Monday, January 6, 2014

Treatment - the sooner the better ...

A comment to a previous post got me thinking more in depth about something i already knew, modern treatment of RA is far more successful at putting people into remission than it used to be.
CNN has this great article from 2012 that talks about this in detail. Click this link to see the article. Advances In RA Treatment - The Sooner The Better
The frustration on my end is of course that I am at the beginning of the RA. I am at the so far nothing is working part. As is the normal course of action my rheumatologist is starting with the first line medications. So far, no difference has been seen for me. I made an appointment for this Friday, as I am just in so much pain. I wasn't actually due to follow up until February. I just don't want to keep waiting when i am seeing absolutely no changes, and an increase of symptoms.
Another issue i have is that my doctor cannot just skip over medications to something more aggressive in treating RA. Thanks to managed care, most insurance companies (mine included) now require step therapy. The basic idea is that to save money, the insurance company requires your doctor to first prescribe the baseline (read into this CHEAPER) drugs first. Before moving on to the more aggressive and newer drugs (read EXPENSIVE) for treatment, you first have to fail at being helped.
But with a disease as potentially dangerous as RA if it's not put into remission quickly, this just seems less than satisfactory. But, what can one do...
I just keep taking my medicines and keeping track of symptoms. I will follow up as often as I need to with my rheumatologist to make sure I stay on track to remission.
Now to brace for the 4-6 potential feet (yes FEET) of snow we are predicted to get over the next 48 hours. *sigh*

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