Vanity or lifestyle drugs are those that are prescribed by a physician for conditions that are not considered health problems and do not affect the patient’s ability to live a full and productive life. The existence of these drugs and the consumer's desire for them has sparked a great deal of debate as to what exactly is necessary for a full life and whether insurance companies should be forced to pay for drugs that do not treat medical conditions.
What Are Vanity or Lifestyle Drugs Used For?
Vanity and lifestyle drugs are used to treat conditions, that although they may not affect the physical health of a patient, can affect their emotional health. They are used to treat conditions like erectile dysfunction (ED), alopecia (hair loss, sometimes from the whole body), male pattern baldness, the effects of aging, smoking cessation, and weight loss. The is much debate about the labeling of weight-loss drugs and smoking cessation assistance as lifestyle drugs because of the potential for health problems if these issues are not resolved.
The issue with labeling medications as lifestyle drugs is the connotation that goes with it and the question as to whether treating the problem is really a choice. The 60-year-old man who wants better performance in the bedroom may have a choice, but can the same be said for the 23-year-old whose diabetes has left him with ED? How about a 21-year-old woman suffering complete hair loss or an obese child who is genetically predisposed to weight gain?
What Conditions and Associated Medications may be considered Vanity or Lifestyle?
Here are just a few of the conditions and the medications used to treat them that may be considered lifestyle problems by most insurance companies.
- Erectile Dysfunction - Viagra, sildenafil, tadalafil, vardenafil, Stendra
- Alopecia - Dritho-Creme HP, minoxidil, cortcosteroids like hydrocortisone
- Weight Loss - phentermine, Wegovy, Saxenda
- Male pattern Baldness - minoxidil, finasteride
- Smoking Cessation - bupropion, CHANTIX
- The effect of Aging on The Skin - Vitamin E Cream
Why is the Label "Lifestyle or Vanity" Drug Important?
Once a drug has been labeled as a lifestyle drug, that is one that does not treat medical health problems, most insurance programs in the United States will not cover it. These medications are often quite expensive and having to pay the total cost out of pocket is prohibitive for many people.
How to Use RxLess with Lifestyle & Vanity Drugs
Thankfully, whether your insurance covers your medication or not, RxLess can help you to lower the cost of your prescriptions. It is simple to do, and you may end up with substantial savings. Here’s how to do it:
Go to rxless.com and type the name of your prescription into the search tool. In seconds you will receive a list of pharmacies in your area, including the national chains like Rite Aid, CVS, and Walgreens, that have that medication and the discounted price you will pay.
Once you have chosen a pharmacy, simply print out or take a digital copy of the RxLess discount card and show it to the pharmacist. They will enter the plan codes and you will pay the discounted price. That’s it.