Lemtrada

Lemtrada controlled RRMS disease activity more than a decade

Over more than a decade of treatment with Lemtrada (alemtuzumab), relapse rates were low and about half of people with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS) remained free of confirmed disability worsening, according to final results from the open-label TOPAZ clinical trial. “To our knowledge, this report represents the longest…

Fighting Fire With Fire: The War Between Lemtrada and My MS

“So can you lift me up/ And turn these ashes into flames/ ‘Cause I have overcome/ More than words will ever say.” — Kate Voegele My relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS) diagnosis stole my life from me. The reverberations of this unwelcome thunderbolt were astounding. Coming to terms with a…

Pain and Positivity: My Experience With Plasmapheresis

“‘Cause I would never break your heart/ I would only rearrange/ All the other working parts will stay in place.” — Biffy Clyro, a Scottish rock band If you’ve spent any time in a hospital, you know that it never gets completely dark. There’s always a light flickering somewhere, a…

Crossing the Lemtrada Finish Line

I’m marking a big anniversary this month. It’s been four years since I finished the second round of treatment with Lemtrada (alemtuzumab), my final disease-modifying therapy (DMT). That means that, after about 60 monthly blood draws, I’m finished being stuck. Lemtrada is usually a two-phase series of injections, with…

The Building Blocks of Becoming a Busy Bee

“Serendipity. Look for something, find something else, and realize that what you’ve found is more suited to your needs than what you thought you were looking for.” — Lawrence Block When the world was thrown into lockdown at the dawn of COVID-19, I was already an old hand at functioning…

The Furious Fire of Heat Sensitivity

“In order to rise from its own ashes, a phoenix must first burn.” — Octavia E. Butler You know that feeling of waking up in a strange place, and it takes a second to remember where you are? Imagine that coupled with not being able to move from the neck…

Study Finds Lemtrada Safe for MS Patients With Other Autoimmunity

Other autoimmune conditions, particularly those characterized by the presence of anti-TPO antibodies, should not preclude patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) from receiving treatment with Lemtrada (alemtuzumab), according to an analysis of pooled data from clinical trials and post-market data. The study, “Autoimmunity and long-term safety and efficacy…

My Lemtrada Treatment, 5 Years Later

It was five years ago, Dec. 5, 2016, that I scootered into the office of Dr. Heidi Crayton, my neurologist, and plopped into a soft, brown leather recliner. Day 1 of Round 1 of my Lemtrada (alemtuzumab) infusions was about to begin. I’d prepped for this day: two days…

I’m Sleeping Better These Days, but Why?

I had a great night’s sleep the other night. I fell asleep quickly and slept straight through the night for nearly seven hours. When I got up in the morning, I felt refreshed, which is exceedingly rare these days. Plus, it even happened a few more times in the past…

Overcoming the Loneliness and Isolation of Aggressive MS

“Hurricane MS,” which is how I refer to the aggressive nature of my MS progression, happened quickly and mercilessly. I am aware that my case is particularly unusual, given how aggressive its onset was. This is one of the reasons I feel a sense of purpose in sharing my story…

Early Use of High-efficacy DMTs Favor Lesser Disability Over Time

Long-term disability outcomes tend to be better in people with relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS) who are treated early on with highly effective therapies, a study based on patient registry data indicates. The study, “Long-term disability trajectories in relapsing multiple sclerosis patients treated with early intensive or…

Let’s Treat Older MS Patients With More Respect

As comic Rodney Dangerfield might have said, older people with MS “just don’t get no respect.” By older, I mean those of us who are 55 and up. By respect, I mean from researchers and some neurologists. So, as I approach my 73rd birthday, I have to tip my cap…

Will Reduced Treatment Time Keep Ocrevus Competitive?

One of the key considerations when choosing a disease-modifying therapy (DMT) is how much it will disrupt your life. It’s one of several factors that need to be evaluated. Unlike shots and pills, infusion treatments can require a significant amount of time. That’s why the U.S. Federal Drug Administration’s December…

And the Biofilm Goes to …

The medical profession must be sick and tired of patients diagnosing themselves via the wonders of the internet. But as a patient who’s sick and tired, you eventually have to. Medicine is full of orthodoxies that are incredibly hard to shake. When you find yourself at the edge of these…

Stem Cells Versus DMTs: MS Treatments Go Head to Head

People with multiple sclerosis have been waiting for this: A full-scale clinical trial testing the effectiveness of stem cell transplantation as an MS treatment. The trial is being conducted by the U.S. National Institutes of Health, and it’s enrolling people with MS at several centers in the United States and…

Mavenclad Cost-Effective Treatment for At-risk RRMS Patients Compared to Other DMTs, Dutch Study Finds

Treating at-risk relapsing-remitting multiple sclerosis (RRMS) patients is most cost-effective with Mavenclad (cladribine) tablets when compared to Gilenya (fingolimod), Lemtrada (alemtuzumab) or Tysabri (natalizumab), according to a study in Dutch patients. The study, “Cost Effectiveness of Cladribine Tablets for the Treatment of Relapsing-Remitting Multiple Sclerosis in…