There are two principal concerns that affect every person that is about to undergo major surgical operations in the lower torso. These are physical complications and financial costs, for which modern medicine constantly develops ways to reduce the necessary detriments for both factors. One of the standard alternatives that undoubtedly achieved such a main objective is called laparoscopy – a surgical procedure that enables physicians to observe the abdomen for signs of damage (e.g. injury, infection, or malignant tumor).
This procedure involves physicians making a small cut through the patient’s abdominal wall and then inserting a thin lighted camera tube called a laparoscope. Similar tubular instruments are also inserted in order to perform suture, excisions or biopsies. A retrospective cohort study, published in the British Medical Journal as of 2016, confirms the overall practical advantage of laparoscopy over traditional open surgery for colon cancer especially in terms of reducing hospital expenses.
Diagnostic laparoscopy is standard procedure for determining the complications in small vital organs in the abdominal and pelvic area. It is well suited for providing second opinion data that may support or contradict previous diagnostic findings derived from non-invasive methods like ultrasound and x-ray.
Average Cost Breakdown
There are numerous specific types of laparoscopic surgical procedures that can range anywhere from weight-loss bypass operation to treating various reproductive complications. But from the medical practitioner’s academic standpoint, diagnostic laparoscopy is a basic approach that precedes all these varieties of minimally invasive operations. Judging from its compound term, diagnostic laparoscopy is an examination that does not include executing any corrective measure on a suspected organ.
The national ballpark figure for diagnostic laparoscopic surgery cost is roughly anywhere from $5,000 to more than $15,000. According to Healthcare Bluebook, consumers can expect a fair price of $6,289. However, there is no guarantee that all health care providers nationwide may charge a fee along with this range. Using the aforementioned fair price, here is a basic analysis of how the overall cost for this type of procedure is being itemized:
- Facility service fee: $4,336
- Physician service fee: $803
- Anesthesia cost: $1,150
It is also important to understand that laparoscopy may be done in the physician’s office or private clinic. Apart from the relative convenience in terms of faster admission and treatment, many patients would opt for office laparoscopic operation due to a relatively lower cost. While getting operated outside the hospital seems cheaper, it is not without its own disadvantages. For one thing, an officer does not have sufficient machinery and tools compared to hospitals and health centers. Limited equipment poses its own challenges, several of which may entail a need for secondary operations.
About Medicare Insurance
Considering that the highest end of the laparoscopy price range may cost a fortune for some consumers, including this operation in the medical insurance plan is an advantage one can hardly forego. Like all types of outpatient services that screens or prevent serious chronic diseases, diagnostic laparoscopic surgery cost can be indemnified under the Medicare Plan B coverage.
Beneficiaries may pay a monthly fee of $109 (standard) or $134 (premium) for consumers who declare $85,000 (or less) annual salary in their individual tax return. These are the other monthly costs for the following annual salary ranges:
- $187.50 per month: $85,001 to $107,000 annual salary
- $267.90 per month: $107,001 to $160,000 annual salary
- $348.30 per month: $160,001 to $214,000 annual salary
- $428.60 per month: over $214,000 annual salary
In 2017, Medicare will only reimburse two levels of laparoscopy approaches to several varieties of surgical procedures. The national average for Level 1 laparoscopy is worth $4,199 while Level 2 laparoscopy is worth $6,970. Considering that diagnostic laparoscopy is defined by the absence of any corrective measure of the suspected organ, this procedure falls under the Level 1 category in the medical school academic echelon.
Diagnostic Laparoscopy Abroad
There is no question that diagnostic laparoscopic surgery cost in the United States is costly, despite the fact that it may be the cheapest compared to higher levels of laparoscopic procedures. Since not every health care provider in different locations across the country charge the same fee, consumers may sometimes experience financial difficulties despite the aid of medical insurance.
Cheaper out-of-pocket costs could prompt American consumers to take their healthcare overseas. Medical tourism is one of the many areas where developing countries could market their low-cost health care services for tourists coming from affluent countries. Anyone seeking cheaper than the average diagnostic laparoscopy price offered in the United States should take note of the following locations:
In Asia & Middle East
- BSG Global Hospitals (Bangalore, India): $900
- Mission Hospital (Bangkok, Thailand): $1,243
- Primus Super Specialty Hospital (New Delhi, India): $1,500
- Yeditepe University Hospital (Istanbul, Turkey): $1,556
- Zulekha Hospital (Dubai, United Arab Emirates): $2,000
- Burjeel Hospital (Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates): $3,268
In Europe & Africa
- Dobro Clinic (Kiev, Ukraine): $786
- Clinique Yasmine (Casablanca, Morocco): $937
- Clinique Pasteur (Tunis, Tunisia): $1,100
- Polyclinique L’Excellence (Mahdia, Tunisia): $1,525
- Luxmed (Warsaw, Poland): $1,761
- European Medical Center (Moscow, Russia): $3,519
Pain Management Medications
Judging from the average diagnostic laparoscopy price mentioned in the earlier part of the article, the overall cost does not include postoperative medications. While some physicians may provide medicine for patients at no cost, there is no guarantee that the same policy applies to all healthcare providers in the country.
Just in case the attending physician would not furnish pain management drugs after the operation, it is important for patients to be aware of certain drugs and their costs. There are a few well-known low-cost pain relievers that can be administered orally. Good RX offers cheaper rates for the following brands available at certain retail outlets:
Celecoxib: $205.79 per 30 capsules of 200mg as of June 2017
- Target CVS: $26.98 with free coupon
- Walgreens: $28.44 with free coupon
- Costco: $28.47 with free coupon
- Kroger Pharmacy: $28.72 with free coupon
- Health Warehouse: $34.50 via online purchase
Neurontin: $74.26 per 90 capsules of 300mg as of June 2017
- Kroger Pharmacy: $11.12 with free coupon
- Costco: $13.43 with free coupon
- Health Warehouse: $13.50 via online purchase
- Safeway: $13.85 with free coupon
- Target CVS: $16.29 with free coupon
Preparation for the Laparoscopic Surgery
- If you have fixed your mind of undergoing a minimally invasive laparoscopic procedure, it is good to prepare for it. Always inform your health care provider of any allergies to certain medicines and even anesthesia, or whether you are pregnant or not.
- Before the laparoscopic surgery, follow the orders, requests, and instructions of your health care provider as to when you should stop eating and drinking, or you risk your surgery of being canceled. However, if your health care provider allows you to take your medicines on the day of the laparoscopic surgery, please do so and drink only a sip of water.
- Do not bring your jewelry, leave them at home for safe-keeping purposes. Pieces of jewelry will need to be taken off before the laparoscopic surgery.
- You will also need to remove your eyeglasses, contact lenses and your dentures before the laparoscopic surgery begins. Rest assured that your personal belonging will be returned to you as soon as you gain consciousness after the surgery.
- You should also request for someone to drive you home after the laparoscopic surgery since you will not have the energy to drive yourself to your home alone.