Day 3 – I like this topic. I have talked about this one also but I would love to reshare it because it can give people hope.
About 3 months ago, I decided I wanted off Humira. I was getting really bad psoriasis on my legs and it was starting to spread to my stomach. I had had enough. I knew the conversation with my GI doc was going to be rough. First, I have been on pretty much every type of medicine out there so there wasn’t really anything left for me to try. Second…what doctor wants to hear that a patient is refusing their current treatment.
I did a lot of research beforehand on a new drug therapy and I decided that I wanted to try Low Dose Naltrexone or LDN. It has been gaining popularity within the IBD community for having great results with little to no side effects. That was what I needed because I seem to get all the side effects. The main problem though is that it is not a standard treatment for Crohn’s right now and is still considered experimental. I felt like I had tried all the conventional therapies so maybe it was time for something new. I printed out some information and a case study done on the drug and brought it with me to my appt.
Needless to say, the morning of my GI appt, I was very nervous. I didn’t know what my doc would say or think. He started out talking to me about how I am and then did his exam. Then we got down to brass tactics. I told him I was at the point where I need to control the psoriasis first rather than the CD so I wanted off Humira. Before he could talk me out of it, I went into suggesting LDN to him. He then told me he was familiar with the drug (as a low dose form) and he doesn’t currently have any patients on it and he has never used it. My heart sank. But…(wait, did he say but..) he would do some research into it and let me know within a week. I was shocked at this. I have never had a doctor say he would research something just for me. I think every doc should do this for every patient…I just never had it done before. All my past doctors were know it all docs who didn’t want to hear anything.
I was so excited. I was going off Humira, had a doctor that cared, and might get something that will really help me. A week went by…and I heard nothing. I knew my doc was going on vacation so I gave him another week. After 2 weeks, I messaged him and he told me that he would do it. YEAH!!!
When I went back to him about another 2 weeks later to get my script, we talked a little. Now I never gave him the information I had because I didn’t want to be pushy and scare him. When he said he would do the research, I knew he would find the same info. I however brought it with me again just in case. He did admit that this was all new to him and he wasn’t even sure just how much to prescribe. Thankfully I did my research and was able to help him with that. After I told him…he then says that the dosage matched what they used in the study. I think he really knew and was testing me to see if I really looked into the med. Gothcha doc :) So we talked a little more about this and afterwards I got my script.
I walked out of his office head held high. I was in new territory now and was proud of myself for sticking to my guns. But what I learned from all of this is that you should never ever ever be afraid to talk to your doctor. I think your treatments should be a 2 way street. You should have as much say as your doctor. I have been very lucky to have found such a great, caring and resourceful doctor. He is open to suggestions and doesn’t think that he knows it all.
And that is my message to everyone. Talk to your doctor. Sometime they will be stubborn and when they get like that, insist some more. Don’t ever back down or give in. Remember, your body is your body…not theirs. You know your body best and how you react to things. Make your voice heard. And if your doctor won’t listen to you…find another one. They truly are a dime a dozen.