"The groundwork of all happiness is health." - Leigh Hunt

Harvard Health Ed Watch: IV treatment of thyroid eye disease

Perhaps you may have seen. This ad About a drug for thyroid eye disease. If so, you is perhaps wondering what thyroid eye disease is—and why the lady within the ad is wearing five pairs of sunglasses without delay. Read on for the answers.

What is thyroid disease and the way does it affect the eyes?

gave Thyroid gland In front of the neck is a small, butterfly-shaped organ. It releases thyroid hormone, which helps control many functions within the body. If it secretes an excessive amount of thyroid hormone (Hyperthyroidism) or little or no (Hypothyroidism), could cause painful and sometimes serious symptoms, including changes in muscle strength, bowel function, and heart function.

An overactive thyroid gland could cause thyroid eye disease, which causes swelling and inflammation within the tissues across the eyes. This condition could cause eye irritation, dry, tight feeling within the eyes, tearing, pressure or pain behind the eyes, and blurred or double vision.

About half 1,000,000 people within the United States suffer from thyroid eye disease. It affects Up to half with Graves' diseasean autoimmune disease characterised by an overactive thyroid.

Advertising of thyroid eye disease: pitch and evidence

The ad opens with a lady wearing large, black sunglasses, identified as an actual patient named Jane. “With thyroid eye disease,” she explains, “I was always wearing sunglasses to hide my bulging eyes. I wore them everywhere.”

She removes her sunglasses to disclose that she is wearing one other pair underneath. In fact, he has worn three pairs of sunglasses and can later wear five!

As the music turns upbeat, she continues: “But then my doctor recommended Tapeza, a prescription drug for thyroid eye disease, and I didn't have to hide so much.”

A more common type of bulging eye is along with his next words: “In a clinical study, more than eight out of 10 patients taking Tapiza had less bulging eyes. And nearly seven out of 10 experienced double vision.” See improvement.”

Warnings about this drug

You know what's next: a voice-over warning about potential negative effects. For Tepezza, these include:

  • Infusion reactions. Now we learn that Tapiza is an intravenous (infused) drug. A course of treatment is eight 90-minute infusions, each separated by three weeks. Infusion reactions may be mild or severe, including allergic reactions (reminiscent of rash or hives) and other negative effects that occur during or shortly after the infusion (reminiscent of fever or sweating).
  • When to call for advice “Tell your doctor right away if you have symptoms such as high blood pressure, fast heart rate, shortness of breath, or muscle pain,” the voiceover instructs. Keep in mind that the majority individuals with hypertension haven't any symptoms, but when severe, it might cause headaches, dizziness, or chest pain.
  • Before starting treatment. If you may have diabetes or inflammatory bowel disease, or should you are pregnant or planning to develop into pregnant, it's best to tell your doctor before starting treatment. This is because Tapiza can harm a developing fetus or worsen other diseases.

A serious breakthrough: controlling thyroid eye disease

As the industrial winds down, Jane is back, removing her fifth pair of sunglasses in a row to disclose normal-looking eyes. “I look like my old self again. Now I wear sunglasses because I want to.”

“Ask your doctor if Tepezza is right for you,” advises the narrator visiting Jane's before-and-after photos on the web site. I check; They are impressive.

The ad becomes valid.

Ad accurately describes.

  • Symptoms of thyroid eye disease
  • How the condition changes appearance and could cause embarrassment.
  • The results of a A short study Investigating the risks and advantages of Tepezza.

What else do it is advisable to learn about thyroid eye disease treatment?

  • You should treat your eye condition in addition to your thyroid disease. Medicines or surgery are sometimes good options. Radiation therapy may be effective, but sometimes makes thyroid eye disease worse.
  • Selenium, a mineral supplementsome experts have suggested.
  • Quitting smoking is at all times beneficial, partly because smoking can worsen thyroid eye disease.

If thyroid eye disease is mild, moisturizing eye drops, eye shades or patches, or dark sunglasses could also be enough.

If thyroid eye disease is moderate to severe, options include:

  • Medicines that suppress inflammation or an overactive immune response. Examples include glucocorticoids, teprotomumab (Tepiza), mycophenolate mofetil (Celcept), tocilizumab (Actamera), or rituximab (Rituxan).
  • Surgery to remove excess tissue across the eye.

Small studies, reminiscent of those cited within the commercial, may not detect all negative effects, especially rare ones.

Last, but definitely not least: Tapeza is pricey. A yr of treatment can cost $300,000 or more — and insurance coverage varies.

The bottom line

I still don't know why the lady within the ad wears multiple pairs of sunglasses without delay. Perhaps that is to emphasise how serious she is about hiding her eyes. Or possibly it's only a technique to get our attention. Marketing strategies for direct-to-consumer drugs may be much more mysterious than the diseases they hope to treat.

If you're concerned that you'll have thyroid disease or thyroid eye disease, confer with your doctor. An expensive latest drug could also be an option for some people, however it pays to find out about all the choices. Academic Medical Centers, NIHor a Medical Society You are more likely to be given more reliable and balanced information than a drug ad.