Managing Your Medication

Taking medications as prescribed is a very important part of managing MS. Some studies, such as this one from NCBI indicate alarmingly low levels of adherence to disease modifying therapies (DMTs). 

This article by the National MS Society in the US lists some commonly stated reasons why people stop taking medications, including side effects and dislike of needles.

If you are having problems taking medications as prescribed and/or you are experiencing side effects, you should discuss it with your Neurologist or MS Nurse. Most of the pharmaceutical companies also provide support services for people taking their medications. This may be a visiting nurse service, or a telephone information line. Your MS Nurse or Neurologist should be able to provide you with information and referrals for these services. 

This piece provides some guidance on factors to consider in managing MS medications, including a template form to complete to bring to an appointment to review medications

MS & Me Blogger Joan Jordan wrote a piece on the various ways that you can report side effects and the importance of doing so.

Renewing your prescriptions for your MS medications

  • Always make sure your prescription for your MS medication is up to date
  • If you require a new prescription from your neurologist, please give at least two weeks’ notice to the MS nurse or the neurology secretary
  • Take into consideration the time it will take to write the prescription and for it to be posted to your home or faxed to your pharmacy
  • Pharmacists cannot extend prescriptions for certain medications. Talk to your pharmacist for more information
  • Give the pharmacist a weeks’ notice to order your new medication, this will ensure that you never run out!
  • If a consultant prescribes a drug for life-long or even a period extending beyond six months it is acceptable for the GP to write a (renewal) prescription to cover the High Tech drug in question. It is vital that the consultant (i.e. the Neurologist) instructs this way – there is a section on the High Tech form asking for “length of therapy” where they can do so. People with MS can ask their Neurologists if this is a suitable option for them. 

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