- Patient Education
Our nursing staff is expertly trained and updated at least annually on all injectable medications prescribed for MS. If a self-injectable medication is prescribed by your physician, a one-on-one training session will be provided to the patient and caregiver(s) involved in administering the medication.
All trainings take place in our Patient Education Suite which helps eliminate interruptions and allows for focused teaching time. Although most trainings can be accomplished within 1-1 1/2 hours, there is no time limit for training sessions. We recognize that each patient comes to us with unique needs and must learn at his or her own pace. In addition, we strive to provide sufficient time to answer any questions as they arise during the training session. Our goal is for the patient to feel comfortable with taking their medication prior to leaving the Center.
During the training session, nurses will instruct the patient on all aspects of their prescribed medication including mechanism of action, side effects and proper location of injection sites. If appropriate, use of an automatic injection device is also reviewed. The nurse will demonstrate step-by-step how to properly set up and administer the medication using both verbal instruction and hands-on practice with a replica of an injection site. Patients and family are strongly encouraged to practice administration of their medication on this replica with saline injections at this time.
Most injectable medications must be started at low doses and gradually increased over time. This is called titration. As part of the injection training, the nurse will inform the patient of how to properly titrate medication. The patient and nursing staff remain in close contact on a weekly basis to discuss when to increase the dose of medicine, any side effects, and answer any questions that may arise. This will continue until the patient is comfortable administering their medication and is on a full dose without any difficulty.
Most patients are able to learn quickly in this atmosphere and refresher trainings are always available by appointment.
Some oral medications also need to be increased slowly. Should a patient be prescribed one of these medications, our nursing staff is well versed in proper titration. Through our daily phone line, we are available to help determine proper and safe medication increases. As always, any side effects of medications or questions that may arise can also be discussed at this time.