Today a present came for me in the mail. It came from the folks at Abbott who make Humira, which is a drug I am considering for the treatment of my Crohn's Disease. The drug has all sorts of positives and negatives and of course, that is something best left to a doctor, the patient and the family. If I get angsty about our next step, I will probably blog all about those.
In the meantime, I have been researching that next step the modern patient way. I have read about the options on MedicineNet, WebMd, CCFA, etc. I have read blogs and boards. I have also visited the sites related to the medications. Now, big pharma gets a bad rap. I can certainly gripe myself. However, in some cases, they do provide some really valuable patient information. I tend to take what I can get and ignore the marketing materials and push for this drug or that drug.
I signed up for the newsletter at CrohnsOnline.com. It came with the offer of a free book that I had seen on Amazon but not in real life...100 Questions and Answers about Crohn's Disease and Ulcerative Colitis. Wow! A free book. Yep, I know, mailing lists and such. I can't say that I am ever really annoyed by Crohn's mail. (not like I am when my insurance company sends me a "We noticed your blood pressure was high at the last visit, did you know we had these resources to help you and why don't you do this and this as well?" umm yeah it was high, I was seriously dehydrated and really quite sick, thanks) In any case, nearly all of the mail I have ever gotten, whether it be from a pharmaceutical company or CCFA has been helpful in some way.
By the way, if you haven't ever signed up for the CCFA mail, do so. Asacol will put you on the CCFA for a trial run if you go to their website (or at least they did) and you will still get the CCFA mailings for quite some time. Their magazine is really good in a glossy sort of way. I find the CCFA membership fees a bit to expensive for me but I do love the magazine. CCFA also has the best resources online (all free) for folks with IBD. They do great work.