To anyone who pronounces the title of this post as ‘medsun’, please step away from the blog now. It’s med-i-cine. God I hate that.

We discovered on Friday that B’s radiotherapy and chemotherapy will almost certainly happen under the NHS rather than his private insurance. This is because his insurance has an annual limit, and the price of beating a high-grade tumour into submission is not cheap.

To give you some idea, here is a small shopping list.

  • 1 top brain surgeon for a 5 hour procedure, £3,000
  • 1 anaesthetist for the above procedure, £1,200
  • 1 MRI, £2,000
  • 6 weeks radiotherapy & chemotherapy, £50,000
  • Each consultation with a neurosurgeon, neurologist or oncolocist, around £300

Add to this – theatre fees, private hospital accommodation, pathology and histology.

We are extremely lucky that we live in a country where we can be confident that B’s radio/chemotherapy under the NHS will be the same as it would have been if undertaken privately. The only difference is that he’ll be attending the Royal Marsden in Sutton rather than in central London. As it will no doubt be occurring during the Olympics, this is no small blessing.

I did research MRIs and and have found them available on the internet for £200, but I assume this is a cut ‘n’ shut machine made from leftover parts, and probably requires some squinting to interpret the scans. The machines cost around £1,000,000 new. I did find one for sale on eBay but B says that if we get one, the treadmill has to go.

I also investigated B’s chemotherapy drug, Temozolomide, but it doesn’t seem to have a ‘Boots own brand’ version. The drug name behind the brand is Temodal, which always reminds me of ‘Dr. Fünke’s 100% Natural Good-Time Family Band Solution’ from Arrested Development. Melissa Waniarcha may be the only reader who knows what I mean. ‘There’s no I in Teamocil, at least not where you think’.



  1. The cost of getting well in Australia is also horrendous and it would be a close finish to see which country was the most expensive.

    1. If we were in the US we’d have to sell the flat to get anything done, so here or in Australia we are both lucky.

  2. Just wondering, do you have to pay for your drugs? I understand Temedor is quite expensive

    1. Hi Glenda! No we don’t. B’s inital radiotherapy and chemotherapy was covered by his private health insurance. When that ran out (his policy has an annual claim limit) he was transferred to the NHS which is the UK’s National Health Service. Temozolomide is an NHS approved drug so there is no charge for patients.

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