5 Signs it’s Time to Switch Your Biologic

  • Several types of biologics are approved to treat Crohn’s disease. Which kind depends on your body and what your gastroenterologist recommends. Biologics are often trial and error in the beginning until you find the right one that works for you. Here are some signs that you may want to switch your biologic for a different kind. Always speak to your doctor before changing biologic treatments.

     

    There is no difference after months of use


    There’s no definitive timeline for when a biologic will start to work. Each case is different and depends on the treatment and your body. Sometimes it will work instantly and other times it will work slowly over time. However, if several months pass with zero changes or improvement, the treatment may not be a good fit for you. Talk to your doctor about trying other biologic options.

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    Your body doesn’t respond well


    Some people react strongly to a particular biologic compared to other biologics. While you may experience certain side effects, they should be manageable. But when side effects are too severe to manage and begin affecting your life more than your Crohn’s disease, it’s time to switch to a different biologic that doesn’t elicit such a strong bodily response. Just because one biologic triggered intense side effects, doesn’t mean all biologics will.

     

    Your body builds immunity


    Like any medical treatment, your body can develop immunity to a biologic over time. When this happens the drug will stop working as well or entirely. Know that this can happen and it’s not your fault. While it can be frustrating, you can switch to a different biologic that is new to your system.

     

    Trouble maintaining remission


    When a biologic works properly, you should be able to maintain remission pretty consistently. However, if you keep having flare-ups and slipping out of remission, the biologic may not be working well for you. Talk to your doctor about trying a different biologic so you get the most benefits out of the medication and can live a healthy life again.

     

    Crohn’s disease gets worse


    Crohn’s disease can be very unpredictable and can change throughout your life. If your Crohn’s disease evolves from moderate to severe, you may need to change the type of biologic you’re taking. Certain biologics are used for different stages of the condition. Talk to your doctor about the best options for you. 

Published On: July 17, 2015