Update on Biologic request

I have written recently about how my rheumatologist suggested I start on Etanercept. That was in February and I hadn't heard from anyone since. Today I have had an appointment from the Biologics Assessment clinic for 15th June. What happens at this clinic? I didn't even know I would be attending it. So now I will have to raise my steroids more as I can't do with a lower dose until then. Am I likely to not qualify? Will they take word of what my rheumatologist has told them? I wonder if I am getting my hopes up and it won't happen.

7 Replies

  • Hi

    Wow that's a long time to wait from being told you meet the criteria to actually getting started!

    The biologics clinic is really just part of your rheumatology team, working for and alongside your rheumatologist. It's often run by the specialist nurses in your team but still under your consultant.

    If your consultant has already agreed to start you on biologics, then that should be what happens. They will do a few more tests at your first appointment to make sure you are ok to start biologics, test for tb and chest X Ray I seem to remember. Then they will go through practical stuff like getting the drugs delivered and organising nurse to come out and show you how to do it.

    They won't need to "take your word", they will have the consultants report with them in clinic.

    I'm sorry you've had such a long wait, but hopefully it will be worth it and enbrel will work well for you .....good luck

  • There are hoops to be jumped through to be allowed biologics.   A DAS score has to be done twice around a month apart and bloods, chest xray etc.  I think you need to speak with your Rheumy nurse for clarification as this looks as if that would be the start of the process and it is still a long time away and they may be able to book you into an earlier clinic if necessary.   Farm

  • I had my chest x rayed in February.

  • Still worth phoning your rheumy nurse to check where you are in the approval process.  If your case has been approved, and the funding agreed, then this is just a final check that you're ok to go on biologics.  

    However, do make sure as I agree with Farm that if this is still at approval stage then you need to bring it forward and need to check that by taking more steroids you won't fail the criteria.  

  • I am going to phone my rheumy nurse to find out if I have been approved, thank you for your help.

  • That was the same as me I'm waiting to go on a biologic and I've heard nothing yet so I phoned them this morning as I'm a bit worried as my left hands swollen up and is black and blue so there going to send me an appointment out for the next couple off weeks and I've to get my hand scanned

  • I also would have thought that the assessment clinic was just the part of your rheumy team that does the final assessment before biologics.  Unless you've got quite a lot better since February it should all be fairly routine.

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