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#186917 - 10/10/10 02:24 PM Remicade vs Humira
bwbeus Offline
Registered Visitor

Registered: 10/10/10
Posts: 2
I was finally diagnosed last week by a Rheumatologist with AS. As it has now advanced, the doctor would like to aggressively fight it with Remicade or Humira. The NSAIDS my family practice doctor put me on many months ago did very little to help. I have had years of back pain but over a year ago my neck, hips, and shoulders are so painful and stiff, not to mention the overwhelming sense of fatigue that I constantly feel. I also occasionally have heel pain. But I know you all understand how I am feeling and I am excited to have a diagnosis with a treatment that may help me get back to being me and able to function more normally. So my question to you is: Which medication has worked for you--Remicade or Humira?

I understand that individual results vary. Because the Remicade is administered as an infusion in the office it is much more expensive than the Humira that qualifies under our prescription plan and is self administered which makes Humira much cheaper. But I don't want to go on cost alone in making the decision...any input would be great to have. Thanks in advance.

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#186924 - 10/10/10 07:21 PM Re: Remicade vs Humira [Re: bwbeus]
Banana Offline
Registered Visitor

Registered: 07/23/06
Posts: 6050
Loc: New York
Ok, with the NSAIDs, you can adapt to it and need to be switched to another one. You also need to follow the directions and take them exactly as instructed. NSAIDs are the only medication that is proven to stop/slow fusing so please, don't stop taking them because one isn't working. There are many more to try.

There is no way to tell which one will work better for you. They don't have all the genes/info about our darn disease yet.

Call your insurance co, if you can't get the info about which one will be cheaper for you. My IVs are more expensive than Humira but a couple years ago IVs were cheaper with another policy.

For me, the injections are better because I have to travel for the IVs and they take up my whole day. sigh. Where I got the Remicade, I couldn't get it till 10 AM and got out of there at 2PM--no enough time to get back to work. Now my IV is just an hour but I travel 2 hours to get there and 2 hours back.

Good luck, welcome

Anna


Edited by Banana (10/10/10 07:21 PM)
Edit Reason: typo
_________________________
Actema IV once a month (with pre loading for allergic reaction), Cymbalta x1 daily, Arava 20mg daily. Diagnosed with AS in 2004, suffered undiagnosed since 1982.

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#186944 - 10/11/10 06:49 AM Re: Remicade vs Humira [Re: bwbeus]
JenInCincy Offline
Registered Visitor

Registered: 05/19/08
Posts: 13278
Loc: Cincinnati, OH
Originally Posted By: bwbeus
my question to you is: Which medication has worked for you--Remicade or Humira?

I understand that individual results vary. Because the Remicade is administered as an infusion in the office it is much more expensive than the Humira that qualifies under our prescription plan and is self administered which makes Humira much cheaper. But I don't want to go on cost alone in making the decision...any input would be great to have. Thanks in advance.


You're right, individual results vary and unfortunately there are no individual traits that can be measured at this time that can help indicate that Remicade or Humira would work better. Both help about 60% of AS patients who use them. You are right, you have nailed down the major differences - method, frequency, and location of administration; and cost.

You should just think about which fits better into your lifestyle, and if your doc has a preference, factor that in, too. Right now in my household we have one on Remicade (my daughter for her Crohn's) and one on Humira (I just started in September, will do my 4th injection this week.) I personally would not want the hassle of Remicade myself. Lucy's infusions take a total of 5 hours or longer (including 1/2 hr travel each way) - even though it is now only every 8 weeks I much prefer the self-injection at home which takes only half an hour (when you factor in the time the med is out of the fridge and you have to watch the clock.) In the face of lack of evidence for superiority of one drug over the other I choose convenience every time!! (When I factor in the insurance and the manufacturer payment assistance they both cost the same for me.)

Good luck with the decision and I hope that whatever you choose helps you quickly!
_________________________
Jen, 42, happy partner of James and Moma to Evan, 14, & Lucy, 12.5 (Crohn's dx @ age 3; on Remicade since April 2010.) I take piroxicam, Flexeril, & Nucynta ER nightly. 3 anti-TNFs didn't pan out for me.

"Science is the father of knowledge, but opinion breeds ignorance." -- Hippocrates

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#187041 - 10/12/10 01:04 PM Re: Remicade vs Humira [Re: bwbeus]
jrprusak Offline
Registered Visitor

Registered: 02/22/08
Posts: 127
Loc: ALASKA
Wow, I think you want to stick with the NSAIDS route first, there are many and a month trial period is all it takes.. I have tried dozens of them and always come back to Indocin SR 75mg 2-3 per day, it is a miracle pill for me for over 35 years.

I tried a remicade infusion, had to be done in the chemotherapy department for 3 hours, I felt great right away but only lasted about a week, and at a cost of $13,500 for one infusion and high risk of getting infectious diseases, I gave it up

Humira at one shot per week, and then switching to every 2 weeks for 6 months just did not work for me, and I still had the take the indocin SR. Also at a cost of $1,250 per dose was hard for me to justify it, even though my insurance covered it, also with the risk of infectious diseases.

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