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I’m a pretty even-keel kind of girl. I seldom get very angry or very down. On the other side, I also seldom get giddy happy over much. I enjoy life, I’m just generally calm about it.

So when I say I’m discouraged, that’s like a -8 on a scale of -10. I’m not at the crawl-under-the-covers-and-hide-and-cry part yet, but I’ve quit seeing the light at the end of the tunnel.

My Cimzia doesn’t seem to be working.

I reported medical discussions in an earlier post about what’s next for people who don’t respond to TNF blockers. One of the interesting things about the linked article is that people can actually build up antibodies to a drug just like they can to an infection. This basically creates a resistance to the drug.

I think that’s what’s happened. I started Cimzia in mid-October and it seemed to take a while to take effect. By January, I felt like it had started helping but it wasn’t lasting the full two weeks. In addition to the 20 mg of Arava I take, we added back in 7.5 mg of Mobic twice a day.

Now I can’t tell it’s working at all. It’s like I’m going backward. When I wake up in the mornings my hands are so sore and swollen that I can’t make a fist. My feet are painful to walk on. I’ve had at least two major flares in the last few weeks.

I’m not due to see my rheumatologist for another month, but I will probably move up the appointment. Usually I go in with some thoughts on what direction we should take, but I am at a loss at this point. I’ve been on MTX, Humira, Simponi, Enbrel, Orencia, and now Cimzia. I am not a good candidate for infusion therapy. I almost think I’d rather have the RA than go through the sheer torture of trying to start an IV in my poor veins. (I had some labs pulled the other day and after trying the most likely places, they finally found a vein in the back of my hand that worked — until it blew out.)

So I feel like I’m at a standstill. What I’m doing isn’t working but I don’t have the will to move forward and try something new. If there is good news, it’s that I trust my rheumatologist and I know I can talk to her about the situation. That step I can take.

I hope whatever you’re doing is working well. Thanks for checking in.