I hopeI have spelt this right.

I am having problems with very low platelets, and my specialist is wanting to put me on this.

I am wondering if anyone would be kind enough to share with me the side effects they felt whilst on this medication.


Hi Smiley.

I'm also taking Azathioprine, for 2 years now. My doctor monitors me closely. Lots of labs. The only side effects I have personally experienced are anemia and nausea, so I take after I eat. I've also been treated for a lot more infections while taking. Overall, this medication has made me feel so much better but my doctor has suggested a change because of the infections. Hope you have great success with it.

Hey, I’ve been taking this med for about four months now. It’s still pretty early. The side effects I’ve had with it are Anemia, nausea, and random dizzy spells. The dizzy spells went away after a few weeks of taking the meds but otherwise I haven’t had any major problems with it.

I’m on it right now I had side effects to everything else not tis yet! Good luck I’ve been on it a week

I just looked it up, and it says "Azathioprine can cause a decrease in the number of blood cells in your bone marrow, which may cause serious or life-threatening infections." You need to be VERY careful about infections. Buy a box of surgical masks to wear to protect you.

Here's the website I was reading. This is the precautions page, but there are other answers about the medicine there too.

Best wishes, Sheila

Two months in, acute renal failure, an ambulance ride, and a week in the hospital. I recovered, more or less, and am now off aza and on Cellcept. 6 weeks in, and so far, so good. I know that aza can be helpful. It just didn't work for me...

Hi all,

Thanks for your feed back.

Just as I had thought, if i am already having problems with anemia and platlets, it doesn''t really make great sense to be put on somehting that causes it.

I will have to wait now until I get an appointment with a Haematologist.



My doctor used Predisone to bring my platlets back up. I had dropped down to 25 and was in the hospital about a month before they could get mine back up and that's when I was diagnosed with Lupus and Sjourgens disease. I haven't had any problems since..........................Good Luck! I hope everything works for you.


Actually it is your autoimmune disease which is destroying your blood cells Azathioprothine suppresses the immune system so it stops destroying your blood cells.

I think she was referring to what I mentioned. Yes, you're right, her AI disease is doing that, but the description of the drug she was supposed to be getting actually said "Azathioprine can cause a decrease in the number of blood cells in your bone marrow," So maybe another chemo drug with different side effects would be better for a person with Anemia.

However the purpose of the drug is to stop her body from destroying her own blood cells and therefore will bring her blood counts back up so its not going to just drop her counts lower. If her platelets are low she should be seen by a hematologist- . Its not something that can just be ignored and sometimes it takes weeks to get an appointment. I assume she is under a rheumatologist- azathioprine is a common drug used for our illness Cellcept, Immuran, azi, prednisone all can lower blood counts and predispose us to infection - an unfortunate illness in that the drugs for treatment are not so benign. But the lupus itself also predisposes us to infections too. I have AIHA and also low platelets and use many of these drugs and other more toxic drugs in order to control- my counts come right up with treatment. My health is in more danger not being treated than from the side effects. Perhaps she should discuss with her doctor and see if she can safely wait for the hematologist and see what he recommends.

unfortunately my platelets haven’t responded to prednisone and aren’t budging.I have had my tpmt? Levels tested and these are low and I am unable to go onto azathiaprine. They are unsure where to go to from here…good things take time here in little of New Zealand