Hello Fearless Readers! I am happy to say that I will be starting a new drug therapy next month. Although this may not be a big deal for many, it definitely is for those of us who are fighting illness everyday. Trust me, this is not as simple as choosing between Tylenol and Advil. I've lived with multiple sclerosis (MS) for nearly six years and I've struggled quite a bit with medication. Why? Because every medication that has been recommended so far has made me feel worse than my illness does. That is exactly why I'm thrilled about this transition. It is something that I thought about for over a month and I just thought I'd share some of the questions that I asked with my neurologist with my readers.
1. How will it affect school and my job?
2. Will it cause significant weight gain/loss?
3. Will it affect my ability to conceive or carry a child?
4. How much does it cost?
5. How frequently do I have to take it?
6. Do people my age use this medication too?
7. How long has it been on the market?
8. Will my medical insurance cover it?
9. How is it administered?
10. Does it require any special storage?
11. Can I travel while using this medication?
12. Will it make my hair fall out?
13. Will it cause fever/nausea?
14. Will it cause any pain?
15. Are there any negative long-term effects?
16. Does it cause fatigue?
17. Can I be active while using this medication?
18. Do I have to make any lifestyle changes when I begin using it?
19. Are there specific times of the day that I need to take it?
20. Exactly how does it work?
21. How has it helped other patients?
When you have a chronic illness, your choice of treatment can affect your entire life. You're already stuck with your illness (at least for the time being) so try not to get stuck with a medication that you can't handle. IT HELPS TO ASK THE RIGHT QUESTIONS! The questions above are meant to assist any young woman with a chronic disease in finding the treatment that is right for HER. It may sound like you're grilling your doctor at first but remember that most good decisions are made after completing good research. Your medication decisions should be no different.
UNTIL NEXT WEEK!
STAY TUNED AND STAY FEARLESS!