New to biologics and need advise

Posted by lisabeans @lisabeans, Thu, Oct 3 8:56pm

I am going to be starting biologics and I have to decide between Humira and Embrel. Anyone have any words of wisdom for me?

Hi @lisabeans — While you wait for other members to share their experience with Humira and Enbrel I thought I would give you an article that might provide some differences. Is your doctor recommending one over the other?

Enbrel vs. Humira
https://www.rxlist.com/enbrel_vs_humira/drugs-condition.htm

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Thank you. My rheumatologist said they are all similar and is leaving it up to me. I hate needles and am scared but I need to relieve some of this pain.

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Humira was my first biologic, and I was nieve to needles, however, I have to say it's not bad! I was on Humira for -1 year, and then switched to Enbrel. I was on Enbrel for a little less than the timeframe for Humira. The only side effect I had was from injecting the Enbrel. The injection site got really red and swollen, and went away after some time. As time went on, it got better at the injection site. I am now being switched to Xeljanz. I was just afraid of needles as you are, but we do what we have to do. Feel the fear and do it anyway!!! If you have any other questions feel free to message me! I'd try Humira first.

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@lisabeans

Thank you. My rheumatologist said they are all similar and is leaving it up to me. I hate needles and am scared but I need to relieve some of this pain.

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I was told this, too, but they're not the same — look at the side effect profile. Plus regardless of drug class, whether antibiotics or biologics, they're different molecules! This makes me so angry. I was told my two different rheums that Orencia is believed to have a decreased risk of infection. Now, if I was the doc, I'd look at my patients file first. Hmmmm, Asthma, has had MRSA twice, I think i would have selected Orencia rather than putting the ball in the patient's court! I don't understand the laziness or if they're afraid to be sued, if a patient gets a bad side effect? Just guessing….

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@lisabeans it looks like you’ve gotten some good information about the biologics. I especially like the article that @johnbishop posted. What’s really important is that you do as much research as you can and add it to what you learn here. Learn how to do the injections, get as much training as you can. If someone will be helping you, have them get the training also. Are any friends nurses? They can help! I have confidence in you! Will you keep me informed on how it goes? Becky

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Thanks Becky. No nurses in my family or friends group. My husband can help me. I'm just so scared. I want to be pain free or at least in less pain. Thanks for having confidence in me. After all the research I'm going to give Embrel a try. Wish me luck!

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@lisabeans

Thanks Becky. No nurses in my family or friends group. My husband can help me. I'm just so scared. I want to be pain free or at least in less pain. Thanks for having confidence in me. After all the research I'm going to give Embrel a try. Wish me luck!

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@lisabeans Maybe you could go with Humira for a time until your anxiety lessens. The end results are the same, right? Your mental state is important, too. Think about it and let me know

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Everything I have read makes Embrel sound easier to use. I figure at this point, I am desperate to feel better so I will see what insurance dictates as well.

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@lisabeans

Everything I have read makes Embrel sound easier to use. I figure at this point, I am desperate to feel better so I will see what insurance dictates as well.

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I've used both. Both are easy to administer. With the Humira I didn't get the reactions at the injection site.

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@lisabeans

Everything I have read makes Embrel sound easier to use. I figure at this point, I am desperate to feel better so I will see what insurance dictates as well.

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@lisabeans I remember you were trying to decide between Enbrel and Humira, but were very anxious about the injections. What have you decided? What have you been able to learn from insurance ?

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My insurance doesn't cover Embrel until I try humira first. I am now waiting for them to approve the pharmacy so I can start.

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@lisabeans

My insurance doesn't cover Embrel until I try humira first. I am now waiting for them to approve the pharmacy so I can start.

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@lisabeans It’s always insurance isn’t it?! My insurance wouldn’t cover the rituximab I needed—talk about having heart failure when I was told. But the drug company’s foundation decided to take me on as a “charity” case and pay for it. Just hope they don’t change their mind! Let me know how the Humira goes. Becky

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I hope they don't change their minds for you as well. I hate insurance. They cover my GI doctor but not where she does her procedures. I need a colonoscopy (ulcerative colitis) and endoscopy (ulcers) but don't have $2000 to pay for it.

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Speak to the doctor and hospital/center where you would have the procedures. Let them know you can't pay this, but need it. They should work something out with you. Try.

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Thanks. I will try that.

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