Nausea with or without vomiting of pregnancy (NVP) is the most common medical condition in pregnancy. NVP, even with mild symptoms, is associated with costs to society, patients, and the health care system.
The main objective of this study was to estimate the total direct and indirect costs per woman-week associated with the onset of NVP in Canada from the perspective of society.
A cost of illness study was performed to estimate the cost per woman-week associated with the onset of NVP in Canada, stratified according to the severity of NVP. Data were collected from 139 pregnant women, who called the Motherisk Program at the Hospital for Sick Children in Toronto. Results are reported in 2005 Canadian dollars.
From the perspective of society, the total cost per woman-week was $132 ($114 indirect and $18 direct costs), $355 ($271 indirect and $84 direct costs), and $653 ($494 indirect and $159 direct costs) for women with mild, moderate, and severe NVP, respectively. Costs increased with increasing severity of NVP.
Nausea and vomiting of pregnancy imposes an economic burden, particularly with respect to productivity losses. Limitations of the study could be potential recall bias, the unavailability of household income and follow-up interviews.