Transcript for "Patient Stories: Advocating for Yourself"

This is a transcript for the “Patient Stories: Advocating for Yourself” video found on the ORENCIA resources page.

Narrator 1: ORENCIA should not be used with other strong medicines that affect the immune system such as bDMARDs and JAK inhibitors.

Please see additional Important Safety Information at the end of this video.

Shawn: Hi, my name is Shawn and I've been diagnosed with RA and if I've learned anything throughout the years is that you have to be your own advocate and you really have to fight to get the solutions that work for you.

Early on when I was diagnosed with RA, my kids were young, and they really didn't understand what that meant.

They just knew mom wasn't free to play with them. That was tough.

While having been in the dark for a couple of years and frustrated and in pain I've really felt that there was nothing I could do. (Phone call) Yes, I'd like to make my next appointment...

Shawn: And so—when I talked to my doctor about ORENCIA, she did say that there were many options and I said, "Yes, this is the one I want." (On call with doctor) Perfect. Thank you. Bye-bye.

Shawn: And I've learned from past experiences that you have to speak up and ask for help when you need it.

[On-screen text: Knowing the differences led to bright possibilities.]

Shawn: When my doctor mentioned to me that I was dual seropositive, I didn't really know what that meant.

Narrator: Some people with RA test positive for markers in the blood called anti-CCP and rheumatoid factor. This means they're dual seropositive.

[On-screen text: Living in the light]

Shawn: I wish I would have found ORENCIA earlier in my treatment journey.

But over the last several years, being on ORENCIA, I've had fewer symptoms and am able to stay active.

More recently, I've been pushing myself. I go on hikes frequently or I go on bike rides. (Riding bike) Let's go. I even bought some motorbikes.

Shawn: Just continuing to try things and stay active.

If I was going to give someone that was newly diagnosed with RA any advice, I would say, know what you're doing, talk to the doctor and make sure you ask a lot of questions and if you're unhappy with the answers, ask more.

Reach out for help when you need it. "ORENCIA On Call," the patient support program, has helped me every step of the way.

Throughout the years, I've learned that you have to be open and honest with your doctor about how you're responding to treatment.

It has to make sense to you, and it has to be right for you.

Narrator 2: Indication/Usage and Important Safety Information for ORENCIA (abatacept)


Adult Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA): ORENCIA (abatacept) is a prescription medicine that reduces signs and symptoms in adults with moderate to severe RA, including those who have not been helped enough by other medicines for RA. ORENCIA may prevent further damage to your bones and joints and may help your ability to perform daily activities. In adults, ORENCIA may be used alone or with other RA treatments other than Janus kinase (JAK) inhibitors or biologic disease-modifying antirheumatic drugs (bDMARDs), such as tumor necrosis factor (TNF) antagonists.

The concomitant use of ORENCIA with other potent immunosuppressants, for example, bDMARDs, JAK inhibitors is not recommended.

Important Safety Information.

Inform your healthcare provider of the following, before you receive treatment with ORENCIA (abatacept):

Infections: If you have any kind of infection, even if it is small, such as an open cut or sore, an infection that is in your whole body, such as the flu, an infection that will not go away, or a history of infections that keep coming back. ORENCIA may make your immune system less able to fight infections, so you may be more likely to get infections or any infection you have may get worse.

Tuberculosis: If you have had tuberculosis (TB), a positive skin test for TB, or if you recently have been in close contact with someone who has had TB. If you get any of the symptoms of TB – a cough that does not go away, weight loss, fever, night sweats – call your healthcare provider right away.

Before you start ORENCIA (abatacept), your healthcare provider may examine you for TB or perform a skin test.

If you have or have had Viral Hepatitis.

Before you use ORENCIA, your healthcare provider may examine you for hepatitis.

If you have a history of Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary (lung) Disease (COPD).

If you are scheduled to have Surgery.

Allergies to the ingredients of ORENCIA: The ingredients of intravenous (IV) ORENCIA are: abatacept, maltose, monobasic sodium phosphate, and sodium chloride for administration.

The ingredients of subcutaneous (SC) ORENCIA are: abatacept, sucrose, poloxamer 188, monobasic sodium phosphate monohydrate, dibasic sodium phosphate anhydrous, and water for injection.

Vaccinations: If you have recently received a vaccination or are scheduled for any vaccination. If you are receiving ORENCIA, and for three months after you stop receiving ORENCIA, you should not take live vaccines.

Diabetes: If you have diabetes and use a blood glucose monitor to check your sugar levels. The infusion of ORENCIA contains maltose, a sugar that can give falsely high blood glucose readings with some monitors on the day you receive your infusion.

Your healthcare provider may tell you to use a different way to monitor your blood sugar levels.

ORENCIA for SC injection does not contain maltose, therefore, you do not need to change the way you monitor your blood sugar if you are taking ORENCIA (abatacept) subcutaneously.

Pregnancy: If you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant. It is not known if ORENCIA can harm your unborn baby. If you took ORENCIA during pregnancy, talk to your healthcare provider before your baby receives any vaccines.

There is a registry for pregnant women exposed to ORENCIA. The purpose of this registry is to check the health of the pregnant mother and her child. Women are encouraged to call the registry themselves or ask their healthcare provider to contact the registry for them by calling 1-877-311-8972.

Breastfeeding: It is not known if ORENCIA passes into your breastmilk. Talk to your healthcare provider about the best way to feed your baby if you use ORENCIA.

Skin cancer: Some people treated with ORENCIA have developed skin cancer. Tell your healthcare provider if you have a family or personal history of skin cancer, and if you see any growths or changes in the appearance of your skin during or after your treatment with ORENCIA.

If you take any other kinds of medicine, including prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal supplements.

If you are taking other biologic medicines to treat RA, such as: Enbrel (etanercept), Humira (adalimumab), Remicade (infliximab), Kineret (anakinra), Rituxan (rituximab), Simponi (golimumab), Cimzia (certolizumab pegol), or Actemra (tocilizumab). You may have a higher chance of getting a serious infection if you take ORENCIA (abatacept) with other biologic medicines.

Possible side effects of ORENCIA. ORENCIA can cause serious side effects, including serious infections. ORENCIA can make you more likely to get infections or make the infection that you have get worse. Some people have died from these infections. Call your healthcare provider immediately if you feel sick or get any of the following signs of infection: fever; feel very tired; cough; feel flu-like; or warm, red, or painful skin.

Allergic reactions. Allergic reactions can happen to people who use ORENCIA. Call your healthcare provider or get emergency medical help right away, if you have any symptoms of an allergic reaction, which may include hives; swollen face, eyelids, lips, tongue; or trouble breathing.

Hepatitis B infection. If you are a carrier of the hepatitis B virus (a virus that affects the liver), the virus can become active while you use ORENCIA. Your healthcare provider may do a blood test before you start treatment with ORENCIA.

Vaccinations. You should not receive ORENCIA with certain types of vaccines (live vaccines). You can receive non-live vaccines, such as pneumococcal and inactivated influenza (flu) vaccines. ORENCIA may cause some vaccinations to be less effective. Talk to your healthcare provider about your vaccination plans.

Respiratory problems in people with COPD. You may get certain respiratory problems more often if you receive ORENCIA and have COPD, including: worsened COPD, cough, or trouble breathing.

Cancer (malignancies). Certain kinds of cancer have been reported in people receiving ORENCIA. It is not known if ORENCIA increases your chance of getting certain kinds of cancer. Common side effects with ORENCIA are: headache, upper respiratory tract infection, sore throat, and nausea.

These are not all the possible side effects of ORENCIA.

Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects.

You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

Please read the Patient Information in the Full Prescribing Information found on