I have mostly been a lurker on this board, but I do post now and then. I have been on copaxone for 13 months now, and just got the results of my 1 year brain MRI. The results are favorable (some improvement, no new lesions or Gd enhancing lesions) and my neurological exam was improved somewhat from before I started copaxone. Oh, and no relapses since starting
But, I do need advice about IPIRs - I've had 3 of them. Doozies, well beyond the 10-15 minutes of flushing. Yes, I get the flushing and it resolves in 10-15 minutes. But then ~1/2 hr later I get hives at the last 20 or so injection sites followed by 1/2 hour of intensive shivering. Then in one of the three incidents, I vomited. All told an IPIR for me is about a 90 minute to 2 hour process, and honestly the flushing is the least unpleasant part of the whole deal.
Since my injection site reactions have been diminishing and I haven't had any lipoatrophy, the IPIRs are the most formidable objection to this medication. Sadly SS knows nothing about how to prevent these, or how to remedy them once they've started. My neuro feels strongly that its related to getting the medicine into the blood stream. He has several recommendations:
1. abandon using a hot pack before the injection (dilates capillaries which could make it more likely you'll hit one)
2. consider using a cold pack before the injection (related to #1)
3. play with depth (e.g. shallower) - presently I use the autoject with 6mm setting.
3. consider going to manual injection which lets you check for blood before injecting.
Does anybody have any critique or additions to this list?