Hello All ~
Some of you were following this thread about
taking ZYTIGA. With everyone's input, it has become an informative thread over time. So I thank everyone for their responses !
The cost per month for a prescript
ion of ZYTIGA can be around $5,000 or even more. That's a staggering monthly cost, to be sure, but I'm thankful this medication exists for those of us in need. My oncologist filled out the prescript
ion, then I was contacted by a medication company known as DIPLOMAT, and they ship the prescript
ion directly to me each month.
My insurance covered most of the prescript
ion cost, then through the DIPLOMAT company, they worked my final cost down to a $10 co-pay each month. The ZYTIGA pills can not be directly picked up at a local pharmacy, due to the high cost. So they have to be privately shipped to you. This was new to me. Since I am working each day, I have the ZYTIGA pills shipped directly to my place of work, where the secretary signs for the package when it arrives in the mail.
I guess the DIPLOMAT company will call me each month, check in with me, ask me whether I am experiencing any side effects, and then continue to ship the medication to me as long as it is still working and prescribed by my oncologist.
I take the 4 ZYTIGA pills in the morning when I wake up, because they have to be taken without food. Then I have to take 2 very small steroid pills with lunch and dinner to help my body tolerate the ZYTIGA, so that is part of the protocol for this medication.
So far, I have no known side effects, other than the hot flashes which were already a part of my life with the hormone shots the past two years. The hot flashes are perhaps a bit more intense since starting the ZYTIGA, but certainly tolerable. I seem to feel them most in the evening, for some reason.
I was concerned that the ZYTIGA would impact my energy level, but my energy has stayed intact, for which I am thankful. So I am able to continue with my full-time career at the present time.
I had been on the ZYTIGA pills for just 20 days when I took a new P.S.A. test and my P.S.A. dropped from 0.45 to down just below 0.10, after just 20 days of taking the medication. So I was able to see the impact of the ZYTIGA after just 20 days. I wonder if my P.S.A. will drop even further after another month or so of taking this new medication?
I just saw my oncologist and he said that a rapid response to ZYTIGA can be an indicator of longer-term success with this medication, at least based on his experiences to date with other patients. I honestly feel that oncologists are learning more over time as they work with their patients and begin to have a greater range of experiences with these prescribed medications. I think doctors are still finding out how their patients respond to ZYTIGA and which side effects can emerge. Some patients don't have a positive response to Zytiga, some have a response that lasts a period of months, while some patients seem to have a longer response to the medication. My oncologist is very proud of one of his patients, as that patient has been taking ZYTIGA over the course of three years running. We all need a beacon of hope when we are starting a new treatment.
I realize that five or ten years ago, this drug wasn't even an option, so I am thankful to the scientists and researchers that are dedicating their lives to research that has given us more time and hope. We have to keep doing what we can do in pursuing these new treatments, with the breakthrough treatments and medications that are becoming available in recent years. I truly hope more breakthrough medications become available soon for everyone that is in need, now or in the future.
I realize not everyone responds to ZYTIGA, depending on each individual case. I wanted to share the results that I have seen in such a short time, in the hopes that it will ENCOURAGE someone else out there that might be reading this thread and considering the use of ZYTIGA, now or in the future.
I was thinking of the old 1970s rock song by THE EAGLES entitled "The Long Run" and hope that I can have a "Long Run" with ZYTIGA ! Maybe I better listen to that song right now for some inspiration ...
Stay strong in the battle, my friends !
Post Edited (ISU-CycloneFan) : 8/31/2015 8:10:03 PM (GMT-6)