Topical Skin Treatment: FSA Eligibility
What is topical skin treatment?
Topical skin treatment refers to a variety of Over-the-Counter (OTC) medical products as well as prescription medical products that treat, alleviate or prevent medical conditions and diseases of the skin. Topical skin treatments might contain antibiotics, pain relievers or analgesics, burn treatments, sunburn treatments, rash or itch treatments, and more. Topical skin treatments may be applied via foam, spray, lotion, ointment, drops, and gels. Topical skin treatments are used in contrast with enteral treatments which are ingested orally, suppositories, and intravenous treatments which are injected via hypodermic needles.
Topical skin treatments are considered eligible for reimbursement with a consumer-directed healthcare account if a medical professional has issued a prescription for the use of the topical skin treatment in order to treat, alleviate or prevent a medical condition or disease. Without a prescription, even if the topical skin treatment is purchasable Over-the-Counter (OTC), the expense is not considered eligible for reimbursement.
Topical skin treatments can be classified by many different terminologies and applications, and may be labelled based on an individual producer's marketing department claims and classifications. There are few objective standards for what defines a cream versus an ointment, for example. However, loosely, topical skin treatments can be defined by their method of application and the area of the body in which they are intended to be applied. Topical skin treatments can be applied via spray, rubbing, dropper, foaming, solids that are meant to be rubbed, patches, tinctures, etc. They may be applied to any part of the skin, or designed especially for one part of the body such as the feet, eyes, nose, throat, ears, scalp, or mouth.