John Corboy, MD: Taking Patients Off Of Disease-Modifying Therapy

October 10, 2018

The professor of neurology at the University of Colorado posited that if certain criteria are met, it could be appropriate to take patients with multiple sclerosis off of DMT.

“If there are all these changes that occur and if these medicines are seemingly less effective as people age, is there some time where you can perhaps take people off medication?”

In the last few decades, the number of multiple sclerosis therapies has grown exponentially, opening new doors to treatment and offering physicians more and more options. While the popular debate surrounds the best treatment strategy, one topic not as often discussed is when, and if, halting disease-modifying therapy can be an appropriate option.

For John Corboy, MD, a professor of neurology at the University of Colorado, this is an essential conversation. It is well known that younger patients experience the brunt of the early disease’s effects, but as Corboy pointed out, as many patients age, relapses diminish and patients shift into a slower progressive phase. At this point, the current disease-modifying therapies have proven to be less effective than desired.

Which, for Corboy, signals the question: If there are changes occurring and the medicines are becoming less effective, is there a point where it becomes safe and appropriate to take patients off disease-modifying therapy? At the 34th Congress of the European Committee for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis (ECTRIMS) in Berlin, Germany, Corboy sat with NeurologyLive to discuss this debate in the space, and share his thoughts on it.