Monday, October 11, 2010

FDA and Insurance Companies Play 'God'

. . . "no, you can't have it until way say so!"

Expecting to start my new chemo treatment (of Abraxane) on September 28th, my husband and I were stunned to hear that I am now subject to waiting for all the red tape. While Abraxane is FDA approved for breast and lung cancer, it has not yet been approved by the FDA for pancreatic cancer. Google it for pancreatic cancer and you'll find studies have shown it has had good results. Thus, the testing has been done. But...FDA, dragging their feet, hasn't put it out there for use by doctors on their patients, yet. SO, our insurance company has to go through a review process whereby they are the decision makers on whether or not I get my much needed, grabbing-at-straws-now treatment! To top it off, they want to take their sweet time and have stated that a decision may be reached in about 3 weeks. If something works, why would they not let someone have it? Why let the person suffer in more pain...allow more damage to be done...or let the person die? Do they know that cancer doesn't stop growing to appease their schedules?

So, the pain progresses and I'm on a steady regimine of Advil. It doesn't quite stop the pain entirely, but anything stronger makes me tired, thus, all I want to do is sleep. I'm suppose to go back to my Oncologist on October 19th for the Abraxane infusion IF the treatment has been approved by then. I hope I don't end up in some insurance beaurocratic limbo, unable to get any treatment done while in the meantime insidious little mutinies are allowed to progress unchecked. Meantime, I feel like I have something stuck in my throat. Oh's a flippin' tumor!

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~Marilyn's Silly Website~


LION GIRL said...

Marilyn, is there any channel to voice out the issue rather than waiting for the insurance co to work on its red tape?
Eg. write into some newspapers column or medical assc etc. Make yourself heard! Your doctor has any suggestions? Or your insurance agent for the matter.
You got me boiling with your dilemma.
Hopefully you have good readers who could give you solutions to this issue.
Stay strong and be strong! There is definitely a way to go about it.

~ Sandy said...


I was furious too. How frustrating. It's bad enough to be in pain, but to endure this silly delay is even more painful.

I wonder if there's someone we can write to. I'm with Lion Girl, I know there's a reader out there who knows something we might do to help the progress. Someone to hear our protests!

I sure hear ya, Marilyn. After a surgery many years ago, taking the pain meds left me sleeping around the clock. Poop!

Take care Marilyn! Lots and lots of us are praying for release of this new med. My thoughts are with you every day. Stay Strong!


Judy Nolan said...

Marilyn, just want to let you know that I am thinking about you, and sending positive thoughts your way. I am glad the pharma company is helping you out.

Anonymous said...

Marilyn, so glad to have found your blog (Sassa Lynne), I'll be checking in from time to time.

Prayers coming your way from across the Pond. Unfortunately the NHS here often behaves like this too, so I can appreciate how you feel.

God Bless.