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CostHelper > Health & Personal Care  > Orthopedics and Injuries > Osteoporosis Treatments

Osteoporosis Treatments Cost


How Much Do Osteoporosis Treatments Cost?

 
average costWith Insurance: Copays and/or Coinsurancehigh costWithout Insurance: Prescriptions Can Run $10-$900 a Month

Osteoporosis treatment usually consists of medication that will slow bone deterioration and reduce the risk of fractures.

Typical costs:

  • For patients not covered by health insurance, the cost of osteoporosis treatment ranges from, on the low end, about $10 a month for the generic version of Fosamax, which recently became available, to about $80 a month for brand-name Fosamax or Actonel to $900 or more a month for Forteo, an injectable brand-name drug prescribed for severe cases.
  • Osteoporosis treatments typically are considered medically necessary and covered by health insurance when prescribed by a doctor.
  • For patients covered by health insurance, typical out-of-pocket costs would include a prescription drug copay, usually ranging from $5 to $150 or more, depending on which drug is used and how the insurance company classifies that drug.
Related articles: Bone Density Test

What should be included:
  • The most commonly prescribed class of drugs for osteoporosis are bisphosphonates, including the brand names Fosamax, Actonel and Boniva. They work by interfering with the action of a type of bone cell that breaks down bone tissue.
  • Another class of drugs, selective estrogen receptor modulators (SERMS), which includes the brand-name drug Evista, act like estrogen in the body without increasing risk of uterine and possibly breast cancers as estrogen could.
  • Another type of drug, Forteo, which can actually rebuild bone instead of just stopping bone loss, is a synthetic version of the hormone parathyroid. It is given by injection daily, and a patient can be taught how to self-administer it.
  • The Mayo Clinic[1] offers an overview of medications used to treat osteoporosis.
Additional costs:
  • In addition to medication, most doctors prescribe weight-bearing exercise and vitamin supplements, including calcium and vitamin D.
Discounts:
  • Walmart[2] offers the generic version of Fosamax for $9 a month.
  • Eli Lilly, the manufacturer of Forteo, offers the Lilly Cares[3] program, which provides discounted prescription drugs to those who qualify.
Shopping for osteoporosis treatments:
  • There is no physician specialty dedicated to the treatment of osteoporosis, but a primary care physician or gynecologist can treat the disease. Or, the National Osteoporosis Foundation offers a guide to finding a doctor knowledgeable about osteoporosis, as well as a doctor locator by state.
  • A doctor will help a patient to choose the best osteoporosis treatment. However, WebMD offers a guide to choosing among osteoporosis drugs.
  • Side effects of bisphosphonates can include nausea, upset stomach or heartburn. In very rare cases, they can cause osteonecrosis of the jaw, in which a part of the jawbone deteriorates. Side effects of Evista can include increased risk of blood clots or stroke. Side effects of Forteo can include an increased risk for bone cancer.
Material on this page is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as medical advice. Always consult your physician or pharmacist regarding medications or medical procedures.
 
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What People Are Paying - Recent Comments
FORTEO I CNT AFFORD THIS DRUG
Amount: $1,200.00 per month
Posted by: CLM in BRANSON, MO.Posted: September 30th, 2012 06:09PM
Brand: LILLY FORTEOInsurance: BLUE CROSS
I CANT AFFORD THIS DRUG, I HAVE BLUE CROSS THEY WONT PAY FOR THIS DRUG.
I REALLY NEED THIS DRUG I COULD TILL WITH IN ONE WEEK HOW IT HELPED ME .NOW I HURT ALL OVER MY ARMS WRIST LEGS.I CANT AFORD 1200 DOLLARS A MONTH. IHAVE BEEN ON IT FOR 7 MONTHS PLEASE HELP HOW CAN THEY GIVE U SOMETHING THAT HELPS U BU CANT AFFORD IT.AN SHAME ON BLUE CROSS I HAVE BEEN PAYING THEM FOR 20 YEARS/
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam
Generic Evista
Amount: $43.57 per month
Posted by: chris123 in Newyor, NY.Posted: April 22nd, 2010 02:04AM
Brand: EvistaInsurance: No
I do not have insurance. Got the generic version of evista online at International Drug Mart at a very cheap price. 30 tables cost $43.57
Was this post helpful to you?   yes     no Report prohibited or spam


 

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External Resources:
  1.  www.mayoclinic.com/health/osteoporosis-treatment/WO00127
  2.  www.walmart.com/cp/1078664
  3.  www.lillytruassist.com/Pages/index.aspx
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