Hydroxychloroquine is available as the brand-name drug Plaquenil. Generic drugs usually cost less than the brand-name version. Hydroxychloroquine may be used as part of a combination therapy. Plaquenil 2016 History of chloroquine resistance Hydroxychloroquine hand osteoarthritis Hydroxychloroquine is used to treat rheumatoid arthritis; discoid and systemic lupus erythematosus SLE. Over the long term hydroxychloroquine can reduce pain, swelling and joint stiffness. If you have lupus, it may also improve the rash. It may be as long as 12 weeks before you notice the benefits. Oct 01, 2014 According to evidence-based, expert recommendations, long-term users of chloroquine CQ or hydroxychloroquine HCQ should undergo regular visits to eye-care providers and diagnostic testing to check for determine whether patients with. Plaquenil’s long half-life in the body can cause irreversible and progressive damage, Dr. Fung said. Similarly, one study reported that 16 women who’d taken hydroxychloroquine or chloroquine, or a combination of the agents, showed no improvement seven years after stopping drug therapy, and progression occurred in six of the cases. 2 Hydroxychloroquine is used to treat lupus erythematosus and rheumatoid arthritis. It isn’t fully understood how this drug works to treat lupus erythematosus or rheumatoid arthritis. That means you may need to take it with other drugs. It treats malaria by killing the parasites that cause the disease. Long term effects of hydroxychloroquine Continuation of long term treatment with hydroxychloroquine., Are Long-Term Chloroquine or Hydroxychloroquine Users Being. Plaquenil drug rash Find patient medical information for Hydroxychloroquine Oral on WebMD including its uses, side effects and safety, interactions, pictures, warnings and user ratings. Hydroxychloroquine Oral Uses, Side Effects, Interactions.. Rx Side Effects New Plaquenil Guidelines and More.. How Safe Is Long-Term Hydroxychloroquine?. Long term studies have shown a high rate of termination of hydroxychloroquine treatment in patients with RA. Although it has been shown that discontinuation of treatment with hydroxychloroquine is associated with exacerbation of SLE, long term maintenance rates of treatment with hydroxychloroquine in patients with SLE have not been investigated. Children should not take hydroxychloroquine for long-term therapy. Keep all appointments with your doctor and the laboratory. Your doctor may order certain lab tests to check your response to hydroxychloroquine. If you are taking hydroxychloroquine for a long period of time, your doctor will recommend frequent eye exams. These side effects may go away during treatment as your body adjusts to the medicine. Also, your health care professional may be able to tell you about ways to prevent or reduce some of these side effects. Check with your health care professional if any of the following side effects continue or are bothersome or if you have any questions about.