Although not all of these side effects may occur, if they do occur they may need medical attention. Check with your doctor immediately if any of the following side effects occur while taking hydroxychloroquine: Incidence not known Some side effects of hydroxychloroquine may occur that usually do not need medical attention. Methotrexate and plaquenil treatment Plaquenil 400 mg side effects This toxicity affects a part of the eye called the retina and can lead to color blindness and even loss of vision. An ophthalmologist eye specialist often can detect changes in the retina that suggest toxicity before serious damage occurs. Therefore, regular eye examinations, even when there are no symptoms, are mandatory. Plaquenil can cause serious side effects when used in high doses for chronic diseases such as RA over the long term. The New Zealand Dermatological Society recommends that to decrease the risk of retina damage, no more than 200mg of Plaquenil should be taken a day, and a dose of 400mg per day should be taken no longer than a few weeks. Anne E. Fung, MD, a retina specialist at Pacific Eye Associates in San Francisco, averages one Plaquenil screening a week, due to her close affiliation with the medical center’s rheumatology and dermatology clinics. Still, in 10 years of practice, she’s seen just one case of toxicity. Dr. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. How does plaquenil affect the retina The Risk of Retinal Toxicity with Plaquenil, Long-Term Side Effects of Plaquenil for Rheumatoid. Chloroquine selleck Increased thickness of the RPE-Bruch’s membrane complex in Plaquenil patients has also been reported as an early sign. As the drug binds to melanin in the RPE, it causes degenerative changes, which leads to alteration in RPE metabolism that contributes to the changes in the RPE-Bruch’s complex. How to Succeed in Plaquenil Screenings. Rx Side Effects New Plaquenil Guidelines and More - American.. What Is Plaquenil? - American Academy of Ophthalmology. Aug 30, 2011 The deposits affect the outer retina, photoreceptor layer, and the RPE, but preserve the inner retina. Prevalence Although hydroxychloroquine retinal toxicity is thought to be rare, recent studies suggest it may have a higher prevalence than previously recognized. Hydroxychloroquine Plaquenil was originally used to treat malaria and is now used mostly to treat rheumatological and dermatological diseases. Its most frequent use now is for Rheumatoid Arthritis RA and Lupus and is often very effective in mitigating the joint and arthritic symptoms these diseases can cause. Note This document contains side effect information about hydroxychloroquine. Some of the dosage forms listed on this page may not apply to the brand name Plaquenil. For the Consumer. Applies to hydroxychloroquine oral tablet. Along with its needed effects, hydroxychloroquine the active ingredient contained in Plaquenil may cause some unwanted effects.