January started with a lot of fear and depression. Then we discussed some common MS myths and RA myths on HealthCentral. Ampyra gets approved, I get to talk to some MSers who have used it, and we learn the price will be $12,850.
February started with LOTS of SNOW!! Discussion of diagnostic criteria and changes for clinically isolated syndrome. Types of clinical trials, phases and protocols, and patient participation. And how having two diagnoses is sometimes better than one.
March was MS Awareness and Education Month, I told my diagnosis story, and we talked about talking to our doctors on HealthCentral. The "little guys" celebrated their 2nd birthdays. Sometimes the nonsense updates are the best ones.
In April, I was privileged to meet with some MS bloggers here in the mid-Atlantic. Talked about vitamin D and obesity, folic acid and methotrexate, and biologic medications for RA. I also contemplated how my perception of insurance and pharma has changed as I've had different experiences. Then my computer went CRASH!!
May began with travel to Switzerland where I met with a few of other MSers active online. I learned that I could man-handle a bit of spasticity although I did have an embarrassing incident in the bathroom of an art museum. Rob bravely mows the jungle called the backyard and then a large portion of a tree falls after a storm.
June began with Rituxan, travel and an 11% weight loss. NMSS awards 7 grants related to study of CCSVI. I venture to Washington state where I get to meet some awesome MS bloggers before embarking on a cruise to Alaska. Fortunately, I didn't really gain much at all on the cruise. At HealthCentral, we discussed how gender affects MS.
July was special in that I got to interview my mom regarding her perspective on MS. Rob also shares his thoughts. I contemplate when learning about others teaches you about yourself. Unfortunately, I also develop phlebitis in two different veins after the Rituxan infusions the previous month. However, I was happy to begin sharing photos from the Alaskan cruise.
August was marked by the annual increase in insurance premiums. I am featured in a Momentum magazine article and begin monthly steroid treatments for the rest of the year. I still have no brain lesions, whoohoo!, at HealthCentral we focus the month on pediatric MS, and most importantly, I am still me.
September was the month I finally painted my music studio and Oscar escaped for a week. I reach a 16% weight loss for the year so far and talk about shopping for clothes. A frank discussion of RA, depression, and suicide takes place at MyRACentral. We discuss programs for patients and promotional material published by phama companies. And occasionally we all just need to take a brain dump.
In October, we learn the price for the new drug Gilenya; then we learn about financial support Novartis is offering. I share photos with you of me speaking at the 2010 ePatient Connections Conference in Philadelphia and tell you about the patient panel at BlogWorldExpo. (I realize now that I never did write a post about Las Vegas...ooops.) But Mitch of Enjoying the Ride talks to us. The doctor discovers spurs under my knee cap, I 'celebrate' my 5-year MS diagnosis anniversary, and I discuss how RA has affected me over the years.
In November, Marc "the wheelchair kamikaze" talks with us at HealthCentral regarding CCSVI. Nature leaves its beautiful mark on my front sidewalk and a curious student asks questions. Biogen announces that PML deaths number 15. I share a vlog instead of a regular post and try to prepare for the holidays.
December starts with Musette fishing for kitty cats, diverticulosis, and the need to eat more fruits and veggies. The total number of Tysabri patients who have developed PML reaches 79. I ponder what "normal tired" feels like and talk about feeling blech. Staying up through the night, I photograph the lunar eclipse which occurs with the Winter Solstice this year. Then I share a Christmas rose and talk about spending time with my nephews.
Looking back at all the traveling I had done this year and the level of activity I've maintained, it is apparent that I am doing better than during the previous two years. I suspect it is the Rituxan which has changed directions for me. Loosing weight hasn't hurt, that's for sure.
I'm really looking forward to the coming year and hope that 2011 is even better!!
Happy New Year to you and yours!