Personalized Medicine

Personalized medicine, in which medical care and treatment is tailored to the individual patient, can lead to better diagnoses, earlier interventions, customized treatment, and drug therapies that are more efficient. In short, personalized medicine means making treatment as individualized as the disease. Recently, experts from the Mayo Clinic Center for Individualized Medicine shared five key…

A Broader Perspective

Medication non-adherence gets a lot of attention – and for good reason since non-adherence contributes to unfavorable patient outcomes, unnecessary hospitalizations, and even patient mortality – yet non-adherence is not the only important medication issue deserving attention from the health care team. In fact, some experts now suggest that medication non-adherence is just the tip…

Texting For Meds

Could better medication adherence be just a “text away”? According to a new analysis taking a closer look at several previous studies about adherence, when patients receive text reminders about their medication, adherence rates go up. Way up. Looking at medication adherence data from approximately 2,700 patients with chronic diseases, it was found that an…

The Next Wave of Hepatitis C

Despite a few years of good news with hepatitis C – with several new medications bringing cure rates up to 99% – there is also some bad news that must be acknowledged. Hepatitis C infection rates are actually rising in certain populations. The most at-risk population experiencing this hepatitis C spread is that of young,…

Understanding Immuno-Oncology

The field of immuno-oncology combines an understanding of how the body’s own defenses (e.g., the immune system) can be harnessed in the fight against cancer. Cancer cells, although different than the body’s healthy cells, find ways to disguise themselves so that the immune system doesn’t recognize them as non-self and target them for destruction. Immuno-oncology…

Coping With ‘Financial Toxicity’

Multiple myeloma, a type of cancer affecting the bone marrow, will be diagnosed in an estimated 27,000 Americans this year. Advances in research are expanding treatment options and improving outcomes in multiple myeloma patients, but these new medications often come with a higher price point. The expensive treatments for this disease have triggered alarming developments:…

When Price Stands in the Way

Medication non-adherence can be traced back to numerous causes. For some patients, the side effects of a given medication become too burdensome. Sometimes it is simple forgetfulness that keeps a patient from faithfully taking all prescribed treatment. And then there is the cost burden of treatment. Price barriers account for a significant slice of the…

New Promising Tool for Psoriatic Arthritis

Psoriatic arthritis, being slightly less common than rheumatoid arthritis, garners less research than rheumatoid arthritis. However, more than 2 million Americans struggle with the devastating effects of this disease, which causes chronic, painful inflammation of the joints and connective tissue. It’s common for psoriatic arthritis to develop about a decade after psoriasis. Cosentyx® (secukinumab) is…

MS Changes With the Seasons

Multiple sclerosis (MS), for most people, has an unpredictable way it changes over time. While MS is generally progressive, meaning it gets worse with time, there are periods of remission and periods of relapse. Naturally, things that make a relapse more likely are worth avoiding and anything that keeps disease progression at bay is worth…

Timely Treatment

When one analyzes the medical records of 1.6 American adults, it turns out there’s a lot to be learned there. Researchers with the Chronic Hepatitis Cohort Study (CHeCS) did just that starting back in 2006 and tracked the ongoing health of those with hepatitis for the next numerous years. As the CHeCS researchers uncovered connections…

World Hepatitis Day

One of the key messages of today July 28th, World Hepatitis Day, is simply this: hepatitis C is a preventable and treatable disease. The World Health Organization created World Hepatitis Day to raise awareness about the massive number of people already infected with one of several hepatitis viruses, including the hepatitis C, and how anyone…

What If A Pill Doesn’t Make It Easier?

At first glance, it would seem like a slam-dunk idea: improve patient medication adherence by switching from an injectable medication to an oral one. An easy-to-swallow pill must be better than an uncomfortable needle stick, one would assume. Yet this is not necessarily the case. For example, with multiple sclerosis, many patients actually stick to…

Staying With the Patient

Medication adherence issues account for a significant portion of avoidable health care costs each year, through drug waste, treatment failure, and medical complications. Identifying ways to improve adherence ripples out positively throughout the health care system – benefiting the patient, payers, and all other key players. The pharmacy model at BioPlus Specialty Pharmacy focuses on…

Cancer Gone…But Challenges Can Remain

Even years after cancer enters remission or is cured, the story is not necessarily over. There is evidence from multiple sources showing that side effects and related issues can linger, causing ongoing problems for cancer survivors. Bringing this little-known problem into the light of day can help cancer survivors deal with the issues head-on for…

Making Assumptions

Many physicians would likely be surprised to learn that their patients are not as faithful at taking important medications as they think. Medication adherence continues to be a drain on optimal treatment outcomes for serious diseases. HealthPrize Technologies, an industry-leading medication adherence and digital patient engagement company, recently surveyed physicians about adherence. The physicians surveyed…

Biosimilars: Close to the Real Thing

The issue of “biosimilar” medications has been under debate for years. Now, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is on the cusp of approving the first biosimilar. In case you don’t know, biosimilars are less expensive versions of already approved biological medications used for cancer, autoimmune, and other diseases. Biologic medications are typically large…

Cancer: Cure Vs. Control

Not every form of cancer can be cured. Sometimes the best outcome is living with cancer as a chronic condition, as one might with diabetes or heart disease. Controlling – rather than curing – cancer is more likely to be the appropriate course of action with these cancers: ovarian, chronic leukemia, some lymphomas, and metastatic…

Following the Thread of Cancer and Genetics

People who undergo genetic testing for potentially inherited cancers generally do so to be better prepared to understand and deal with their personal cancer risk. This information, however, can also be shared to help cancer researchers in their important work. PROMPT (Prospective Registry of Multi-Plex Testing) is a new online registry in which individuals can…