Medical procedures and surgeries in the US can be quite costly, especially if paying out of pocket. There are a number of different factors that go into determining the most affordable way to go about having the necessary procedure done. Deviated Septum surgeries are a common outpatient procedure that can cost anywhere between $3,000 - $12,ooo not including pre-procedural or post-procedural care. A bit of research and shopping around can help you determine who has the most affordable rate available to you.
A deviated septum is when the bone dividing the cartilage of the center of the nose is twisted and blocks the normal airflow in the nose. Many people don't have completely straight septums but not all conditions require serious medical attention. Combined with other symptoms such as allergies, congestion, or turbinate hypertrophy, breathing can be difficult and cause sleep apnea as well as other conditions. A deviated septum can be caused by a childbirth injury as the baby passes through the birth canal. Another theory as to the cause of a deviated septum is that any trauma that could have occurred to the nose during childhood or adolescence can cause the septum to twist. As the person gets older the nose continues to grow in that twisted manner.
If after trying other medical means necessary to deal with symptoms and nothing seems to improve breathing, a surgical procedure called a "septoplasty" may be required. The outpatient procedure is done most commonly with general anesthesia and usually takes from 30 minutes to an hour and a half total. During the procedure, the septum is straightened and repositioned in the middle of the nose. The surgeon does this by making an incision to separate the mucosa (the soft layer of tissue lining the nasal passages) from the cartilage and bone. The surgeon then trims or straightens the bent cartilage and replaces the mucosa over the cartilage and bone. After the surgery, you may have a nasal splint or pack placed in your nostrils to keep the septum in place during the healing process. Breathing can begin to improve in as little as a week after the procedure and will continue to improve over the next 12 months.
The average cost of deviated septum surgery in the US according to Costaide is $8, 131. The lower-end being $5,152 and the higher-end $12,633. However, costs can vary from state to state and hospital to hospital. The fee to undergo a septoplasty mainly depends on a few factors:
- 1The state in which you undergo the procedure in
- 2The hospital or clinic you choose to use
- 3If your insurance covers some\all of it or not
- 4The complexity of the procedure
Pricinghealthcare.com is a great tool to find information from select facilities that include upfront costs for this procedure. You will notice when going through the lists that the prices vary from state to state and some times the price differences are pretty big. For example, the upfront cost of a septoplasty procedure at the Synergy Spine and Surgery Center in Seneca, SC is $6,200 while the same procedure at The Surgery Center of Oklahoma is $3,550. Keep in mind that additional costs such as anesthesia fees, may not be included in the price that is shown.
Most insurance companies will cover the cost of a septoplasty if they deem it absolutely medically necessary and as long as the surgeon and anesthesiologist are in-network with your insurance provider. If a less costly treatment exists that will have the same results then the insurance company may choose not to cover the surgery. For example, other treatments of obstructed nasal passages are medication to reduce the swelling of nasal passages or nasal dilators. To get a claim approved for a septoplasty cost from an insurance company, the insurance holder will need to get a diagnostic test report from their doctor specifying the patient's problem and the need for surgery. They will also need an authorization letter or a pre-determined letter from the insurance company, stating which portion of the incurred costs of the surgery can be claimed. If the patient is undergoing cosmetic surgery, then only absolutely medically necessary aspects of it can be claimed. The price of the surgery with insurance coverage depends upon the insurance plan you are under and what your copays are. The same as above goes for Medicare and Medicaid Services. As long as the procedure is absolutely necessary then most likely it will be covered by Medicare and Medicaid.
In some cases, the patient may have more complexities which may drastically affect the cost of the procedure. For example if the patient has to undergo more procedures, needs a more experienced surgeon, and needs to prolong his stay in the hospital. If other procedures are combined with the septoplasty such as a rhinoplasty or sinus surgery, then the cost of that procedure would be added to the deviated septum surgery cost.
There are a few things to consider when looking for the cheapest prices for a septoplasty. First of all, working with your insurance company and making sure you have the best plan possible to help you save money. Also, doing proper research and comparing prices from different providers will help you to be more informed in your decision. Some providers may give discounts for cash payments. Lastly, you may want to consider looking into independent surgery centers which do tend to have lower costs than regular hospitals and clinics. Just make sure they are credible and trustworthy places before you decide to use them.
Overall, there are available options to you when researching this important decision and finding the most affordable option for you. Working with your insurance company to figure out the best plan for you, taking some time to check around different clinics statewide and what their pricing is, and considering alternative options such as a surgery center, can all be helpful and constructive ways find the cheapest option for you!