Lialda is probably the most expensive 5ASA...Asacol is much less expensive. Also, the drug companies have patient assitance programs for those who do not have insurance and cannot afford their prescript
ions. Sicklygirl (I think) gets her drugs for free, and I'm sure she'd be glad to give you some info.
I think that alternative treatments can work, but what I've learned most about
this disease so far is that what treatments work for one person, whether they be conventional or alternative, don't work for others. So it really is a process of trial and error. I tend to put more faith in conventional treatments, simply because those medicines have been very well studied, and I myself am a research scientist.
Symptoms began in November 2008, ~4 weeks after giving birth to my son.
Eased for ~3 weeks in December, possibly b/c of probiotic use?
Returned in January 2009 (with a vengeance), diagnosed with pancolitis on January 30.
Currently taking Asacol (400mg 4 pills 3x daily), Rowasa nightly, 40mg of Prednisone (quick taper), Culturelle probiotic, and Zoloft (25 mg).