I put an awful lot of trust in my doctors, but I realize that they’re only human. They see hundreds of patients, and probably don’t think about me much after they leave the exam room. I take it upon myself to find out as much about my disease and its treatments as I can, and I don’t blindly follow any doctor’s advice. I have to understand what’s being done and accept the risks. When I see others getting less than standard care or outdated treatments, I have to speak up. I have an acquaintance whose treatment is MP, which makes her feel sick for the duration. She’s lost weight and has a poor quality of life. The suggestion to switch to thalidomide was rejected because her doctor doesn’t use thalidomide due to the problems it causes. The individual specifically mentioned the birth defects. This person is in her 80s! Of course thalidomide has side effects, especially at higher doses (Celgene says that certain side effects, such as peripheral neuropathy, are dose related). I just can’t forgive a doctor for not trying it with a patient that has such a miserable time with MP.