Why I’m actually looking forward to a date with the MRI scanner

I'm hoping treatment with Ocrevus has reduced my MS lesions

Mike Parker avatar

by Mike Parker |

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As those of us with multiple sclerosis (MS) know, every so often a call comes or a letter arrives telling us we have a date with an extraordinary friend: the magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scanner.

For me, it seems that time has arrived again. Just a few days ago I thought my yearly visit to the tube was overdue, and then a letter arrived from the hospital telling me it was indeed time again.

Usually, I feel a little nervous when an MRI appointment is coming up, but this time, I’m looking forward to it.

Looking forward to an MRI scan, you say? Yep, that’s right. The reason is that the past year is the first time I’ve been taking a disease-modifying therapy, Ocrevus (ocrelizumab).

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MS treatments aim to slow the disease’s progression,  because, as we know, there currently is no cure. Ocrevus is delivered by an infusion, so every six months, I go to the hospital and spend about six hours sitting with a drip in my arm.

It’s been more than a year since my last scan, and now that I’m receiving treatment, I’m keen to see how it might have helped. Previous scans before I started treatment showed the progression of lesions. Has that progression slowed down? I won’t know until the results are back. Either way, I hope that at the very least no new lesions have occurred.

Once the scan is complete and the results are back, blood tests will be taken to check for any viruses, and then we are set for the next infusion.

Because infusions last for hours, I usually take some entertainment with me, such as my laptop and phone. It’s also important to bring snacks and drinks.

I hope my friends, the scanner and the needles, have the kettle on. I’ll want a cup of tea to dunk some biscuits in during our time together.


Note: Multiple Sclerosis News Today is strictly a news and information website about the disease. It does not provide medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read on this website. The opinions expressed in this column are not those of Multiple Sclerosis News Today or its parent company, BioNews, and are intended to spark discussion about issues pertaining to multiple sclerosis.

Comments

Dave Jones avatar

Dave Jones

All the best on your MRI date. I was diagnosed with primary progressive MS in 2018 after my 51st birthday. Horrible shock. I started getting ocrevus infusions January 2019. My doctor waited a bit longer to get my MRI scan, probably because of COVID and other issues. Anyway, I had my scan 2021 and was really nervous when my doctor told me he wanted to discuss the results. He told me that I had fewer lesions and that they were smaller. I shockingly said, “that sounds like good news “ and the doctor incredulously said, “ it IS good news “. I was on an emotional high for a few days. It’s been a couple years now and my doctor wants to do another MRI. Hopefully the results will be the same. Hopefully you’ll be pleasantly surprised.

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Dave avatar

Dave

Love it! I don't mind the MRI tube at all, but when I hear "no lesions" I mind it even less!

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Kimberly avatar

Kimberly

Be sure & give it time to work! I was diagnosed in 2015 and didn't begin with Ocrevus til it came out. I still had New lesions forming and old one's getting bigger for the 1st 2 years.....Now it has been 4 years and for the last 2, I have only had 1 new or flaring lesion (only on my spine) & as of last MRI just over a year ago, NONE! So they decided to go every 2 years of MRI's since the Ocrevus is working so well. It has really worked amazingly well for me and I'm ecstatic over it! GOOD LUCK & have patience!

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Colleen avatar

Colleen

My husband has been on it for quite a few years, right after it was officially approved. He has primary progressive MS . He had an MRI last week and there have been absolutely no changes year to year. That’s not saying there hasn’t been more fatigue or balance issues, but still walking with a walker and able to do the things we want to do! He has had some infections, especially in the beginning when we didn’t realize the risk after infusion. He had mouth sores, Bell’s palsy and shingles. I know how scary that sounds but all were treated quickly and very mild. It honestly has worked very well, especially now that we know to lay low for a bit after the infusion. But since Covid it’s common to avoid crowds, good luck!

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Matthew Wolze avatar

Matthew Wolze

Hey Mike!
I just had my 2 hours worth of MRI's and my results were the same as they have been for the last 5 years. Here is to hoping that the O had been as good to you! So let us know how it went. Inquiring minds want to know!
Take care,
Matt

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