Cost of disorders of the brain in Italy

Maura Pugliatti, Patrik Sobocki, Ettore Beghi, Stefano Pini, Giovanni B. Cassano, A. Carlo Altamura, Sara Pozzoli, Giulio Rosati

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The aim of this study was to estimate the cost of "brain" disorders in Italy. Country-specific prevalence and health-economic data on addiction, affective, anxiety and psychotic disorders, tumours, dementia, epilepsy, migraine/other headaches, multiple sclerosis, Parkinson's disease, stroke and head trauma were reviewed. Direct medical/non-medical and indirect costs were computed. Population-based samples and national or regional registries were used. The Italian population expected with a brain disorder was 12.4 million in 2004. The highest cost per case was for tumours and multiple sclerosis; the lowest was for anxiety disorders and migraine. Dementia (€8.6 billion), psychotic and affective disorders (€18.7 billion), migraine (€3.5 billion) and stroke (€3.4 billion) represented the highest total costs. Direct medical costs were predominant for psychiatric and neurosurgical disorders, direct non-medical costs for dementia, and indirect costs for neurological disorders. The total cost of brain disorders in Italy was €40.8 billion, 3% of the gross national product, and €706 per Italian citizen/year. This figure is however likely to be underestimated as it is based on retrospective methodology and samples of brain disorders, and does not include intangible costs.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)99-107
Number of pages9
JournalNeurological Sciences
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2008


  • Brain
  • Burden
  • Cost of illness
  • Epidemiology
  • Italy
  • Prevalence

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Clinical Neurology


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