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

Day by Day

Talking With Your Employer

Published on June 18, 2014 in Day by Day

I believe that honesty is the best policy, but for years I hid my HAE from my employer. I assumed he’d use my HAE as a reason to hold me back, since it is a chronic condition that is hard to understand. So I just called in sick whenever I had an HAE attack instead of trying to explain what I was going through. However, I felt that missing so many days made me seem unable to do my job.

Oddly enough, prior to having an approved treatment for acute attacks of HAE, it seemed that a majority of my HAE attacks happened to occur on the weekends. If I spent all Sunday night dealing with an abdominal attack, I’d have to call in sick on Monday because I was just too exhausted to go to work.

My boss was getting tired of my frequent absences, so I told him about my condition. I do not think he understood the severity of HAE and instead rolled his eyes. At that time, I didn’t have any printed material to show him, so he would have to take my word for it…and he took my word as an excuse.

That is, until my wife had to call in sick for me one day while we rushed to the hospital. When I woke up, I found both of my eyes swollen completely shut and swelling developing in my face and throat. My wife and I know that we should always go to the hospital for a laryngeal attack, and that’s exactly what we did.

Shortly after reaching the hospital, I was intubated and placed in a medically induced coma to help my body rest. When my boss came to visit me in the intensive care unit, I was still in a coma, and my entire body was swollen.

From that point forward, he understood why I missed so many Mondays. 

Today, there are more resources available to help us explain HAE to others. Websites can be a place to direct employers for information.

I’ve also discussed my plan of care with my employer. If I should have an HAE attack at work, I want my employer to know how to help me.

My office manager has a list of emergency contacts in case I have an attack at work and need to go to the hospital. It’s reassuring to know that someone at work knows what to expect if I have an HAE attack.

 

What about you? How do you explain HAE to your employer? Leave a comment.

 

--Mike

 

*Please note Shire is not responsible for the content provided on any third-party websites.

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 »

Upcoming Events