How Much Does Chalazion Removal Cost?

Written by: Staff
Last Updated:  August 10, 2018

Chalazion removal is a simple medical procedure designed for draining chalazion cysts which develop on the eyelid.

A chalazion cyst, also known as a meibomian gland lipogranuloma, is a fluid-filled lump close to the eye which is caused by the obstruction of an oil gland responsible for releasing sebum, a fluid that helps to lubricate the eye.

Chalazion growth, in most cases, can be treated at home using warm compresses and a light massage; however, when a chalazion cyst continues to enlarge and begins to obstruct your vision, then surgery may become necessary in order to drain the cyst.  While they may be painful or annoying, they are rarely serious. Most of them go away on its own over time, even without any treatment.

How much does chalazion removal surgery cost?

Before surgery is considered, a hot compress treatment will be required to see if this resolves the problem.  If this doesn’t help, then antibiotic eyedrops or a steroid injection may be considered to see if symptoms improve.  If none of these methods don’t work, then the only way to get rid of it may be via a tiny excision.  This procedure, without health insurance, will often cost anywhere from $100 to $750.  The costs will vary depending on the doctor and the geographical location.

Chalazion removal surgery overview

The objective of chalazion removal is to drain the cyst, and the surgery itself is actually quite simple. The procedure is conducted by an ophthalmologist, most often at an eye care outpatient center. A chalazion cyst can be removed by means of an incision along the front of the eyelid or a small incision in the back of the eyelid. The lump is drained and then the pressure is quickly applied in order to absorb fluid. In most instances, only a local anesthesia is required to perform the surgery, although general anesthesia can be administered to a child to prevent movement that may cause injury to the eye. Stitches may or may not be required, depending on the location and size of the incision.  The whole procedure will take anywhere from 15 to 30 minutes.

After surgery, medicated eye drops should be used to prevent infection and control swelling.

The recovery from chalazion surgery is quick and most patients experience minor discomfort. A chalazion cyst can take months to heal completely with treatment and could often take years in order to heal without any major problems.  In most cases, recovery time will take up to one week.

What are the extra costs?

Depending on the arrangement of your billing with your provider, you may receive a separate bill from a pathologist if the tissue was sent off for a sample and/or the outpatient facility if it is billed separately from the doctor.

Additional costs may include the cost of a consultation with a specialist in dermatology or surgery.  The average consultation can cost $65 to $110 per visit without insurance.

Post-surgical medicated eye drops are necessary to help in the healing process.  The costs will depend if you have insurance or no, but these drops shouldn’t cost any more than $25.

In some cases, if a patient is experiencing discomfort, then OTC pain relievers may be recommended.

Tips to know:

A chalazion cyst is relatively simple to identify, and a physical exam of the eye is usually all that is required to confirm the diagnosis. In certain instances, a biopsy must be performed to rule other conditions out that could be causing eye inflammation, including skin cancer.  Common symptoms include eyelid tenderness, an increasing in tearing, eyelid swelling, sensitivity to light and/or a heavy-feeling eyelid.

There is a slight risk that chalazion will recur over time.

It is important to protect the eye and also keep the eyelids dry and clean for the initial week or so after surgery.

Chalazion removal is an outpatient treatment.

How can I save money?

For this condition, surgery should be the last resort.  Be sure to get at least two consultations to make sure that this is the right option.

Try the at-home treatments before proceeding with the surgery.  By applying a warm compress several times a day, this can help reduce the swelling.

As mentioned, if you do decide to go with the surgery, be sure to check with your health insurance provider to see if you’re covered.

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