Colesevelam is a generic prescription medication. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved it to help lower low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol in certain adults and children ages 10 to 17 years.
For more information about colesevelam’s uses, talk with your doctor or pharmacist.
Here are some details about colesevelam:
- Drug class: bile acid sequestrants
- Drug forms: oral tablets, powder
- Brand-name version: Welchol
Read on to learn about colesevelam and cost, as well as how to save money on prescriptions.
As with all medications, the cost of colesevelam can vary. Factors that may affect the price you’ll pay include your treatment plan and your insurance coverage. The pharmacy you use can also affect the retail price.
To find out what the cost of colesevelam will be for you, talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or insurance provider.
Here are answers to some frequently asked questions about drug cost and colesevelam.
Does colesevelam come as a powder? If so, how much does this form of the drug cost?
One of colesevelam’s forms is a powder and the cost may vary.
To take the powder form of colesevelam, you mix it with a liquid and drink it.
It’s possible that you’ll pay more for the powder form of colesevelam than the tablet form. The powder form comes as a 3.75-gram (g) packet. The tablets come in one strength: 625 milligrams (mg).
The cost of the powder form of colesevelam also depends on your treatment plan, your specific insurance coverage, and which pharmacy you use.
For more information on how much you may pay for colesevelam, talk with your doctor or pharmacist.
Does the brand-name version of colesevelam cost more than the generic? If so, why?
Yes, the brand-name version of colesevelam can cost more than the generic drug.
The brand-name version of a drug is typically the first version that is approved. More time and effort are required to first approve a drug, which may cause the drug to cost more. With generics, part of the work has already been done, so the drug is approved more easily, and the manufacturer can charge less for the medication.
Colesevelam is a generic drug, which means it’s an exact copy of the active drug in a brand-name medication. A generic is considered to be as safe and effective as the original drug. And generics tend to cost less than brand-name drugs.
Colesevelam is available as the brand-name drug Welchol. If your doctor has prescribed colesevelam and you’re interested in using Welchol instead, talk with your doctor. They may have a preference for one version or the other. You’ll also need to check with your insurance provider, as it may only cover one or the other.
To find out how the cost of Welchol compares with the cost of colesevelam, talk with your doctor, pharmacist, or insurance provider.
Note: In addition to being approved to lower LDL cholesterol, Welchol is approved to treat type 2 diabetes. For more information about treatment with Welchol, talk with your doctor.
If you take colesevelam long term, here are some ways you may be able to lower your costs:
Getting a 3-month supply
You may be able to get a 90-day supply of colesevelam. If approved by your insurance company, getting a 90-day supply of the drug could reduce your number of trips to the pharmacy and help lower the cost. If you’re interested in this option, check with your doctor or insurance provider.
Using a mail-order pharmacy
Colesevelam may be available through a mail-order pharmacy. Using this type of service may help lower the drug’s cost and allow you to receive your medication without leaving home. Some Medicare plans may help cover the cost of mail-order medications. You may also be able to get a 90-day supply of the drug via mail order.
If you don’t have health insurance, talk with your doctor or pharmacist. They may be able to suggest online pharmacy options that could work for you.
If you need financial support to pay for colesevelam, consider looking into websites that offer cost resources and information. Two such organizations are:
These sites can provide details about drug assistance programs, ways to make the most of your insurance coverage, and links to savings cards and other services.
Now that you’ve learned about cost and colesevelam, you may still have some questions. Talk with your doctor or pharmacist, who can provide personalized guidance on cost issues related to you and colesevelam. But if you have health insurance, you’ll need to talk with your insurance provider to learn the actual cost you would pay for the drug.
Here are some other resources you may find helpful:
- Medicare drug coverage. To learn about Medicare coverage for drugs, see these articles about Medicare Prescription Drug Plans, drug coupons and Medicare, and the Medicare drug list.
- Save money. Explore this article for tips about how to save money on prescriptions.
- Information about high LDL cholesterol. For more information about high LDL cholesterol, see our cholesterol hub and cardiovascular health hub. You can also refer to our lists of cholesterol articles and cardiovascular articles.
Disclaimer: Medical News Today has made every effort to make certain that all information is factually correct, comprehensive, and up to date. However, this article should not be used as a substitute for the knowledge and expertise of a licensed healthcare professional. You should always consult your doctor or another healthcare professional before taking any medication. The drug information contained herein is subject to change and is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. The absence of warnings or other information for a given drug does not indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective, or appropriate for all patients or all specific uses.