Your Medical Expenses May Be Tax Deductable

Tracy Davenport, Ph.D. Health Guide
  • It's Tax Time Again!


    If 2007 was the first year for you or a dependent to live with a chronic illness, please read on. You may be able to deduct some of the money you spent in 2007 on medical expenses.


    The IRS allows some out-of-pocket (not already reimbursed to you by insurance) medical costs to be deducted on your taxes, if your deductible expenses are more than 7.5 percent of your adjusted gross income. As an example, if your adjusted gross income (as calculated on the IRS form) is $50,000, then 7.5 percent is $3,750. So, if your adjusted gross income was $50,000, and your deductible medical expenses are more than $3,750, then you can deduct these costs.

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    According to the IRS, a medical deduction might include payment to a doctor, lab fees, or the cost of prescription medication. You can also deduct transportation costs to a doctor's appointment, which includes the actual cost of gas, or the standard rate of mileage. Parking fees and tolls can also be included.


    Deducting expenses related to special medical diets becomes somewhat more complicated. IRS ruling 55-261 states that medical care includes the cost of special food if the food alleviates or treats an illness, is not part of the normal nutritional needs of the tax payer, and the need for the food is substantiated by a physician. If chronic reflux has caused you to modify your diet significantly, you might be wise to address this issue with an expert in tax preparation.


    To learn more about possible medical deductions, visit

Published On: March 24, 2008