How Much Does a Rituxan Infusion Cost?
Rituxan is a prescription drug used to treat a variety of medical conditions. It is usually administered in as an infusion through an IV and is considered as the first line of treatment for quite a number of medical conditions. When used with methotrexate, which is another prescription drug, Rituxan has the capacity to alleviate symptoms associated with rheumatoid arthritis. It is also effective when treating cancer as it interferes with the growth of cancer cells within the body. The drug is also used in treating non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, and when combined with steroids, it can treat rare disorders that cause blood vessel inflammation.
How much is it?
- On average, a vial of Rituxan can cost $550, and the number of vials being used during an infusion session will depend on the medical condition being treated. However, most sessions use an average of about 10 or more vials. This, coupled with additional drug charges and other hospital charges, the charges are between $9,000 and $15,000. The average cost of one complete round of treatments (two infusions) can cost upwards of $20,000 to $25,000.
- However, if you have health insurance, most plans will cover a portion or all of the treatment. Since all policies vary, be sure to talk with your provider to see what they cover. If you need a new policy or want to switch, consider browsing through hundreds for free at eHealthInsurance.com.
- A user on the forum HealthCentral.com claimed that she was charged $11,288 to $18,544.
What is going to be included?
- Rituxan will target the protein on your B cells, which are part of the body’s immune system. However, those with arthritis and other problems will find that their B cells will not work the way they should. Since they do not interact properly, the drug can help remove the harmful B cells, controlling the inflammation in the blood.
- Each Rituxan infusion session generally takes around 6 hours. During this period, an IV is attached to the patient and the prescribed dosage administered by professional medical personnel. In most instances, other drugs are also administered depending on the medical condition being treated. However, a patient might be kept longer at the medical facility for the side effects of the medication to wear off. The following infusion can happen around 15 days later.
- The drug is one of the world’s best-selling cancer drugs and is approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.
- This drug is commonly used for those suffering from rheumatoid arthritis.
- The effects can take up to 6 weeks after the first infusion and can last up to 9 months.
- Side effects include lower blood pressure, flu-like symptoms, dizziness, back pain, and itchiness.
What are the extra costs?
- The extra costs that must be kept in mind when thinking about Rituxan infusion include lab test fees since a patient must first undergo a lab test before an infusion so as to ascertain the required dosage. Consultation fees which most medical specialists charge and the statutory hospital charges should also be considered.
- There is not guarantee that Rituxan infusion will cure the medical problems of the patient. Therefore, the Rituxan infusions may need to be repeated in the future.
- There will be doctors appointments needed before the infusions take place, and there will also be at least one needed after the infusions to see whether or not the treatment has shown improvements.
Tips to know:
- For starters, there are various medical conditions that can be further aggravated by this drug. As such, you should notify your doctor if you have any of these conditions before you get an infusion. These conditions include liver disease, hepatitis B, lung disease, breathing disorders, a history of heart disease and any form of kidney disease.
- Kidney failure is one of the concerns for people who are being treated with Rituxan infusions. If there is any change in the amount or urine output, tell your doctor immediately.
- Because dizziness is a common side effect of this drug, you should avoid driving or using heavy machinery. It is also suggested that you limit the amount of alcohol you drink.
How can I save money?
- The best way through which an individual can save money when receiving this form of medication is through health insurance. You should contact your insurance provider and work out a payment plan for your treatment regime.
- Eligible patients may be able to take advantage of lower costs through the RITUXAN for RA EXPERIENCE.