Tysabri: A new MS treatment

What is Tysabri and how does it work?

Tysabri® (natalizumab) is a new MS medication that has recently become available in Canada. It is a disease-modifying medication, which means that it works to slow down the progression of the disease.

In people with MS, the body's immune system attacks the fatty myelin sheaths that protect nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord. Myelin helps the nerve cells conduct electricity, which carries messages between nerve cells. When myelin is damaged, the nerve cells cannot send messages properly, leading to problems with walking, coordination, bowel and bladder function, thinking, and vision. It can also cause fatigue, pain, and muscle spasticity.

Tysabri is a man-made protein that works by helping to prevent the body's immune system from attacking the myelin sheath. This can help slow down the progression of MS.

How is Tysabri given?

Tysabri is given as an intravenous infusion, which means that it is given slowly into a vein (over a period of approximately one hour).

The infusion is given once every 4 weeks by a healthcare professional such as a doctor or nurse. It is usually given in a special MS or infusion clinic.

People taking Tysabri will be carefully monitored during the infusion, and for an hour after the infusion is finished to watch for signs of an allergic reaction, so that this may be treated before they leave the clinic. For more information on the safety of Tysabri, see "Tysabri safety information."

All material copyright MediResource Inc. 1996 – 2021. Terms and conditions of use. The contents herein are for informational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Source: www.medbroadcast.com/healthfeature/gethealthfeature/MS-Whats-New-in-MS-Therapy

How Tysabri can help

How can Tysabri help people with MS?

Tysabri® is a disease-modifying treatment for the relapsing-remitting form of MS. "Disease-modifying" means that it acts to slow the progression of the disease, and so can help prevent MS from getting worse.

Tysabri has been shown in clinical studies to:

  • reduce the frequency of relapses
  • decrease the number and size of active brain lesions (brain areas damaged by MS) seen on MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) scans
  • delay the progression of physical disability

How does this translate into a difference in how you feel? Although you may not notice anything happening to your MS, you may experience fewer relapses, and you may find that your MS does not get worse as quickly.

Who can use Tysabri?

Tysabri is used for the treatment of the relapsing-remitting form of MS. It has not been studied for other forms of MS, such as chronic progressive MS.

It is intended for people who cannot take other MS treatments, or for whom other MS treatments have not worked.

What do I need to know about taking Tysabri?

Tysabri offers a new option for MS treatment, but it is not for everyone. For more information about Tysabri, whether this treatment could be right for you, and how to access the treatment, contact your MS doctor or nurse.

All material copyright MediResource Inc. 1996 – 2021. Terms and conditions of use. The contents herein are for informational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Source: www.medbroadcast.com/healthfeature/gethealthfeature/MS-Whats-New-in-MS-Therapy

Tysabri safety information

When choosing a new treatment, it's important to understand both the benefits and the risks. Here is some of the most important information you need to know about safety and side effects of Tysabri®.

What side effects may occur?

Some of the possible side effects of Tysabri include dizziness, nausea, headache, joint pain, tiredness, shivering, sore throat, infections, and runny or stuffy nose.

Occasionally, people may have an allergic reaction to Tysabri. If you have symptoms of a serious allergic reaction, such as hives, swelling of the face, lips or throat, or difficulty breathing, seek immediate medical attention.

Tysabri can increase the risk of a rare but serious neurological condition called PML (progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy), which can lead to severe disability or death. PML symptoms are similar to the symptoms of MS, so check with your doctor if your MS seems to be getting worse or if you have new MS symptoms.

Who should not take Tysabri?

Tysabri should not be used during pregnancy unless you and your doctor determine that the benefits outweigh the risks. It is not known whether Tysabri passes into breast milk, so women using Tysabri should avoid breast-feeding.

Tysabri has not been studied in children under 18 years of age.

People with serious immune system problems (such as HIV or leukemia), those who have or have had PML, and those who are allergic to any ingredient of the medication should not take Tysabri.

The safety and effectiveness of using Tysabri for more than 2 years are not known.

What else do I need to know?

Speak to your doctor if:

  • your MS seems to be getting worse
  • you develop new MS symptoms
  • you have any other symptoms that worry you
  • you become pregnant
  • you start any new medications (especially medications that affect the immune system, such as cancer or transplant medications)

All material copyright MediResource Inc. 1996 – 2021. Terms and conditions of use. The contents herein are for informational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Source: www.medbroadcast.com/healthfeature/gethealthfeature/MS-Whats-New-in-MS-Therapy

New MS treatments on the horizon

MS researchers are continuing their search for a cure, and some promising new treatments are on the horizon. What new treatments could be coming for MS?

Myelin fixers: For years, researchers have been looking for ways to repair the myelin (the protective coating for nerve cells) that is damaged in MS. Now, some exciting new studies are underway that could lead to the development of myelin-repair medications. These studies aim to better understand how the body builds and maintains myelin, how different nerve cells communicate as the body repairs damaged nerve cells, and how we can manipulate these processes to encourage the body to repair its own myelin.

Hormones: For women with MS, hormone therapy may offer a new treatment possibility. MS is much more common in women than in men, and early research has shown that treatment with estriol, a female hormone, may help decrease disease activity for women with relapsing-remitting MS. Larger-scale, 2-year studies are now planned to further evaluate this treatment.

Protecting the brain: In order for the immune system to attack the brain, immune system cells must get across the border between the brain and the rest of the body, known as the blood-brain barrier. This border is lined with cells called endothelial cells. Researchers are looking into ways to help endothelial cells keep the invading immune system cells out of the brain and prevent the nerve damage caused by MS. This could lead to new brain-protection treatments for MS.

As research continues to improve our understanding of MS, more exciting new treatments can be developed.

All material copyright MediResource Inc. 1996 – 2021. Terms and conditions of use. The contents herein are for informational purposes only. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Source: www.medbroadcast.com/healthfeature/gethealthfeature/MS-Whats-New-in-MS-Therapy