WHAT ARE DISEASE-MODIFYING ANTIRHEUMATIC DRUGS?
DMARDs work to suppress the body's overactive immune and/or inflammatory systems. They take effect over weeks or months and are not designed to provide immediate relief of symptoms.
Other medicines, such as pain relievers, nonsteroidal antiinflammatory drugs (eg, ibuprofen or naproxen), and, sometimes, prednisone, are given to provide faster relief of ongoing symptoms. DMARDs are often used in combination with these medications to reduce the total amount of medication needed and to prevent damage to joints
What are Biologic Drugs?
Biologics are special types of disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (DMARD).
Biologics are genetically engineered proteins that target specific parts of the immune system that fuel inflammation.
Before starting at Biologic
You will need to get a chest xray to rule out tuberculosis
Blood test looking at serology for hepatitis B virus, hepatitis C virus, HIV, and varicella zoster virus
Please bring in all your Vaccination records as you may require boosters or additional vaccinations prior to starting on your biologic medication.
Please make sure you are up to date with all your preventive health checks prior to starting biologic (eg. annual skin check, Pap smear and dental check)
UPDATE ABOUT TOCILIZUMAB SHORTAGE
Roche Products Pty Limited (Roche), the sponsor of tocilizumab (Actemra), notified the TGA of shortages of multiple presentations of tocilizumab products due to a significant increase in global demand for tocilizumab arising from its use in treating critically ill COVID-19 patients. Global supply is now extremely limited and patient-level shortages are expected until early 2022.
If you are unable to get supply of Actemra and have asked your Pharmacist to contact all their Wholesalers directly then give us a call and we can discuss your options 02 6230 6305
Information for your Pharmacist