Thank you for your past answers regarding the drugs I am taking for Ulcerative Colitis. My insurance company is again suggesting a less expensive alternative to Dipentum. This time they have suggested Balsalazide. From what I can tell, this drug is a little closer to Dipentum in the way that it is delivered (than Apriso). However, I am not sure how (or if) it differs from Dipentum. Could you explain? As I mentioned in one of my previous posts, I have been in remission for over 15 years and do not want to risk a relapse by taking something inferior.

Hi Pattie,
The treatment of ulcerative colitis has improved the lot of sufferers singificantly in the past few years. With the availability of compounds such as Olsalazine (Apriso), mesalamine (Dipentum) and balsalazide (Salsalazine), control of symptoms is now possible over long term. Large studies have shown that the three compounds in this group have very similar efficacy, I would believe that there should not be any risk in changing over from Olsalazine to Balsalazide. I base my opinion on the large amount of work that is published in this area. Additionally you have been treated in the past and are now past the acute phase of treatment, what you are searching for is a drug for maintenance of the remission, balsalazide should do the job very well. We also have to consider the opinion of your insurance and their willingness to pay.
I would urge you to read the paper at the url:
Had you een in the active phase of therapy I would have been concerned, but since you are in the maintenance phase I see very little risk in changing to Balsalzide.
Best wishes
Ravi Ghooi


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Dr. Ravindra Bhaskar Ghooi


I can provide information on drugs and medicines, their actions, uses, interactions and adverse effects. To avoid confusion, generic names of medicines may please be provided. I am a pharmacologist, having worked on animal and human pharmacology, and presently I am the Dean of Bilcare Research Academy, where we teach courses on clinical research. We dont work on saturdays and sundays, hence questions reachng me on these days will be replied on Monday, please bear with me.

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