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How Migraines Can Cost You Much Cash


Migraine headaches can be expensive for the sufferer. But recent studies have revealed that they can also be expensive for the family of the sufferer and even the employer of the sufferer.

A person who suffers from chronic migraine headaches is often referred to as a migraineur. Migraineurs often suffer in their quality of life as they miss some of life’s most important events due to their headaches. They are also likely to pay higher health care costs than non-migraineurs.

People who suffer from migraines may lose money due to the amount of time they may miss work due to the migraines. Sometimes they are passed over for raises and promotions, because the condition makes them unreliable in the employers’ eyes.

The actual migraine-related cost to employers is very high. Migraine-related costs to employers has been estimated to be over twenty-four billion dollars each year in the United States alone. Absenteeism, worker’s compensation, and short-term disability account for roughly half of that estimate.

These figures do not include the lost productivity of “presenteeism,” which refers to employees who report to work with a migraine and are not as productive as they should be.

The highest direct cost to employers is outpatient care, which is needed by most migraine sufferers.

Employers in the United States pay approximately $6.2 billion dollars every year on outpatient care for migraines. Prescription drugs for migraines cost employers approximately $5.2 billion every year. Additional costs are inpatient care and emergency room visits.

The employer-related costs of migraine headaches is a problem not only in the United States, but overseas as well. The United Kingdom, for example, has estimated that they experience twenty-five million days each year that are lost from work or school due to migraine headaches of workers and students. The loss in productivity is such a problem that employers are encouraging preventative treatments to reduce costs over time.

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