Treatments For Neurologic Conditions Can Change Hairs Texture Color And Volume These Experts Explain Why And How To Handle The Changes
Kelly Baker was 13 when she was diagnosed with and prescribed divalproex sodium . The drug controlled her seizures but caused her hair to fall out, which was terrifying. “When it first started, I had no idea what was going on,” says Baker, who is now 42 and lives in Los Angeles, where she’s a family therapist. When her doctor adjusted the dose, the problem resolved. But a strange thing happened when her hair started to grow back. Her previously straight hair came in curly”not a little bit curly but the curliest hair you’ve ever seen.” Baker didn’t know how to tame it or style it or which products to buy. And she didn’t love being asked repeatedly by classmates and friends, “What happened to your hair?”
Baker’s change in hair texture is not uncommon after hair loss, says Shilpi Khetarpal, MD, a dermatologist at the Cleveland Clinic. “Different factors like hormones, nutrition, and genetics can change hair color or texture,” she says.
Baker endured her curls for two years and then found a stylist who could relax it with chemicals. “I didn’t want to look different,” explains Baker, who still takes divalproex sodium. “But I hated the process. It’s so bad for your hair, and the chemicals get into your system, and it never lasts. I’d get it done, and then my hair would grow an inch and I’d be back where I started.”
How Hair Grows
Can Tecfidera Be Crushed
Tecfidera shouldnt be crushed, or opened and sprinkled on food. Tecfidera capsules should be swallowed whole.
Animal studies show that Tecfidera may be harmful to a fetus and may not be safe to take during pregnancy. However, animal studies dont always predict what will happen in humans.
Studies havent evaluated the effects of Tecfidera regarding pregnancy or birth defects in humans.
If youre pregnant or planning to become pregnant, talk with your doctor about whether you should take Tecfidera.
If you become pregnant while taking Tecfidera, you can take part in the Tecfidera Pregnancy Registry. A pregnancy registry helps gather information on how certain drugs can affect pregnancy. If youd like to join the registry, ask your doctor, call 866-810-1462, or visit the registrys website.
Drugs For Treating Pain
Nerve-related pain isn’t like the pain of an acute injury, such as a broken arm or strained muscle. You can’t treat it effectively with typical over-the-counter pain relievers or even prescription pain drugs like Vicodin . Nerve pain requires drugs that target overactivity in the nervous system.
The neuropathy of MS is generally treated with:
- Anti-seizure drugs, such as Lyrica and Neurontin
- Certain antidepressants
Spasticity can also cause a lot of pain in people with MS. Muscle relaxants may help.
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Do I Need To Get Blood Tests While Im On Tecfidera
Yes. Before you start taking Tecfidera, your doctor will do blood tests to check your blood cell counts and your liver function. These tests will likely be repeated during your treatment with the drug. For the first year of treatment, these tests are typically done at least every six months.
Taking too much of this medication can increase your risk of serious side effects.
Will I Need To Use This Drug Long Term
Zeposia is meant to be used as a long-term treatment. If you and your doctor determine that Zeposia is safe and effective for you, youll likely take it long term.
Its not known whether its safe to drink alcohol while taking Zeposia. However, both alcohol and Zeposia can cause damage to the liver.
Talk with your doctor about whether its safe to drink alcohol during your Zeposia treatment.
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Can A Vitamin D Deficiency Cause Alopecia Areata
Studies have found that people with certain autoimmune diseases, such as multiple sclerosis or rheumatoid arthritis, have a vitamin D deficiency.
Because alopecia areata is an autoimmune disease, scientists have looked at the vitamin D levels in people who have alopecia areata. Some people did have a vitamin D deficiency, but others didnt. More research is needed before we know whether low levels of vitamin D play a role in causing this disease.
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Can Multiple Sclerosis Cause Hair Loss
One of the causes of multiple sclerosis hair loss is the use of interferons to treat some of the symptoms of the disease. The impact of the interferons is not instantaneous. Some patients use interferons for an extended period of time before they notice that their hair is thinner than it once was. That is when it will occur to them that they are experiencing hair loss. If they are lucky, they will be able to quickly make the connection between the interferons and the hair loss. If not, they might take a long time to make the connection or they might never make it.
Interferons can make the hair more vulnerable to breaking by changing its texture. Thus, any efforts to comb or brush the hair might break it. Even the fabric out of which a pillow case is made might increase the likelihood of hair breakage. Interferons can also trigger alopecia, which is the form of hair loss that occurs when hair drops out of the follicles spontaneously. This happens among some MS patients who have used these drugs for more than 3 months. Fortunately, this kind of hair loss does not have to be permanent. Discontinuing the medication upon a doctors recommendation allows the hair to start to grow back after some time. Occasionally, some patients grow back the lost hair even when they are still on the interferons. In these cases, patients are fortunate that MS and hair loss do not have to be permanently associated.
Why Might My Doctor Decide To Keep Me On The Medicine I’m Taking And Not Switch Me To The New Medicines
Giesser: If your doctor thinks your current medication is working, meaning that you are not having relapses and/or not having changes on your MRI, then he or she may say, ‘Your medicine seems to be working.’ If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it type thing.
Some doctors are pretty conservative. They may want to wait a little bit to see how the medicines behave.
Barbara Giesser, MD, professor of neurology and clinical director, University of California Los Angeles Multiple Sclerosis Program.
National Multiple Sclerosis Society.
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Additional Information On All Ms Treatments
Individuals are usually prescribed only one type of DMT during any one time period. Several large clinical trials have been conducted to study each of these drugs separately for their safety and effectiveness in MS. Although differences exist in study design and specific findings, trials generally showed these common results:
- Reduced the number of relapses
- Reduced the severity of relapses
- Reduced the development of new areas of inflammation as seen on magnetic resonance imaging scans
- Showed some evidence of delaying disease progression and/or disability
- Some may prevent or delay a second clinical attack for individuals with clinically isolated syndrome . CIS refers to individuals who do not meet the criteria to be diagnosed with MS, but have experienced symptoms.
The documented effectiveness of each of these drugs varies to some extent, and differences can be attributed to the type of the drug, dose and administration, as well as variations in study design. Stronger drugs may offer greater effectiveness but may also pose greater health risks. Additionally, the effectiveness and side effects of each drug may vary from one patient to another, so individuals need to consult with their physician to determine which treatment might be the best option for them.
Can Gilenya Cause Cancer
Similarly, what are the side effects of Gilenya?
Common side effects of Gilenya are:
- back pain,
- liver transaminase elevations, and.
Furthermore, is gilenya a chemo drug? Novartis’ multiple sclerosis drug Gilenya may be able to mitigate a painful side effect of chemotherapy in cancer patients, according to a new preclinical study. They found the drug weakened neuroinflammatory processes, which blocked and reversed neuropathic pain without altering the effectiveness of paclitaxel.
Herein, is gilenya safe?
GILENYA lowers the number of white blood cells in your blood. As a result, GILENYA can increase your risk of serious infections, some of which could be life threatening and cause death.
What happens if I stop taking Gilenya?
According to the FDA, stopping Gilenya can cause MS symptoms to worsen, and could lead to disabilities like the inability to walk. To date, there have been 35 reported cases in which patients stopped taking Gilenya and their MS symptoms worsened to the point of disability.
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Drugs For Treating Fatigue
Fatigue is among the most pervasive and ubiquitous symptoms of MS. Going well beyond “tired,” it’s a form of brutal, debilitating exhaustion that can make simple activities like getting dressed in the morning or concentrating on a movie difficult or even impossible.
Prescription medications that are sometimes used to help people with MS feel alert and be productive include:
How Is Tecfidera Used To Treat Multiple Sclerosis
TECFIDERA is indicated for the treatment of relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis , to include clinically isolated syndrome, relapsing-remitting disease, and active secondary progressive disease, in adults. 2 DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION 2.1 Dosing Information The starting dose for TECFIDERA is 120 mg twice a day orally.
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Why Do I Have Different Dosing Directions After The First Week
Its common for medications to be started at a lower dosage and then increased later. This allows your body to process a lower dosage as it adjusts to the medication.
For Tecfidera, you start with a lower dosage of 120 mg twice daily during the first seven days. After that, the dosage is increased to 240 mg twice daily, and this is the dosage you would stay on. However, if you have too many side effects with the higher dosage, your doctor may lower your dosage for a time.
Has There Been A Head
Giesser: No, as far as I know they have not been compared to each other.
The thing is, if you are going to tell a patient about a new drug, the first thing they are going to ask you is, ‘Is it better than the old drug?’ And what you have to say is these drugs have not been compared against every single one of our older drugs.
You can’t compare across trials because there are different patient populations, different conditions, and so on.
If you look at the three newer drugs, Gilenya vs. placebo reduces relapses by around 54%. Aubagio vs. placebo reduces relapse by around 30%. Tecfidera reduces relapses in the neighborhood of 50%.
It suggests that some of the newer drugs are more effective than our older drugs, but only relatively, because there hasn’t been a head-to-head comparison.
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Is Alopecia Areata Curable
It cannot be cured however, its possible to regrow hair. For some people, regrowth will happen without any help. Because alopecia areata cannot be cured, people who have regrowth can have more hair loss later. Some people have cycles of hair loss and regrowth.
If your hair doesnt regrow on its own, medical treatments may help.
There are many treatments for alopecia areata, and scientists are studying new possibilities. To see the treatment options, go to Alopecia areata: Diagnosis and treatment.
ReferencesKorta DZ, Christiano AM, et al. Alopecia areata is a medical disease. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2018 78:832-4.
Lakhmiri M, Cavelier-Balloy B, et al. Nivolumab-induced alopecia areata: A reversible factor of good prognosis? JAAD Case Reports. 2018 4:761-5.
Lee S, Lee H, et al. Comorbidities in alopecia areata: A systematic review and meta-analysis. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2019 80:466-77.
Paus R, Olsen EA, et al. Hair growth disorders. In: Wolff K, Goldsmith LA, et al. Fitzpatricks Dermatology in General Medicine . McGraw Hill Medical, New York, 2008:764.
Strazzulla LC, Wang EHC, et al. Alopecia areata: Disease characteristics, clinical evaluation, and new perspectives on pathogenesis. J Am Acad Dermatol. 2018 78:1-12.
Thompson JM, Park MK, et al. Race and alopecia areata amongst US women. J of Investigative Dermatology Symposium proceedings. J Investig Dermatol Symp Proc. 2018 19:S47-S50.
Does Tecfidera Cause Weight Gain
If youre concerned about weight gain while using Tecfidera, talk with your doctor. They can suggest ways to reach or maintain a suitable weight.
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What Should I Know About Getting Vaccines During My Zeposia Treatment
You should avoid getting live vaccines at certain times before, during, and after your Zeposia treatment.
Live vaccines have a weakened form of the bacteria or virus theyre meant to help prevent. When your immune system is healthy, live vaccines usually dont cause infection. But if your immune system isnt healthy, your body may not be able to fight the weakened bacteria or virus in the live vaccine. This could lead to infection, and the vaccine may be less effective.
Because Zeposia use may weaken your immune system, you shouldnt get any live vaccines:
- 1 month before starting Zeposia treatment
- while taking Zeposia
- at least 3 months after stopping Zeposia treatment
For more details, see Zeposia and vaccines in the Zeposia interactions section above.
In certain cases, you may need to receive the chickenpox vaccine before using Zeposia.
If you dont know whether youve had chickenpox or received the chickenpox vaccine in the past, your doctor may test your blood. If you have chickenpox antibodies in your blood, it means that youre immune to chickenpox and dont need the vaccine. If you dont have chickenpox antibodies, then you may need the chickenpox vaccine before taking Zeposia.
Before you use Zeposia, check with your doctor to see if your vaccines are up to date.