The Consumer: Exploring Choices for M.S.
By MARY DUENWALD
The New York Times
15 March 2005
An estimated 5,000 patients who had been taking Tysabri since the Food and Drug Administration approved it in late November are now advised to see their doctors for physical examinations and to consider trying other drug treatments to keep their multiple sclerosis in check or perhaps returning to them.
Those who had been in the clinical trial will be given magnetic resonance scans and other tests to check for P.M.L.
The good news, doctors say, is that most patients who took Tysabri alone and only since November are unlikely to develop progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy.
"If there is any connection between Tysabri and the leukoencephalopathy, that risk should have been removed by stopping the drug," said Dr. Patricia Coyle, director of the multiple sclerosis clinic at the State University of New York at Stony Brook. "Patients don't have to worry that two months or six months from now they're going to come down with P.M.L."
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