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What can it do?

Welcome to the beta Arthritis Virtual Assistant. At the moment it can give you general information about your condition and medication, and provide you with useful exercises to help manage your arthritis.

Why do we need your help?

The Arthritis Virtual Assistant has been built to learn and improve with every use. That way, whenever you use it, you’re indirectly helping another person get the answers that they need for their arthritis.

What can you ask?

You'll get the best response if your question relates to a single type of arthritis, and is expressed as clearly and simply as possible. For example, "What are the best exercises for osteoarthritis?" or "What are the side effects of methotrexate?"

Are you sure you want to close your conversation?

Your conversation will not be visible the next time you visit the Arthritis Virtual Assistant. If you want to keep a copy of the advice you've been given, you can print it using the button at the top of the chat window.

Arthritis Virtual Assistant

The Arthritis Virtual Assistant is being developed into a brand new type of tool which will help you to get the answers you need for your type of arthritis.

This automated chat service is designed to provide general information about your condition and ways you can manage it. It’s been developed from over 80 years of our research work and also learns from the experiences of its users. It’s a ‘beta’ version which means it’s still learning from you, and others. It uses artificial intelligence to decide which are the best responses to give you and it will improve each time it’s used. The better the information we can provide then the more people we can help to manage their condition too.

The advice in this service isn’t a substitute for professional medical advice so we’d always recommend speaking to your doctor about your treatment. When you use the Arthritis Virtual Assistant, you’ll be asked for your first name and the type of arthritis you have, there’s no need to tell us anything more personal than that.

By using the Arthritis Virtual Assistant you confirm that you understand and accept the terms of use and consent to how we will use the information you provide.

Helpline 0800 5200 520 More information

Call us for free information, help and advice on your type of arthritis.

All calls are recorded for training and quality purposes.
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> > > > What are the possible risks and side-effects of cyclophosphamide?

What are the possible risks and side-effects of cyclophosphamide?

A common side-effect of cyclophosphamide is feeling sick (nausea). Your doctor may prescribe medicine to control this.

Because cyclophosphamide affects your immune system, it can make you more likely to pick up infections. It can also make them harder to spot. Make sure you have your repeat blood tests and tell your doctor or rheumatology nurse straight away if you develop:

  • a sore throat, fever or other signs of infection
  • unexplained bruising or bleeding
  • any other new symptoms that concern you.

You should stop taking cyclophosphamide, try to get a prompt blood test, and see your doctor immediately if any of the above symptoms are severe.

You should also see your doctor if you get chickenpox or shingles or come into contact with someone who has chickenpox or shingles. These illnesses can be severe if you're on cyclophosphamide. You may need antiviral treatment, and your cyclophosphamide may need to be stopped until you're better.

One very important side-effect is inflammation and bleeding of the bladder wall (haemorrhagic cystitis). If this happens you may notice blood in your urine and you must see your doctor immediately. To reduce the risk of this happening, you should drink 8–10 glasses (2–3 litres) of non-alcoholic drinks or water a day. You may be prescribed a drug called mesna to try to reduce the risk of cystitis.

Cyclophosphamide can also affect the blood count, which means your body is making fewer blood cells.

Because cyclophosphamide can affect the blood and the bladder, your doctor will arrange for you to have blood and urine tests before and during treatment. You may be asked to keep a record of your test results in a booklet and to bring it with you when you visit your GP or the hospital.

You must not take cyclophosphamide unless you're having regular checks.

Sometimes cyclophosphamide can cause hair loss, mouth ulcers and irregular menstrual periods.

There's a slightly increased risk of certain types of cancer, particularly bladder cancer, but cyclophosphamide won't be prescribed unless your doctor thinks the benefits outweigh the risks.

Reducing the risk of infection


0800 5200 520

Our new helpline: Call us for free information, help and advice on your type of arthritis. Open Mon–Fri 9am–8pm.

All calls are recorded for training and quality purposes

Virtual Assistant

Our new Arthritis Virtual Assistant uses artificial intelligence to answer your arthritis related questions 24/7.

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