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Cancer and Antisynthetase Syndrome

pfosse Message
9 May 2020, 02:21 PM

In May, 2018 I was diagnosed with Antisynthetase syndrome with lung involvement.  The Drs had to put me on 160 mgs of prednisone plus 200 mgs of Azithoprine per day to stop the inflammation in my lungs.  They slowly reduced the prednisone and eventually reduced the Azithioprine to 150 mgs per day and I seemed to be doing well with no flare ups.  In August of 2019, I was diagnosed with HPV tonsil cancer and had to go through radiation and chemotherapy for 7 weeks (35 rounds of radiation).  My PET scan in Feb 2020 showed no cancer.  I was taken off all medication and have not had a flare up.  The Drs are now saying that the Antisynthetase Syndrone was my body trying to deal with the cancer and since the cancer is gone, I no longer have Antisynthetase syndrome (or it is in long term remission).  I no longer take any immume suppressing medication and haven't since February, 2020.  Drs are surprised at my recovery.  Just wanted to share, in case someone else is in a similar situation.  God Bless you.

alison1967 Message
10 May 2020, 01:46 PM

So pleased you are free of cancer. I'm guessing the chemotherapy you had as treatment has also suppressed your immune system as it does for all chemo patients, and it has therefore kept your anti synthetase under control, a great side effect! Take care that as your immune system boosts itself back up that it doesn't kick start the anti synthetase again. Great to hear a positive outcome for you after what must have been a difficult time

warthawg Message
29 Aug 2020, 12:37 AM

I developed squamous cell carcinoma about a year ago, some think it may be related to my use of azathioprine earlier in my disease. Got it all removed and I've been cancer free so far since then, but have to keep a much closer eye on my skin condition now. I'm no longer on azathioprine, switched to Cellcept a few years ago. 

pfosse Message
29 Aug 2020, 01:49 PM

Thanks for the information.  I was on azithioprine for a year and 10 months and stopped taking it in Feb 2020.  Went back for my 6 month Oncologist appointment in August, no cancer.  Still not on any immune suprressing medications for antisynthetase syndrome and after the initail, horrible flare up that nearly killed me, once the HPV cancer was diagnosed and treated, I have had no more symptoms.  I am back to hiking about 5 miles per day and working out on my weights.  Back to my pre-illness weight.  Have a few long term side effects from such a high dose of prednisone for so long and from the 35 rediation treatments on my neck, but other than that, doing well.  Drs say I am a case that is in remission with no medications.  I feel thankful and blessed.