, but that's not working either. The sports medicine doc's goal is to get the inflammation down, so the knee will heal up and allow me to resume cycling. But nothing has worked; Aleve, Ibuprofen, and now cortisone. I'm losing hope and am starting to believe that I will live in pretty nasty chronic pain indefinitely (possibly because of the side effects of Gleevec, but I'm not sure).
- I've had MRIs on both my left ankle and right knee - both joints actually look fine (and the ankle surgery was a success) -- just "nonspecific" edema in each joint that imply some minor irritation only. I've had injuries like this pre-CML and was able to recover from them all in just a few weeks after some ibuprofen, ice and rest. But I feel like something has significantly changed post-dx, and I don't think my age is a factor here.
- I've been resting/icing this right knee for months now, and you would think that everything would heal up since there is no detectable damage in the joint. Even the cartilage looks good on the MRI. Just non-specific swelling in one part of the knee, and that continued irritation is not allowing the joint to fully heal up. And despite a powerful cortisone injection, we still can't get the inflammation to subside. It's now got me wondering if Gleevec is adding insult to injury here?
- And yes, the more the hurts and the longer I deal with this problem, the more anxious I get. I am also wondering if anxiety can drive an inflammation response?
- Does the Gleevec edema side effect get amplified in areas of injury/swelling, thus prolonging the healing (potentially indefinitely)? Have others dealt with this?
- For others that suffer from joint pain and Gleevec - is this because of the resulting edema in the joint (Gleevec edema side effect), or is there something else going on that causes the joint pain?
Thanks for your feedback!