My first Tecfidera dose

My starter pack which includes the first month’s dose of tecfidera arrived yesterday morning while I was at work.

During the day, a nurse from the mail order specialty pharmacy called me to ask how it was going on the medication and to read me their educational material.  When I explained that it was supposed to arrive today she asked me when I would be taking my first dose.  I replied that evening.  She advised me to wait to take it in the morning.

When I asked her what difference it makes since I will be taking doses every twelve hours?  she replied to take the first dose in the morning so that I could get two doses in the same day.  I asked how my body knows between which two doses the calendar page flips?  She scrambled to quickly read through her prescription sheet for the drug, focusing again on the “taken twice daily” line.  Sigh…

I am under a time crunch to get going on this drug.  I’ve got a short window of time between business trips to see if I can get past any of the side effects that patients experience when they first start tecfidera.  When I only have a week until I have to get on a plane again, I am not going to waste a day of it waiting based on faulty logic.

Following my side effect mitigation plan from my last post, I have been taking a daily probiotic for five days now.  Last night when I got home, I took a full adult dose of aspirin as I started dinner.  Recently, my wife and I have been eating much more healthy (the subject of a future post), but for this week I am gorging on fatty foods to limit the chance of the side effects.  I ate three slices of a sausage pizza.

Then I took my pill.  We sat down on the sofa and loaded up a movie as we watched to see what happens to me.  Would I turn into a bright red lobster?  Or run into the bathroom repeatedly vomiting?

A twitter follower stated that taking chocolates helped her, so while we were waiting, we broke out a box and sampled a few.  And then….

Nothing happened.

It’s just the first dose so I don’t want to jinx it, but so far the plan of probiotic, full strength aspirin and a stomach full of fatty foods seems to be working.  I will give periodic updates as to how it is going over the first month or so on the drug but for now, I am smiling (and keeping my fingers crossed!).

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