Peter Hibberd, M.D., is a doctor whose advice is based on more than 28 years of hospital outpatient and inpatient experience. He is an experienced emergency medicine physician, surgeon, and consultant. Dr. Hibberd is certified by the American Board of Emergency Medicine. He is also a fellow and active member of the American Academy of Family Physicians, an active member of the American College of Emergency Physicians, and a member and fellow of the American Academy of Emergency Medicine. Dr. Hibberd has earned numerous national and international professional certifications, memberships, and awards.

Treating Psoriatic Arthritis

Wednesday, 26 August 2009 10:27 AM

Question: I am currently using Enbrel and a few other meds to treat my psoriatic arthritis. Are there any other treatments you can recommend? I was off Enbrel for almost a year due to HMO hassles, and it doesn't seem to be working as well as it had previously.

Dr. Hibberd's Answer:

The arthritis associated with psoriasis is a particularly aggressive and destructive form in which uncontrolled joints are rapidly and irretrievably destroyed. Enbrel is an immune modulator medication used for controlling severe psoriasis as well as rheumatoid arthritis, psoriasis and ankylosing spondylitis. This medication is given as a weekly subcutaneous shot, and has been very successful at arresting the immune response that attacks joints. If it doesn’t seem to be working as well, you will probably need a booster twice a week for three months before resuming weekly doses. See your rheumatologist for advice.

Your health insurance carrier is bound to follow the advice your physician. When problems arise with reimbursement of necessary medications, inform your state department of insurance. They have methods to encourage insurance companies to be more responsive in paying for expensive but effective medications.

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