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This post is way overdue but I guess it works out better since I can talk about how well my new medication works.
For a year I was on weekly Orencia subcutaneous (under-skin) self-injections. I thought they were great. Until they were not anymore and stopped working. I tried Xeljanx for a month with absolutely no results. It was like I was on no medication whatsoever. So, I went back to Orencia.
On the first round of Orencia, I felt 80%! That had to be the record so far. When I returned to it I never felt better than 50%. It was a huge bummer.
My rheumatologist and I decided to try the monthly Orencia IV (through the vein) infusion instead. What was the harm? I planned on living in the same place for at least 6-12 more months and it was best to start new medications in as controlled environment as possible. We knew I had success with the subq (abbreviation for subcutaneous) injections and I would be more receptive to the higher dosage extended over a month.
I am not going to lie. I was a little upset.
When starting the weekly subq injections, I had to sit with the IV to kick-start the process. Three days later, I was hiking, climbing, active!
I was expecting the same reaction. So when I still felt lousy, my spirits sank.
Two weeks later, like clockwork, I felt great..but, only for two weeks.
There was a mix up with my insurance and I sat for the infusion a week late. (Note: with all the changes in public healthcare, private companies are more calculated about which and from where they will cover biological medications.)
There was one disastrous week when the previous month wore off and the current dose settled.
Now we are careful to make sure I get the infusion on time every month.
I feel great. (For the most part.)
I am easing my way back into climbing.
The only caveat? If I really mess up and flare, I do not have as many quick-fix meds (like my weekly injections) to “put out the fire”. I can only rely on prednisone. Slow and steady wins the race. Rather, slow and steady is my only option to win the race 😉
Hi, my name is Monica and I have RA.