Andre Watson: "Try a Trial"
Andre Watson believes in clinical trials, to help himself and to help others also living with lupus. To date, he has participated in five studies and would not hesitate to consider taking part in others in the future.
One trial Andre participated in looked at the effectiveness of CellCept® (mycophenolate mofetil) to treat lupus nephritis. CellCept is a prescription medication approved to help prevent the body’s immune system from rejecting a transplant organ such as a kidney as a foreign substance. While CellCept is not approved for use in lupus patients, some physicians prescribe it to help control the immune system. For instance, Andre continued treatment with CellCept, and his nephritis is currently in remission.
In another trial he came up with an important finding on his own! The study tested the effectiveness of a rheumatoid arthritis treatment, rituximab, for treating lupus. Andre commented, “I never learned if I was taking rituximab or a placebo, but I do know I was feeling better. However, I also learned that it’s okay to start a trial and then decide to stop.”
Andre finds participating in a research study also helps his morale. “I feel like I’m doing something to make myself feel better and to help someone else feel better. It is worth spending time doing something positive than spending time feeling hopeless.”
His strongest motivation to participate is to help others. “Even if a particular trial does not help me directly, my being in it could help someone else. The more people that get involved in lupus research, the more we get done.”