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In this MD Newsline exclusive interview with neurologist Dr. Mitzi Williams, we discuss barriers to NMOSD treatment adherence and the latest research on treatments for NMOSD.

MD Newsline:

What do you think are the biggest barriers to NMOSD treatment adherence? 

Dr. Mitzi Williams:

“The biggest barriers to NMOSD treatment are very similar to those that we see for MS and involve access to care. Access to care is especially important because our FDA-approved medications for NMOSD are infusible therapies. So, our patients face barriers like transportation to an infusion center and making sure they have insurance coverage.

Even if the medication is covered for free, often there are costs associated with the infusions. Social determinants play a large role in successfully navigating these barriers.

Lastly, because NMOSD relapses often can be catastrophic and extremely disabling, it’s very important that our patients with NMOSD are as compliant with their treatment as possible to prevent disability.”

 

MD Newsline:

Which of the latest research studies on NMOSD are you most interested in regarding treatment safety and efficacy? 

Dr. Mitzi Williams:

“I’m very excited about all of the treatments and a lot of the research concerning NMOSD because it is a form of demyelinating disease that we now have an antibody that we can test for. Hopefully, learning how that pathway works will lead to more advancements in understanding and diagnosing MS, which is a very similar but distinct disease.

I’m also very excited because we now have FDA-approved treatments for NMOSD. I hope that our treatments continue to expand so we can help prevent disability for people living with this condition.”

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Responses have been condensed and lightly edited.

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