I thought I’d provide a quick update.
I had the second of the three “loading” doses of Remicade this week. The good news is that next to swallowing Xeljanz tablets, I must say it was one of the most non-events of my RA history and certainly one of the most boring. There were a few tense moments as the infusion nurse searched for a vein. I was expecting another hour-long search and stick mission like we had last time, but she hit the first vein she tried. (I can count on the fingers of one hand the number of times that’s ever happened to me.) After that it was sit back for two hours and ignore the daytime television program that was on. I did get a low-grade headache about 45 minutes into the infusion. The nurse gave me some Tylenol and added an additional 100 cc of saline solution to help keep me hydrated, both of which helped.
The bad news is that I’m not seeing any positive results of the Remicade yet. That’s not really bad news because it’s only been two weeks since I started treatment, so it’s a bit early to tell if it will work or not. It’s weird because during the infusion I feel these little “pinpricks” in my various joints. First a knuckle will tingle, then an elbow, then a wrist, then a tingle in my spine. It only lasts a few minutes but it’s happened both times I’ve had the infusion. I keep hoping that it means the Remicade is attacking RA in those locations.
I did see the first insurance EOB for the Remicade infusions and list price is $12,000 each. That’s amazing. I thought $2,000 to $3,000 per month for biologics was outrageous. Makes me wonder if I could make a deal with the insurance to NOT take the infusions. They could pay me a discount — say $8,000 per month. I guess if it works, it will be worth it, so fingers crossed that the elixir starts working its magic soon.
I hope whatever is going on in your life is all good news. Thanks for checking in.