Costly Drug for Eczema is Approved by FDA… But What About the Food Piece?
In an article (1) in yesterday’s NY Times, we learn that “The FDA just yesterday approved a drug to treat people with a serious form of eczema, a potential breakthrough for people who have suffered for years without relief.
Dupixent, will carry a list price of $37,000 a year, a hefty price tag for patients who are increasingly being asked to pay a larger share of the drugs they take. Still, its price is a bit lower than many other commonly used biologic drugs, such as Humira and Enbrel, that treat other skin diseases.”
It goes on to explain that “Humira and Enbrel, which treat the skin disease psoriasis and other conditions, carry annual list prices of about $50,000.”
The rest of the piece goes on to discuss pricing competition between different drugs, what health insurance may or may not cover and how pharmaceutical companies “usually keep the price a secret and do not directly negotiate with insurers until the product is approved by the F.D.A., in part because of concerns that doing so could violate agency rules.”
In the entire article, not a single mention of another option that eczema sufferers might consider: what they’re eating.
Imagine spending that kind of money on a prescription without looking at what may be one of the major culprits first!
What exactly is it?
According to WebMD (2), the exact cause of eczema is unknown, but it’s thought to be linked to an overactive response by the body’s immune system to an irritant. It is this response that causes the symptoms of eczema.
Granted, many things can factor into whether or not someone develops eczema, including patches of chronically itchy, dry, thickened skin, usually on the hands, neck, face, and legs (but it can occur anywhere). In children, the inner creases of the knees and elbows are often involved. If scratched, dry patches of skin and open sores with crusts may develop and may get infected.
Without even getting into extensive research, something in that very first line says it all: An overactive response by the body’s immune system. Now, why might someone’s immune system by overactive?
How about because they’re eating inflammatory foods?
A simple way of looking at it is to say that certain foods can make the body ‘angry’ (inflamed sounds pretty angry to me!). Once the body is already angry, or on ‘high alert’, if you will, it’s easier for it to be triggered to react to things (food, pollen, pet dander, for example) that it would not typically have a problem with.
Here’s the nice thing: we can test this theory out all on our own without risk!
Just remove the foods that could potentially be inflammatory for a period of time and see how symptoms improved.
On top of that, if we add foods that are rich in Omega 3s, foods that are unprocessed, real and unadulterated, (yes- those are real foods), we can begin to create beautiful skin from the inside out.
Once we allow the body time to be nourished and supported by an alkaline forming, nutrient dense diet, we then create a window for the inflammation to decrease.
And when we start feeling better, we can really start to thrive, rather than just suffer, get by or eek along. Who wants to settle for so-so?
If medications are involved, and the food first approach works, a check in with the doctor is of utmost importance; he or she may then be able to guide you off prescriptions, most, if not all of which have side effects.
How liberating would that be?
It’s worth testing this out; what is to be lost, other than a host of meds, side effects and one more day of not living life to the fullest?