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After 40 years hindered by gout, Thomas returns to music

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Thomas's Gout Story

Decades of uncontrolled gout pain forced Thomas to abandon his first love, playing the guitar. Learn about his success with KRYSTEXXA and his journey back to music.

Read transcript

Thomas voiceover: The song is entitled “One Last Dream.” And just because it's a renewal of the dream I began with. It's the only dream that I still wish to have.

Thomas: When I was younger, started to teach myself guitar, and started to get a little bit better at that and was pursuing becoming the famous singer songwriter, but that eventually faded out. And because of the gout, that fade out continued for about 45 years.

I had a spot on my toes that kept getting larger and it kept getting worse. And I finally did go in and see a professional about it and was informed that it was gout. That was in about 2014 and other signs were not readily apparent to me at that point.

Eventually other things began to get worse. And in 2019, the gout was just completely out of control and the left wrist and finger joints in particular seemed to be for me the most affected. They would turn bright red, they would swell. The pain was intense. If you were sleeping and an attack began I mean it would wake you up. It was just impossible to get any kind of relief whatsoever.

The attacks themselves would sometimes come and last for two or three weeks at a time, and then maybe it'd be good for a month or two. I was at the point of I tried to play guitar, if I moved my fingers over to play a chord, they stayed there. They literally would lock in place. You'd have to take your other hand and move.

What I was being told is everything that we can do for gout is being done. It was a dead end, that there was nothing further to be pursued, and I just felt there had to be something else out there. After the discovery on the internet of KRYSTEXXA, I voiced that possibility to my physician.

SLATE: After researching possible treatments, Thomas discovered KRYSTEXXA (pegloticase), an infused medicine used to treat uncontrolled gout.

Thomas and his doctor decided this would be the best option for him.

Thomas: Instead of treating the pain or treating the swelling, treating the symptoms, it was the only thing currently that would actually eliminate the gout, that it would dissolve the crystals.

The first is the tennis ball elbow and after the very first treatment, it turned from a more hardened mass to more of a sponge like mass. It actually had changed just in that short time. So right away we knew that something good was going to transpire from this.

The flares did occur because of the drug's ability to dissolve the crystals. That process will actually create a flare because the crystals are breaking down and they're moving. So, you can get some pain, you can get some swelling from that, but certainly not to the degree that you had previously. And it was just one of those things where all of a sudden you were aware that you weren't aware of it anymore. It was just simply no longer there.

I would say currently in every possible way, I feel better now than I probably did 40 years ago. My confidence is higher. My ability to proceed with my life the way I wish is now possible.

I am a person who has been given a remarkable opportunity. We all have dreams throughout life. To be able to play guitar is the epitome and culmination of a lifelong dream.

 

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USE AND IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION

What is the most important information I should know about KRYSTEXXA® (pegloticase)?

Serious allergic reactions may happen in some patients who receive KRYSTEXXA. These allergic reactions can be life-threatening and usually happen within 2 hours of the infusion.

USE AND IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION

What is the most important information I should know about KRYSTEXXA® (pegloticase)?

Serious allergic reactions may happen in some patients who receive KRYSTEXXA. These allergic reactions can be life-threatening and usually happen within 2 hours of the infusion.

KRYSTEXXA should be given to you by a doctor or nurse in a healthcare setting where serious allergic reactions can be treated. Your doctor or nurse should watch you for any signs of a serious allergic reaction during and after your treatment with KRYSTEXXA.

Tell your doctor or nurse right away if you have any of these symptoms during or after your treatment with KRYSTEXXA:

  • wheezing, shortness of breath, cough, chest tightness, chest pain, or trouble breathing
  • dizziness, fainting, fast or weak heartbeat or feeling nervous
  • reddening of the face, itching, hives, or feeling warm
  • swelling of the throat or tongue, throat tightness, hoarse voice, or trouble swallowing

Who should not receive KRYSTEXXA?

Do not receive KRYSTEXXA if you:

  • have a rare blood problem called glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency or favism. Your doctor may test you for G6PD before you start KRYSTEXXA.
  • have had a serious allergic reaction to KRYSTEXXA or any of its ingredients. See the end of the Medication Guide for a complete list of ingredients in KRYSTEXXA.

What should I tell my doctor before receiving treatment with KRYSTEXXA?

Before you receive KRYSTEXXA, tell your doctor about all of your medical conditions, including if you:

  • ever had any heart problems or high blood pressure.
  • are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. It is not known if KRYSTEXXA will harm your unborn baby. Talk to your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.
  • are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed. It is not known if KRYSTEXXA passes into your breast milk. You and your doctor should decide if you will receive KRYSTEXXA or breastfeed.

Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. Do not take any other uric acid lowering drug, such as allopurinol, febuxostat (Uloric), or probenecid, while receiving KRYSTEXXA.

KRYSTEXXA is recommended to be given with another prescription medicine called methotrexate. KRYSTEXXA may also be used alone. You and your doctor will decide the treatment that is right for you.

Prior to your treatment with KRYSTEXXA, your doctor may give you medicine to help reduce your risk of getting gout flares or an allergic reaction. Take these medicines as directed by your doctor or nurse. Your doctor will also test your uric acid levels prior to each treatment to monitor your response to KRYSTEXXA.

Your gout flares may increase in the first 3 months when you start receiving KRYSTEXXA. It’s important to understand that this is happening because KRYSTEXXA is breaking down uric acid in your body. Do not stop receiving KRYSTEXXA even if you have a flare, as the amount of flares will decrease after 3 months of treatment. Your doctor may give you other medicines to help reduce your gout flares for the first few months after starting KRYSTEXXA.

What are the possible side effects of KRYSTEXXA?

In KRYSTEXXA clinical trials:
The most common side effects of KRYSTEXXA when given together with methotrexate were
gout flares, joint pain, coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), nausea, and fatigue.
The most common side effects of KRYSTEXXA were gout flares, allergic reactions (including infusion reactions). See “What is the most important information I should know about KRYSTEXXA?”, nausea, bruising, sore throat, constipation, chest pain, coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), and vomiting.
This is not a complete list of all possible side effects. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/safety/medwatch or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

For additional Important Safety Information, please see the Medication Guide and discuss with your doctor.

USE

KRYSTEXXA is a prescription medicine used in adults to help reduce the signs and symptoms of gout that are not controlled by other treatments.

KRYSTEXXA is not for use in people with too much uric acid in their bodies who do not have symptoms (asymptomatic hyperuricemia).

USE AND IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION

What is the most important information I should know about KRYSTEXXA® (pegloticase)?

Serious allergic reactions may happen in some patients who receive KRYSTEXXA. These allergic reactions can be life-threatening and usually happen within 2 hours of the infusion.

USE AND IMPORTANT SAFETY INFORMATION

What is the most important information I should know about KRYSTEXXA® (pegloticase)?

Serious allergic reactions may happen in some patients who receive KRYSTEXXA. These allergic reactions can be life-threatening and usually happen within 2 hours of the infusion.

KRYSTEXXA should be given to you by a doctor or nurse in a healthcare setting where serious allergic reactions can be treated. Your doctor or nurse should watch you for any signs of a serious allergic reaction during and after your treatment with KRYSTEXXA.

Tell your doctor or nurse right away if you have any of these symptoms during or after your treatment with KRYSTEXXA:

  • wheezing, shortness of breath, cough, chest tightness, chest pain, or trouble breathing
  • dizziness, fainting, fast or weak heartbeat or feeling nervous
  • reddening of the face, itching, hives, or feeling warm
  • swelling of the throat or tongue, throat tightness, hoarse voice, or trouble swallowing

Who should not receive KRYSTEXXA?

Do not receive KRYSTEXXA if you:

  • have a rare blood problem called glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase (G6PD) deficiency or favism. Your doctor may test you for G6PD before you start KRYSTEXXA.
  • have had a serious allergic reaction to KRYSTEXXA or any of its ingredients. See the end of the Medication Guide for a complete list of ingredients in KRYSTEXXA.

What should I tell my doctor before receiving treatment with KRYSTEXXA?

Before you receive KRYSTEXXA, tell your doctor about all of your medical conditions, including if you:

  • ever had any heart problems or high blood pressure.
  • are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. It is not known if KRYSTEXXA will harm your unborn baby. Talk to your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.
  • are breastfeeding or plan to breastfeed. It is not known if KRYSTEXXA passes into your breast milk. You and your doctor should decide if you will receive KRYSTEXXA or breastfeed.

Tell your doctor about all the medicines you take, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements. Do not take any other uric acid lowering drug, such as allopurinol, febuxostat (Uloric), or probenecid, while receiving KRYSTEXXA.

KRYSTEXXA is recommended to be given with another prescription medicine called methotrexate. KRYSTEXXA may also be used alone. You and your doctor will decide the treatment that is right for you.

Prior to your treatment with KRYSTEXXA, your doctor may give you medicine to help reduce your risk of getting gout flares or an allergic reaction. Take these medicines as directed by your doctor or nurse. Your doctor will also test your uric acid levels prior to each treatment to monitor your response to KRYSTEXXA.

Your gout flares may increase in the first 3 months when you start receiving KRYSTEXXA. It’s important to understand that this is happening because KRYSTEXXA is breaking down uric acid in your body. Do not stop receiving KRYSTEXXA even if you have a flare, as the amount of flares will decrease after 3 months of treatment. Your doctor may give you other medicines to help reduce your gout flares for the first few months after starting KRYSTEXXA.

What are the possible side effects of KRYSTEXXA?

In KRYSTEXXA clinical trials:
The most common side effects of KRYSTEXXA when given together with methotrexate were
gout flares, joint pain, coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), nausea, and fatigue.
The most common side effects of KRYSTEXXA were gout flares, allergic reactions (including infusion reactions). See “What is the most important information I should know about KRYSTEXXA?”, nausea, bruising, sore throat, constipation, chest pain, coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), and vomiting.
This is not a complete list of all possible side effects. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.

You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit www.fda.gov/safety/medwatch or call 1-800-FDA-1088.

For additional Important Safety Information, please see the Medication Guide and discuss with your doctor.

USE

KRYSTEXXA is a prescription medicine used in adults to help reduce the signs and symptoms of gout that are not controlled by other treatments.

KRYSTEXXA is not for use in people with too much uric acid in their bodies who do not have symptoms (asymptomatic hyperuricemia).