My name is Sherry and I’m from Oro Valley, AZ. I take a drug called Topamax to treat my intense migraines, but it’s so expensive that I have to cut down on other areas of my life.

I’ve been taking Topamax for 25 years, and back then, I remember paying around $50 for a 30-day supply. These days, it costs about $280 out-of-pocket for a three-month supply, even after insurance coverage. I have to continue using the brand-name drug because the generic doesn’t control my migraines as well. 

I don’t have any choice but to keep using Topamax because it really reduces the number of migraines I get. Without this medication, I’m completely non-functioning. My migraines can last for up to four days and prevent me from working and carrying out my daily routines. When I get a migraine, the lights are blinding and I’m constantly nauseous. It feels impossible to think and it’s even painful to lie down — you don’t want your head to touch anything. Topamax allows me to live a more normal life.

Topamax is the most expensive medication I take, but I’ve seen the prices of my other drugs increase as well. Ascomp with codeine, another medication for headaches, costs $30 for a month’s supply even though it used to cost $5. Similarly, Synthroid now costs $20 instead of $6 for a 90-day supply. These expenses take a big hit on my budget and make it impossible to put money away for emergencies.

Drug companies are ripping off older people simply because they can. I’m sick and tired of working for what I have and losing everything because I need to pay for my medications. And yet it doesn’t feel like anyone is paying attention to this issue. It’s time for our lawmakers to take care of America’s seniors and work on getting drug prices down once and for all.