The Costs of Migraines

Detailing the costs migraine sufferers endure.

The financial costs of migraines in the United States is $78 billion annually. Someone who requires treatment for chronic migraines can expect to spend $8,500 to $9,500 a year while those with episodic migraines may spend $2,000 a year.

According to an analysis by Hazard et al., an individual migraine sufferer can expect to lose over $4,000 annually in productivity. If one in three American adults suffers from migraines, imagine how much productivity is lost altogether.

Suffering from migraines incurs personal, career, and financial costs for an illness that is still treated far too lightly by the public and some of the medical establishment. We outlined the various costs of migraines.

Personal Costs

If you suffer from chronic migraines, every relationship you have suffers along with you. You miss important events and may be forced to cancel plans for fun excursions due to the onset of a migraine. Family gatherings are no fun when you must retreat to a dark room in an attempt to ease your aching head.

Career Costs

Absenteeism impacts your ability to work, cheating you of opportunity after opportunity for fulfilling, lucrative work. An Integrated Benefits Institute Report states that poor health costs the US economy $6 billion annually, which still does not provide enough sick days to the nation’s workers.

If you cannot work due to chronic migraines, your chances of earning a living or keeping a permanent job are significantly reduced. Long-term career success remains out of reach.

Financial Costs

The financial costs of migraines can reach $17 billion annually for medication and treatment.

Most medications are symptomatic treatments only. They include anti-depressants, anti-nauseants, non-steroidal anti-inflammatories and other pain relievers. Depending on the medication, the cost can be pennies a pill or extremely expensive.

  • Some patients choose alternative medications. Stress relief therapy and relaxation techniques round out the most sought-after treatments.
  • Others find themselves seeking treatment in emergency rooms, clinics, and medical offices.
  • Diagnostic and lab testing add to the financial burden.

More money is paid out for management of migraine side effects, while the indirect costs of lost wages and productivity, disability, and other non-medical expenses account for a share of your wallet.

Surgery and surgical neurostimulation are recognized treatments often covered by insurance. However, you can face bills for consultation, anesthesia, procedural expenses, as well as a potential overnight stay in a hospital.

BOTOX(R) does not become available until you have attempted and failed to respond to at least two other preventative treatments, increasing clinic visits, medication costs, and time lost to unmanaged pain.

If you come from out of state, accommodations and travel take another chunk of change.

Financial Help Is Available

Sometimes, to stretch their dollars further, patients opt to take smaller doses of their medications or skip doses to ration it. Others try to decrease the frequency of their migraines by limiting their exposure to trigger behaviors and activities.

However, more financial assistance is available than you may realize.

  • Most insurance covers all or part of migraine care depending on the form it takes. It often pays for the bulk of surgical interventions.
  • Clinics offer a range of self-pay options and plans for patients without insurance or who have high deductibles.
  • Pharmaceutical companies offer savings cards to reduce the fees and expenses of their medicines.
  • The FDA recommends 155 units of BOTOX per treatment, each of which may run $300 to $600. If insurance guidelines are followed, you plan may cover a series of BOTOX treatments.

Suffering from migraines can cost you in more than money. Your relationship with your friends and family also suffers. Migraines diminish your quality of life and your potential lifetime earnings, perhaps even your ability to hold a permanent job.

Fortunately, you can obtain affordable treatment. Contact our offices to discuss the options. We are happy to work with you so you can get your life back.

Get started today. Let our migraine specialists show you how we can help.