However, there are a couple of hurdles to clear before you can grab the tax break for medical expenses.
First, as mentioned, you must itemize your deductions. And for itemizing to make financial sense, the combination of all your available deductions would need to exceed the standard deduction, which nearly doubled as of 2018. For single taxpayers, it's $12,000; head of household, $18,000; and married couples filing jointly, $24,000. (Taxpayers age 65 and older get an additional $1,300 — so that's $2,600 for married couples.)
Second, you can only deduct qualifying medical expenses that exceed 7.5 percent of your 2018 adjusted gross income (total income minus certain adjustments). For example, if your AGI was $50,000, only medical expenses that exceed $3,750 would qualify.
"So far we're seeing more single people than married couples taking the medical expense deduction," said Bryan Bibbo, an advisor with The JL Smith Group in Avon, Ohio.
For example, he said, a single taxpayer with other write-offs — mortgage interest, charitable contributions and SALT — could find that the medical expense deduction more easily pushes them over that $12,000 standard deduction. For married couples filing jointly, the $24,000 hurdle is more difficult.
"They might have double the medical expenses, but not as much in other deductions," Bibbo said.