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IRS.gov Website
Rev. date: 1/4/2018


Medical and Dental Expenses

Tax Topic 502
rule
If you itemize your deductions for a taxable year on Form 1040 (Schedule A), Itemized Deductions, you may be able to deduct expenses you paid that year for medical and dental care for yourself, your spouse, and your dependents. You may deduct only the amount of your total medical expenses that exceed 7.5% of your adjusted gross income. You figure the amount you're allowed to deduct on Form 1040, Schedule A.
Medical care expenses include payments for the diagnosis, cure, mitigation, treatment, or prevention of disease, or payments for treatments affecting any structure or function of the body.
Deductible medical expenses may include but aren't limited to the following:
If you're self-employed and have a net profit for the year, you may be eligible for the self-employed health insurance deduction. This is an adjustment to income, rather than an itemized deduction, for premiums you paid on a health insurance policy covering medical care, including a qualified long-term care insurance policy covering medical care, for yourself, your spouse, and dependents. In addition, you may be eligible for this deduction for your child who is under the age of 27 at the end of 2017 even if the child wasn't your dependent. See Chapter 6 of Publication 535, Business Expenses, for eligibility information. If you don't claim 100% of your paid premiums, you can include the remainder with your other medical expenses as an itemized deduction on Form 1040 (Schedule A).
You may not deduct funeral or burial expenses, over-the-counter medicines (i.e., medicines or drugs that aren't required to be prescribed), toothpaste, toiletries, cosmetics, a trip or program for the general improvement of your health, or most cosmetic surgery. You may not deduct amounts paid for nicotine gum and nicotine patches that don't require a prescription.
You can only include the medical expenses you paid during the year and you can only use the expenses once on the return. You must reduce your total deductible medical expenses for the year by any reimbursement of deductible medical expenses and expenses used when figuring other credits or deductions. This is true whether you receive the reimbursement directly or it's paid on your behalf to the doctor, hospital, or other medical provider.
To determine whether an expense is deductible, see Can I Deduct My Medical and Dental Expenses? For additional information on medical expenses, including who qualifies as your dependent for purposes of this deduction, how to figure, and how to report the deduction on your return, see Publication 502, Medical and Dental Expenses.