I received great news this week- Cigna approved the first phase of the stem-cell transplant which is pre-transplant testing.  Apparently they approve each phase.  Pre-testing, pre transplant procedures, transplant, then post-transplant care.

Then today I received the email below from Northwestern:

Hi Ellie,

I just heard from our financial liaison that you have been approved by Cigna for a pre-transplant workup, which means we can schedule you for pre-transplant testing. That includes an echocardiogram, EKG, chest x-ray, labs, psychosocial eval and PFTs (breathing tests). We will then submit the results to your insurance company and they will respond based on the pre-transplant testing with an approval or denial.

I’m attaching a dental evaluation form. You will need to have a dental checkup/cleaning and please have your dentist fill out the clearance form.

You should be hearing from Mayra or Kim Bracy in the next week or two to start scheduling your pre-transplant testing.

Once we have a decision from you insurance, we will plan the Aubagio washout.

Thank you,


She doesn’t mention here about the study neurologist or when randomization occurs so I’m still keeping everything crossed.  One hurdle at a time.