• Welcome to Crohn's Forum, a support group for people with all forms of IBD. While this community is not a substitute for doctor's advice and we cannot treat or diagnose, we find being able to communicate with others who have IBD is invaluable as we navigate our struggles and celebrate our successes. We invite you to join us.

Cost of elemental feeds

I went to the pharmacy this afternoon to get a prescription processed for 100 cartons of elemental extra 028. This quantity currently lasts me for 12.5 days.

Anyway, whilst at the pharmacy the pharmacist told that it costs them over £300 to order the 100 cartons, so just over £3 per carton. I knew they were expensive but I didn't realise just how expensive. I'm not really sure why the pharmacist told me this information - I can only think it was to either make me feel guilty that I'm on such an expensive med (in which case it didn't work) or maybe she thought I'd be less wasteful if I knew how expensive these things are. It's times like this that I am incredibly grateful to have the NHS who pick up most of the cost. I must have cost the NHS thousands of pounds over the last few months...

Just thought I'd share the story in case others were interested to know just how expensive the elemental drinks are.
Hi SarahD,
Yup, they are expensive. Your cost is similar to ours. I spent about $40.00/day for VivonexPlus. When I used the currency converter from British Pounds to Canadian Dollars, your price was the same. But I had to pay for it myself!

Enjoy your your liquid food. May you soon be well enough to enjoy solid food again.
I was amazed when I looked up the cost of elemental cartons. I have had 10 a day for the last 10 weeks so am very glad I have the NHS.
Hope they are ok for you Sarah.
Hi Holly,

I just pay a standard prescription charge, so £7.65.

You can get cartons in 3 flavours and powder sachets in 4 flavours. You pay 1 prescription charge for the cartons and 1 charge for the sachets, regardless of the number of flavours you have of each.

Initially I was only prescribed two-weeks worth at a time and I was on a mix of cartons and sachets, so it was working out at about £30 a month. If you do go down the elemental diet route, I would highly recommend getting a prescription pre-payment card, which costs about £30 and lasts for 3 months. Mine saved me a fortune!

I think I am entitled to free prescriptions, as I had a a valid HC2 form untill march and just haven't got around to filling out a new form.
I don't really know how to bring up the subject with my GI as they have never mentioned this to me before. But I do have an interest in this sort of thing as I am doing a degree in nutrition.
I'm assuming you are not allowed to drink coffee? lol I would miss this!
Hi Holly,

I saw in your signature that you're doing a degree in human nutrition, that's really cool. Do you get to study things like enteral nutrition?

My GI brought the subject up with my because I was having a bad flare and I imagine if you're in remission the diet would be difficult as you wouldn't be able to tell whether the diet was helping. But if you are having problems I can't see any harm in discussing the diet option with your doctor. I get the impression that some GI's just don't even consider that diet is an option and would rather go the easy route and prescribe drugs.

I think the advice varies from one dietitian to the next, but I'm only allowed water, no coffee and no tea I'm afraid.

We don't really study enteral nutrition because this is the sort of thing dietitians cover and that is a different course. Human Nutrition is more like, how the body uses the nutrients and what happens in malnutrition, how you get dietary diseases and how to prevent them, the effects of exercise and health. We also have modules on food safety which covers food poisoning and other modules on all sorts of issues in the food system and that sort of thing. Very interesting but not anything clinical like enteral nutrition. Our course is accredited though so I can register as an associate nutritionist once I have graduated.
I am not really really ill at the moment but I can feel myself getting worse and have fistulas which I'm concerned are getting worse. I'm kind of feeling like I will do what I can to stop them getting worse.
Thanks for the info :)
my GP said the power Elemental 028 was about £60 a box, and that her PCT would complain about it...

since thought well given that I am resisting local docs wishes to put me on infliximab/remicide for a year which would cost the NHS about £20k in my estimate, its a much better route for the PCT!!

Everythings Relative!