Crohn's Disease and Finances

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Regular Member

Date Joined Nov 2007
Total Posts : 497
   Posted 7/18/2010 7:50 PM (GMT -6)   
Has anyone on here ever been hit hard financially because of this disease either directly or indirectly?  Not only do I have what's left of my Remicade bills after each infusion, but I also got really sick earlier this year and was in the hospital for 3 days.  I am struggling and REALLY contemplating bankruptcy.  Anyone else in this same boat?  Thanks!

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2010
Total Posts : 403
   Posted 7/18/2010 10:04 PM (GMT -6)   
I am in your boat.. we are struggling...I was on fmla while they decided what the heck was wrong with me..than put on short term disability, than they let me go... I am trying to get approved for long term disability..hubby lost his second job because I was hospitalized twice and needed a ride home from the hospital.. we are screwed... we have so many freaking bills from the crohn's between medications, the mayo, the university, the other local hospital.. the pancreatitis.. ick.

same boat you are sucks. I am sorry you and so many of us are...but really.. we can only take one day at a time and do what we can... and always try to find something positive that keeps us going , right?

hugs to all.
40 to three wonderful kids, and wife to an amazing , supportive husband of 18 years..
Diagnosed with gluten intolerance April 2009

Diagnosed with Crohn's March 2010- Mayo Confirmed May 2010
Back on Prednisone, Colestipol.Nexium, Propranolol, Vivelle patch
No longer on Imuran due to pancreatitis
Have taken Entocort, Bentyl, Flagyl, Lomidil, Pentasa
Have had myriad of health problems attributed to many different things over the past ten years. Our family has a history of Crohn's, Ulcerative Colitis and Bowel Cancer.

Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2008
Total Posts : 383
   Posted 7/19/2010 12:13 AM (GMT -6)   
Me too. Between the crohn's, the economy, and a family of 6, we have nothing left. Hubby has been a carpenter for 22 years and can't find a job right now to save our lives. He has always been the breadwinner, so we have had to adjust and economize as much as we can. I am working so I can have health insurance, but coverage for our family it takes a big chunk out of the paycheck. Copays, tests, and I am still paying off my resection from last year. Money has always been a huge stressor for me, so of course I'm flaring, and I have to go back and talk to the Dr. cause Humira isn't working for me. Hubby wants to move to someplace he can find work, which I agree with, but that means giving up my job and health insurance which wouldn't be a good thing right now. I am praying every night for guidance on making the right decision for our family.
Dx'd w/ Crohn's in 1979 at age 13. Bad flare 2008 but no health insurance so I dealt with it. Colonoscopy in July 2009 caused a perforated colon, emergency bowel resection. 2 fistula's, perianal and perivaginal.

Humira, probiotic, a multivitamin, calcium, magnesium, zinc, and fish oil. I also take Tramadol 50 mg and Klonopin (for anxiety) as needed.

Life may not be the party we hoped for, but while we are here we might as well dance!

Veteran Member

Date Joined Apr 2005
Total Posts : 3763
   Posted 7/19/2010 1:15 AM (GMT -6)   
I honestly don't know what the solution is. We have good insurance and it covers most everything, after I/family have met our deductible for the year. With CD that was't hard. I was away for the first 2 weeks of January so I had no expenses, yet somehow I managed to meet my deductible by the middle of February. On paper it sounded like the perfect plan. A set amount without any hidden costs. But as time has gone by they are now deciding that certain things they won't cover, or at least not in the most convenient way. Like B12 shots, It's dirt cheap to do them at home, but this is not a covered expense. They will cover it If I go to my doctors office and have it done there. Common sense tells me that the doctors office is a lot more costly. But they dont'/won't look at the picture, only that they don't pay. No further decusion,

This is why I will do my best to never have a gap in coverage.
My neice was just in a car accident and she has no health insurance. She was in the ICU for 2 days and then a med/surg unit for 2 more. She has appointments with speciallists, at least on a week for the next month. She will walk away from this with a huge medical bill that she will be working off for the rest of her life. Probably won't be able to go back to college this year because of the bills. Its really no one's fault but her own and her parents, but there should have been a policy out there that she could have bought that would have been affordable.

CD 20 years officially, 30 unofficially. 3 resections '93, '95 '97
Managing with strict low residue diet, keeping symptoms to a minimum. All test show small amount of ulceration, still have occasional blockages. But still have a great time with my 2 daughters and husband!

Prednisone, 6MP,Prevacid, B12 shots, Bentyl, Xifaxan.....

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2009
Total Posts : 269
   Posted 7/19/2010 4:52 AM (GMT -6)   

I really feel for you all

It makes me really appreciate living in the UK and having the NHS

Diagnosed 2005.  42 year old female living in UK
Current medication  -  infliximab infusions, ranitidine, Vitamin B12 injections, anti depressants
My partner has UC & Crohns

Regular Member

Date Joined Jun 2010
Total Posts : 113
   Posted 7/19/2010 9:29 AM (GMT -6)   
I'm in the same boat too, it seems like a lot of us are in similar positions.

Regular Member

Date Joined Dec 2009
Total Posts : 93
   Posted 7/19/2010 10:12 AM (GMT -6)   
Such a problem for most of us. Our monthly premiums are very expensive because we are self employed and then so many of the drugs are not covered. (One is $980/month and she doesn't qualify for any financial help through that drug company because she has $500/year of prescription coverage--if you have ANY coverage through their program, you do not qualify.) High deductibles, co-pays, etc. When someone in our family gets sick, all I can think of is the financial aspect. When my daughter was first sick, we had to use our line of credit. Unfortunately, I don't think the government health care is going to take away all the problems. It will only create new ones. I noticed the medication my daughter takes isn't even offered in Canada with their health care.

Regular Member

Date Joined Jul 2009
Total Posts : 417
   Posted 7/19/2010 11:03 AM (GMT -6)   
So far we haven't been hit really hard but I know that could come at any time. we have a bit set aside (we saved our own and the rest was the tax credit for our home) for if/when it happens. Most hospitals offer financial options, have you looked into those? I know the system here has an option for 3 months where there's no interest and after that it's a low rate interest and you can do it on lower monthly payments. This is an expensive disease and I can't even fathom not having insurance to help with some of the cost. :S
Diagnosed with UC in February 2009.
Diagnosed with Crohn's Colitis December 2009.
Flaring since October 2008
Possible Rheumatoid Arthritis

Medication: Pentasa 6x daily, Imuran 50 mg, multivitamin, Vit B12 1 g, omeprazole. Sulfasalazine

Regular Member

Date Joined Jun 2010
Total Posts : 318
   Posted 7/19/2010 11:06 AM (GMT -6)   
When I got sick 10 years ago it was right around 911 in NYC so between that and the state of my husbands mind-he owns his own business-it took a dive and he had to borrow big time to stay affloat. I was forced to go back to work much too soon. It was not good and just in the last 2 years things have gotten much better-but it took a long time. I always say that this is a disease of the rich-oh, and my GI and surgeons do not take insurance and I have to go for more surgery soon and my husband is freaking out again.
UC 1996
5 asa, predisone, 6 mp
X-mas present- Dec 26, 2000, Emergency j-pouch surgery
Multiple complications, J-pouch redo- July 3,  2001.
Take down-Jan 3,  2002
Chronic pouchitis: cipro, pentassa, xifican, cortioam, canassa, leviguin, lexapro, vit D, fish oil, probiotics, lot's of other vit's
Gall bladder out-Oct 1997
Latest flare April 27 2010 Hosptial for 1 week-remciade
Possible CD, Possible pouch removal-anxiety-can you blame me?

Regular Member

Date Joined Jan 2003
Total Posts : 224
   Posted 7/19/2010 11:14 AM (GMT -6)   
I dont even know what to do about my bills. I am 20 years old and trying to start college. I was in the hospital for 45 days and had 2 surgeries and multiple procedures while there, not including the ten doctors i saw just from my office, plus the surgeon bill, infectious disease doctors, ect. I know I owe the hospital alone over $400,000 dollars. Not including what I owe the dr. offices. And then I owe another hospital about $50,000 and im only 20. I try not to worry about the bills because, even if I tried there is no way to pay them. I dont know what to do or where to turn. I was denied social security.I am just hoping I dont get denied for my student loan because of the medical bills.
20 yr old female. dxd 2002. previously on 6-mp,Entocort, Prednisone, Flagyl, Cipro, Fiber, and Remicade. Currently on Humira and Elavil. Had first resection in Oct. 2009. (half of colon and some of small intestine)

Regular Member

Date Joined Feb 2010
Total Posts : 403
   Posted 7/19/2010 2:04 PM (GMT -6)   
this is really very heartbreaking... we are all suffering enough having a chronic illness... adding financial worries really doesn't help us.
40 to three wonderful kids, and wife to an amazing , supportive husband of 18 years..
Diagnosed with gluten intolerance April 2009

Diagnosed with Crohn's March 2010- Mayo Confirmed May 2010
Back on Prednisone, Colestipol.Nexium, Propranolol, Vivelle patch
No longer on Imuran due to pancreatitis
Have taken Entocort, Bentyl, Flagyl, Lomidil, Pentasa
Have had myriad of health problems attributed to many different things over the past ten years. Our family has a history of Crohn's, Ulcerative Colitis and Bowel Cancer.

Regular Member

Date Joined May 2005
Total Posts : 166
   Posted 7/19/2010 3:02 PM (GMT -6)   
I know what you mean about the financial stress.  This is one expensive disease.  My premiums are $16,000/year with $4500 ded.   These premiums go up every year and this is just for me and our 2 kids.  I don't know how much longer we can pay these kind of premiums.  We don't qualify for any kind of assistance so eventually everything we make will be going toward insurance premiums if they keep increasing at this rate.  They were raised 20% a week after the new health care bill was passed.  I can only hope I don't live long enough to financially destroy our family because I can't afford these premiums for another 15 years until I can be on Medicare, if it's still around.
diagnosed 13 days following an MMR vaccination at the age of 44
tried Colazal, Pentasa, Immuran, Remicade, Prednisone, Cipro, Flagyl, LDN, Osiris clinical study,  accupuncture, began Cimzia 5/2009

Regular Member

Date Joined Nov 2009
Total Posts : 145
   Posted 7/19/2010 3:41 PM (GMT -6)   
We are going on 2 years without a real paycheck, and my Crohn's diagnosis came in the middle of that.  I have decent health insurance, but because I"m choosing an "alternate" path, most of it is not covered.  We are just trying to save our house right now, and I'm hoping that I'll continue to be able to pay for the things I need.  If not....I guess I'll have to look at other options for treatment.
newfoundsun  (my blog about this journey I have just started)
Crohn's diagnosed 11/12/09
Cytomel and Levoxyl for thyroid.  Supplements for all else as per my ND.

Veteran Member

Date Joined May 2003
Total Posts : 9448
   Posted 7/20/2010 7:31 AM (GMT -6)   
Zanne, a year's supply of B12 in one bottle is dirt cheap. The necessary 5/16" (I forget the guage) needles are more expensive than the B12 but not unaffordable. That would be cheaper than the gas to drive to the doctor's office. You really don't need your insurance to cover this.
My computer says I need to upgrade my brain to be compatible with its new software.

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