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  Renal Nutrition
Question submitted on 11/24/05 by julietamv to Mary Ellen Hansson:

Dear Ms. Hansson,
     I have patients prescribed TUMS as Phosphorus binder 
because they cannot afford Phoslo or Renagel. How effective 
will it be to control P- levels among dialysis patients?
  Response provided on 11/25/05 by Mary Ellen Hansson:


Tums comes in several strengths, from regular Tums, Tums 
EX, to Tums Ultra.  The more calcium found in the binder, 
the greater potential binding power of the product.  
Calcium has been a very common binder since we found that 
aluminum had so many health hazards for ESRD patients.

If you add up the cost of the particular Tums product that 
your patient is needing, you may find that it would be 
cheaper for your patient to use one of the other binders, 
be they Phoslo, Renagel, or Fosrenol, that are available.

Educate yourself by talking with your social worker 
regarding the various Medicare Part D program options.  
Not all of the companies allow individual medications 
automatically, most seem to be on the second tier level 
that I have looked at so far.  These changes will take 
place as of January 1, 2006, for the patients who have 
been on Medicaid, and for those who opt to use the plan.

Anytime patients are prescribed a product they cannot 
afford, we involve our social workers immediately to see 
if there is another way around the system for those 
patients.  Usually, an alternative can be found that 
doesn't have to exceed the total KDOQI recommended level 
of calcium intake daily.

Mary Ellen


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Mary Ellen Hansson


  • BS Home Economics/Foods and Nutrition from Northeast Missouri State University 1984

  • MEd Nutrition and Dietetics from the University of North Carolina - Greensboro in ...    More info...

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