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Optimizing Treatment of Relapsing-Remitting Multiple Sclerosis with Oral Therapies - Episode 11

Clinical Pearls for MS Care

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Drs Obeidat and Okai share clinical pearls for physicians taking care of patients with MS.

Ahmed Zayed Obeidat, MD, PhD: This is a very enjoyable conversation, and I hate to end it, but we have limited time. What are some of the take home messages that you have for health care providers treating relapsing remitting multiple sclerosis, and what advice also do you have for patients? So, for health care providers and patients, what are general take home messages that you greatly can share with us?

Annette Okai, MD, FAAN: It’s been an enjoyable conversation and we could go on and on, but I know all good things have to come to an end. For my colleagues, other health care providers taking care of patients with MS [multiple sclerosis], I think it’s important to diagnose and treat early. Recognize progression and make the change at a very early time point in order to give the patient the best opportunity that they can in the long-term and decrease disability progression. So, be proactive and recognize and treat as indicated. For patients with MS, it’s the same thing but in different words, that you need to be on treatment because even though we may not see all the effects of MS on the outside, or clinically, the immune system is still ongoing, and it’s best that treatment is started and continued to control the disease, to improve quality of life, and reduce disability progression so that you have a good short-term and long-term outcome. So, work with your health care provider. Have a dialogue and not a monologue, and come to an understanding, be on the same page, and get the comprehensive care that you need to control your disease on this MS journey.

Ahmed Zayed Obeidat, MD, PhD: Perfect. Thank you very much. So, it’s not only a shared decision on what medication, it’s a shared experience. It’s shared journey between the health care provider and the patient to make sure that there’s the right medication, right monitoring plan is being taken, and don’t be afraid from change. If a medication is not doing what it’s supposed to do for a particular patient, well, we have other options, right? Change. This is really important. Sometimes that’s where I’m like, “Oh it’s been too long on this medicine; maybe we can have change.” And early as possible, be proactive. I love these words. Thank you very much, Dr Okai. This has been great, and thank you for our audience for watching this NeurologyLive Peers & Perspectives. If you enjoyed the content please subscribe to our newsletter to receive upcoming Peers & Perspectives and other great content right to your inbox. Thank you everyone and thank you Dr Okai, again, it’s been a pleasure speaking to you today. Thank you.

Annette Okai, MD, FAAN: Thank you for having me. It was a pleasure being here.

Transcript Edited for Clarity