I was asked fairly recently if there is some good, unbiased, material to help identify the best Interferon. Alas if only such information did exist. On the other hand we probably all know that a combination of Glyconutrients and LDN will almost certainly cure you! 😉 Here is my slightly modified email:
As far as the medicine I’m not sure an unbiased review exists. All of the studies are basically funded by the drug companies which is a bit of a conflict of interest. My $.02 is that all of them are about the same, with possibly the exception of Tysabri but that isn’t much of an option. 😉 There does seem to be some indication that Rebif is more effective than Avonex – at least during the first 2 years. Of course that is probably due in no small part to it being over 3x’s the amount of medication and gets spread throughout the week. Also, the only once a week Avonex injections supposedly hurt pretty bad; probably due to them being IM – I think this is the same case with Betaseron. With the new needles on Rebif I can barely feel the injection – which is definitely a plus. I have not had Copaxone so I don’t have that to compare to, but I would expect it to be similar to Rebif just with the old larger sized needle (and smaller is better!)
At this point a big deal is picking something that can work with your lifestyle. If you absolutely hate shots then that would rule out Rebif/Copaxone. Betaseron is currently running a promotion where the first couple of months are free. Rebif injections are probably the least painful. And on and on. If your quality of life is ruined by an aspect of one of the medicines or you stop taking it because of side effects, etc. then it really does no good.
Personally, I am a big fan of Rebif, but as long as you go on one of the ABCR drugs you will be making a good decision.
On another note I know when I was diagnosed that I wanted to go on the absolute best medicine regardless of the frequency, pain, etc. I thought that Copaxone was the best, my Neuro disagreed, but the point was I was willing to take a daily injection if it was the best. Now I can’t imagine taking something else unless it is a lot more effective.
To further complicate issues the medicines tend to work differently in different people. Another of the many joys of MS. If one doesn’t work out either effectively or in regards to quality of life then just switch to another.
An additional item after I wrote this was that I’ve never seen a MS medication (other than Tysabri) advertise that it was more effective than Rebif. They all advertise their own benefits but I don’t recall seeing one that said they are more effective. If this is indeed true is it a quiet concession by the drug companies that Rebif is typically more effective at reducing lesions/relapses?