I was on copaxone for about a year. I had the "normal" range of side effects (though my swelling was smaller than a kiwi). Learning more about DMTs I wish I had never wasted my time on copaxone, simply because as an MS medicine/DMT it is not
First, I'm a MS patient for 30+ years and not
a doctor. Remember that.
But his idea of "the early stages of MS" and recommending copaxone is wrong-headed IMO. He's using what is called the "escalation model" of treating MS. In short, that model is to start with a cheap medicine with few side effects (often copaxone) and when you get more lesions (each lesion is literal brain damage) then escalate to a better, more expensive DMT. For-profit insurance corporations love
that model, but for us patients is it the best?
What I the patient want is to avoid lesions/brain damage. I want the most effective medicine with few side effects -- and I don't care one bit about the health insurance company's profits. Here's a video of one MS specialist neurologist in Ohio explaining his view of the escalation model
There are a range of various drugs that can be used as DMTs -- but there's really not that many.
Since knowledge is power, some info: Here is a PDF file
from the Swedish Neuroscience Institute in Seattle which is a nice summary of DMTs. That file breaks the DMTs down into 3 categories: pills, injections, and infusions.
from a presentation which was given at the Rocky Mtn MS Center focusing on Ocrevus. It has a table at about this point
which summarizes some of the popular DMT options and their effectiveness, impact on brain atrophy, and side effect ratings. In that summary table you'll see ratings of how ineffective
copaxone (glatiramer acetate
) is compared to other DMTs according to that MS center.
And that same MS specialist doctor/neurologist in Ohio mentioned above (he's a mainstream MS doctor who likes making YouTube videos, not some sort of oddball) has many videos on other MS DMTs and MS topics; I highly recommend them