Diuretics like Lasix help your body reduce excess fluid that may be built up in the body due to certain health conditions. If your physician prescribes this medication for you, coverage through your Medicare benefits may be dependent on several factors.
Conditions Treated by Lasix
Lasix, a brand name version of furosemide, treats edema, or swelling due to fluid build-up in the body. Several health conditions can cause edema, but the most common ones are heart failure, kidney disease and liver disease.
Dosage for Lasix is based on weight, with the starting dose often low and increased gradually in order to monitor for any development of side effects. The typical prescription may require you take the medication by mouth up to two times a day, with or without food.
Benefits and Risks Associated with Lasix
Diuretics are often called “water pills” since they help reduce fluid retention by prompting your body to produce more urine. This helps relieve tension inside of your blood vessels, which then lowers your blood pressure.
As with many prescription medications, there may be side effects while taking Lasix. Due to the way diuretics work, you should monitor your hydration carefully to avoid dehydration. Your health care provider may also order regular diagnostic tests to review your mineral levels and reaction to the medication.
Once-a-day prescriptions should be taken earlier rather than later in the day to avoid sleep disruption at night. Twice-a-day prescriptions should be spaced out as described by your doctor, but most physicians recommend taking the last pill no later than 4 hours before you sleep to avoid the need to wake up for a bathroom break in the middle of the night.
Your prescribing physician should be informed of any other medications or supplements you may be taking. This can help you avoid any potential interactions between one medication and another. Your doctor may advise you to adopt a different medication schedule if you are currently prescribed a drug that interacts poorly with Lasix.
If you undergo any other diagnostic tests for reasons unrelated to the condition Lasix is prescribed to treat, you should let the testing provider know. It’s possible for Lasix to interfere with the accuracy of some lab tests.
Medicare Coverage for Lasix
Original Medicare benefits, known as Part A and Part B, do not cover most prescription medications. However, Medicare recipients have options when it comes to enrolling in a prescription coverage plan. Part D prescription drug plans are sold as standalone plans or packaged alongside Part C Medicare Advantage plan benefits.
If you are currently enrolled in a Medicare Supplement Plan, or Medigap plan, you would need to enroll in a standalone Part D plan or cancel your Medigap plan before enrolling in a Medicare Advantage plan with prescription drug coverage.
Some Medicare recipients are eligible for Medicaid’s Part D Extra Help program. Each state sets their eligibility requirements, so you can contact your local office for more information about dual eligibility.