Tony Bodmer, Columnist, MSnewsChannel.com
My name is Tony Bodmer and I am 34 years old. This is my 1st Column!
looking forward to writing more here and hopefully educating some
people about MS. I know I didn't know anything about it til the day I
was diagnosed and there's too many people out there who are just not
educated on what MS is. I was diagnosed with ms 9 years ago when I was
25. The first 5 years were pretty bad until I was referred to an MS
specialist by my neurologist. She finally got me on a med that actually
worked and, it's kind of leveled off now. I was diagnosed right when
tysabri came out for the first time. I had one infusion and three days
before my 2nd infusion, it was taken off the market.
So I went to copaxone. It seemed to have the least side effects from
what I read. The first few months were great as I never missed a dose.
Then I got tired of having to give myself a shot every single day. I
started missing shots every once in a while until I started missing
weeks at a time of shots. I had an exacerbation when my neurologist
said it was time for a new drug.
I went to betaseron and
was so excited to only have a shot every other day. It went well for a
few months until I had another exacerbation. That is when my
neurologist referred me to the MS specialist. She gave me 3 med
options, all of which were chemo drugs. I went to see my neurologist
again after I saw her to see what he thought of what she said. His
response to pretty much everything she said was "Tony, I'm not familiar
with that." I chose the drug rituxan and Dr. Hawker became me full time
neurologist. Before her I was having 3 or 4 exacerbations a year.
After her and the rituxan, the exacerbations stopped. I haven't had one
in almost 5 years now.
Dr. Hawker was only comfortable
keeping on rituxan for a few years and then, as she put it, "Who knows
what else will be out by then." So after 3 years, I stopped rituxan and
gilenya, the first oral ms drug was out. I jumped all over that one.
Unfortunately, Dr. Hawker left her practice to go work for Eli Lilly,
the pharmaceutical company, and I started seeing the neurologist who
took over for her at Ohio State. He's not much older than me and I'm
happy to have a neurologist who isn't gray haired and looks like he will
retire in 5 years.
When I was first diagnosed, I heard a
doctor talk about how important it was with ms having a good medical
team you were comfortable with. I have the best PCP and neurologist I
could ask for.
Other things about me, besides ms are I
love watching baseball and football. The Reds and Bengals are my
favorites as I've lived in Cincinnati my whole life. I remember the
last time the Bengals were in the Super Bowl in 1988 when I was in the
4th grade and the last time the Reds won the World Series in 1990 when I
was in the 6th grade.
Music and movies are also a big
part of my life. My favorite band is Cake and while I have many
favorite movies, if I had to pick one it would be The Shawshank
Redemption. Since MS came along, I've really gotten into movies with
hopeful messages, like that one.
Until next time!