Well, it seems I will now have an expense reduction that will offset the increased payroll taxes, at least for the time being. DH had a follow up doctor appointment this morning to review the Savella medication he has been on the past couple of months. The main side effect he was having (trouble urinating) just kept getting worse and last week he was just feeling nauseous almost all day. He stopped taking it last Thursday and in about 36 hours those awful side effects went away. The Savella wasn't really helping much with the pain, anyway, at least not enough to put up with the side effects. The doctor had said at the last visit if the trouble urinating did not go away, he'd either have to stop the medication or take another medication to get rid of that side effect.
So, the doc had the same game plan going forward that we did - stay off the Savella and just continue on the 3 meds he has been on the past year or so that have seemed to help the most. He's also learning to pace himself a bit better when he does have stuff to do, so as not to over do it quite so bad (that's a hard one for him!) and use a heating pad when he has areas of bad pain.
One of the current meds had been reduced to half the dosage a couple of months ago (the thought being that anything over a certain mg per day is really just a waste and doesn't help more). So, with that cost reduction and no $130/mo Savella I am going to save about $210 a month in prescription costs. Plus, he has been going to the doctor about every 4-6 weeks the past 6 months and we won't be doing that anymore (unless he just has some worsening pain or new problems), which will also save me, as each appointment costs about $100-$130 out of pocket, since he has such a high deductible to meet. So, I just have 2 prescriptions that will cost about $65 and $80 each per month and one that is $4. I think with the medical savings we will now have I might even up DH's little $60 a month allowance/fun money I give him each month to $80 or so. Having a bit of his own money to spend has also helped his mental state of mind - to be able to use the money on things he wants or enjoys keeps him a bit occupied and not thinking of his pain all the time.
I'm hoping this year will be quite a bit less than we spent the past year on medical! I'll know the grand total of our medical costs this past year when I do my taxes and it's going to be pretty high.