Newbie- Travelling with/transporting biologicals

Posted by: habiba

Newbie- Travelling with/transporting biologicals - 01/10/19 05:41 AM

Happy and healthy new year to all.

Hello from a long time lurker, especially during the flare depressions when I occasionally recalled that there were others walking the streets with knives in the hips, backs, shoulders, necks, mattresses, sneezes..!

After financial and employment issues forced my change from private health insurance, and public insurance meant that mysteriously every rheumatologist in the country (Germany) was full and no longer accepting patients, I managed to score an appointment with a brilliant young doctor who discovered a cheaper new biosimilar to Humira called Amgevita.

I haven't taken any biologicals since 2014 since at that time they were not approved in Germany for non- radiological showing cases (i.e. no significant deterioration or fusion yet apparent).

The doctor told me I'd need a cool pack from the pharmacy to transport the box of 6 pens in my hand luggage together with the medical attestation.

Imagine my dismay when upon arriving I open the cool pack and discover that the ice block has fully defrosted and there is no discernible coolness inside it, meaning that the entire precious (and (*&^(*&^ expensive) contents are all only good for the next fourteen days.. so a solitary and hence rather useless dose is usable of the whole 12 week package.

Apart from screaming into the abyss there's not much I can do about it now, but I am desperate to find a foolproof way to transport them the next time I can get a prescription (April!!!!!!!!!). Can anyone share their positive experiences?

I considered either
-adding another ice pack (but this may cause the biologicals to drop below 5 degrees centigrade)
-packing the coolpack in my luggage as the cargo hold is of course much cooler during the flight than the overhead locker

Are there small excellent cooling cases people use and can recommend?

Thank you dearly for this site and for sharing.. I will never forget the first time I read through posts here and cried-laughed when someone else described the pure torture of sneezing during a flare..
Posted by: Cymro

Re: Newbie- Travelling with/transporting biologicals - 01/10/19 06:32 AM

Your best bet is to contact the manufacturer of the medication. They will sort you out with some good advice.
Posted by: habiba

Re: Newbie- Travelling with/transporting biologicals - 01/10/19 07:40 AM

Hi Cymro, they gave similar advice as the doctor, so I'm looking for specific advice, products, tactics, and thermometers from people who've actually had to transport their own medication. Experience is more helpful than theory as my expensive and useless trip demonstrates.

Found some helpful sites in the meantime but info is already four years old http://saidsupport.org/medication-travel-cooler-bag-recommendations-from-our-patient-community/
Posted by: mooman

Re: Newbie- Travelling with/transporting biologicals - 01/19/20 06:37 PM

you know humira had passed the approval to be used for quite a few months afterwards at room temperature. not that would have helped for all the pen. I find the ones used to store insulin that you can find on amazon work really well. I wish I could provide you with a link but I traveled for 24 hours from cold(europe) to (africa) with mine and I had the complete opposite problem of keeping them too cold, even after airport security opened them up to swab them.

The trick is ice packs inside a good insulated holder with a digital thermometer on the outside.