How Much Does an Ureteroscopy Cost?
An ureteroscopy refers to the medical procedure wherein the upper urinary tract is checked for irregularities. This process is also interchangeably known as a cystoscopy and is most commonly done to look for and/or remove kidney stones. The ureteroscopy involves the use of an ureteroscope entering the urethra, through the bladder and into one of the ureters. The ureteroscope is used to view the walls of the urinary tract to detect any abnormalities and break up some kidney stones if identified. The procedure is invasive and it needs the consent of the patient before it is done.
How much does it cost?
- The cost for ureteroscopy is different for every hospital or clinic you visit. There are some that charge high for such procedure but you can always have ways to save by using health cards or health insurances.
- Without any sort of insurance, the costs of a ureteroscopy can vary anywhere from $500 to as much as $2,500.
- For those who have a health insurance plan, be sure to check with your provider. You should only be responsible for your co-pay and deductible. Want a new policy? eHealthInsurance.com lets you browse through hundreds of policies for free.
- According to Medsolution.com, the cost of the entire ureteroscopy procedure when performed in the US, is around $2,700. This may as well cover hospital stay but only up to the minimum duration.
- Knighturology.com lists their fees right on their website. Here, the procedure can range anywhere from $600 to $1,100. However, if everything is paid in cash up front, this price can be brought down to $300 to $530.
- If this test is ordered by a doctor and is deemed medically necessary, it should be covered under your health insurance without a question. Depending on your plan, you will not need to pay much if any at all.
What is going to be included?
- The Ureteroscopy procedure may be done solely to check for abnormalities but most of the time, it involves removal of stones that are trapped in the lower part of the ureters, about one third of the entire length of a ureter. This is done in an operating room under a general anesthesia.
- During the procedure, a small ureteroscope is put through the bladder toward the kidney. Once inside, a small camera will be able to capture images and display the results for the doctor. The procedure is commonly done by a urologist.
- The rate for ureteroscopy may include fees for a minimum hospital stay. However, this procedure usually does not require patients to stay in the hospital since it is deemed an outpatient procedure. Unless there are other complications or other abnormalities that need to be addressed, a hospital stay will not be addressed.
- The procedure usually takes less than an hour.
- The cost will include doctor’s fees used during the procedure. Also included is the doctor’s diagnosis and review of the results afterwards.
- It can take up to two weeks to completely recover from an ureteroscopy.
What are the extra costs?
- Medicine that need to be taken after the procedure may not be included in the cost of procedure.
- Laboratory requirements and other tests may be needed before going under this sort of procedure.
- A follow up appointment may be necessary to check on the progress.
- If there are any stones found during the test that need to be addresses immediately, you may end up paying more for this service.
Factors that influence the price
- Hospital or clinic. There are a lot of hospitals and urology clinics which are licensed to do the procedure, but the price for ureteroscopy vary widely from different facilities and the geographical location.
- Extent of abnormality. Some doctor’s may vary their asking fees depending on the extent of the work they have made during the ureteroscopy. However, the procedure is commonly done with a packaged asking price.
Tips to know:
- Make sure that you follow any fasting or dieting suggestions within 24 hours of the test. This will make the results more clear to the doctor, which means you are getting more for your money.
- It is very important for every patient who is to undergo ureteroscopy to know how the procedure is done, the indication, contraindication, benefits and risks. Therefore, it is highly ideal that you consult with a doctor before the procedure is even considered.
How can I save money?
- Take advantage of your health insurance and get the most out of it. You should only be responsible for your co-pay and deductibles.
- If you do not have an insurance policy, be sure to check with the doctor’s office to see if any cash discounts are available. Even if you cannot pay for the procedure up front, many are able to put you on a finance plan. If you can pay cash up front, you can usually haggle up to a 50% discount.