November 23, 2021 One drug treatment cost $45,500; here’s why prescription prices are so high and vary so much

In the middle of her workday, Eszti Pigniczky felt strange.

Everything looked blurry, as though she was seeing objects through water. She couldn’t remember names or certain words.

Physicians at University Hospitals Bedford’s emergency department administered an intravenous dose of Alteplase, a clot-busting drug that can reverse the effects of a stroke if given soon after symptoms beginWithin an hour, her vision cleared. After a night in the hospital, Pigniczky went home.

Two months later, the bill arrived: $45,500 for 100 mg of Alteplase.

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