Hey HAE Hereditary Angioedema Blog: Connect. Ask. Share.
FIRAZYR is a medicine used to treat acute attacks of hereditary angioedema (HAE) in adults 18 years of age and older.

Attack the Attacks

Talking Openly With My Healthcare Team

Published on October 08, 2014 in Attack the Attacks

Keeping an open and constructive relationship with my healthcare team is something I’ve learned to do over time, and it’s now a high priority for me. If I’m not giving them the most accurate information possible, I’m really putting myself at a disadvantage and possibly preventing them from doing their jobs. So trying to downplay how many acute HAE attacks I have, or how severe they are, is not the right attitude to have.

To keep myself accurate about how active my HAE is, I use a journal to keep a record of all of my acute HAE attacks. I try to keep the journal as up-to-date as possible and write down the attack as soon as I have the time.

For each acute HAE attack, I record the:

  • date and time I recognize symptoms
  • location (ex. arm, abdomen, leg)
  • severity on a scale that I have discussed with my doctor
  • symptom relief—the time that I start feeling a relief in the symptoms of my attack

I also try to figure out if there was a possible trigger for each HAE attack. Sometimes, but not always, the trigger is a trip to the dentist or physical trauma, but other times I have no idea what may have caused my attack. In addition to my triggers, I also try to write down any noticeable changes leading up to an attack, like changes in my mood or my energy level. 

Since there’s only so much time during an appointment, my doctor and I came up with a plan to get the most out of our time together. I try to send my journal to him a few days before each appointment for his review. This gives my healthcare provider time to review my description of the HAE attacks and also prepare topics to discuss at my appointment. Those topics include suggestions for managing attacks, trying to figure out any possible triggers, and how my treatment plan is working for me. I also prepare for my appointments by reviewing my journal and bringing any questions I have to my appointment. Then, during my appointment, I follow along in my journal as my specialist and I discuss my attacks. This allows us both to make the most out of the appointment. Talk to your own specialist about how best to prepare for your appointments.

If I’m not open and thorough with my healthcare team, they would not be able to understand what I have been dealing with or get the information that will help them treat my condition.


If you have HAE, you may want to talk with your doctor about treatment options. If you want to talk about FIRAZYR® (icatibant injection) (a medicine used to treat acute attacks of HAE in adults 18 years of age and older) with your doctor, click here to sign up for more information, including a page that you can download and take with you to your next doctor’s appointment. If you and your doctor decide that FIRAZYR might be the right treatment option for you, he or she can request a single dose of FIRAZYR as a sample for you to try.


[In response to Marsha, who submitted a comment on October 12, 2014] Thanks for your comment, Marsha. In order to provide you with accurate and useful information, I have shared your comment with the Hey HAE Team. They will provide a response very soon. I wish you and your husband both well! –Mike

October 28, 2014

The Hey HAE Team
Dear Marsha, Thank you for your question about your husband's HAE treatment. Each person's experience can be different. We recommend that you and your husband talk about his HAE experiences with his treating physician and the best method of treatment for his needs. If you would like more information about HAE, The US Hereditary Angioedema Association website (www.HAEA.org) can be a good resource. We hope this is helpful.

October 28, 2014

Add Comment

The information on this page is owned and controlled by Shire. All submissions will be reviewed and must be approved by Shire before being posted. Comments that do not directly relate to the topic, are factually inaccurate or misleading, or are spam, inappropriate, use profanity or are defamatory will not be posted.

Please keep your comments respectful, appropriate and do not reference any product names or product information. We will not post comments that include drug names or descriptions. Please note that Shire may choose not to post, or may remove, a comment for any reason at any time. Comments on the page from members of the public do not necessarily reflect the views of Shire and Shire does not endorse any content added by other users.

We are required to record and handle the submitted comments in a specific manner to monitor the safety of our product. If you have experienced a side effect or have a complaint specific to a Shire product, please contact your healthcare provider. In addition, we encourage you to report the event to us by calling +1-800 828-2088 or +1-888-300-6414, where someone is available to speak with you.

The information on this page is intended for residents of the United States only and is not meant to substitute for the advice provided by a medical professional. Always consult a physician if you have health concerns.

What is FIRAZYR?

FIRAZYR is prescribed to treat acute HAE attacks in adults 18 years of age and older.

Get the facts »