How Much Does a Brain MRI Cost?
A brain MRI is technology that uses magnetic signals in order to create images of what is going on inside a patient’s brain. Aside from studying the brain, an MRI is also used to study the muscles, bones, ligaments, tissues, and nerves inside the body.
How much does it cost?
- On average, a brain MRI is going to cost anywhere from $1,500 to as much as $6,500. The cost of brain MRI will depend on the hospital, the geographical location, if insurance is involved and inclusions with the bill.
- According to Comparemricost.com, the cost of an MRI ranges from $400 to $3,500 depending on the procedure and the location where the test is conducted. The same exact MRI test can vary by hundreds of dollars depending on the hospital or facility providing the imaging technology.
- Based on the National Brain MRI Procedure Pricing Summary posted on Newchoicehealth.com, the national average cost of brain MRI ranges from $1,650 (Andrews, Texas) to $7,300 (Ketchikan, Arkansas) depending on the location. The national average price is around $2,550.
- If you have health insurance, this process will more than likely be covered as long as it is ordered by a doctor. To find a new policy or swap your current one, eHealthInsurance.com allows you to browse and sign up with hundreds of policies at no cost.
What is going to be included?
- The cost of an MRI is broken down into the following areas: (1) Professional fees which are associated with the radiologist doing the interpretation of the result and (2) Technical Fees which covers the cost of the procedure and the use of the machine and hospital facilities.
- The Brain MRI includes the use of a powerful magnetic field, radio waves, and computer. These three can come up with three dimensional images of nerves and tissues in the brain as well as other parts of the body. The images produced are then examined and printed.
- During the procedure, the patient will have to lie flat on a table. This table will then be pushed through a tunnel that is surrounded by a magnet. These radio waves, as stated above, will then broadcast a 3D image.
- The procedure should last no more than 60 minutes.
- A brain MRI can show many things that could be health issues potentially cause problems. When the tissues are shown, an MRI of the brain can detect things like brain tumors of any size, signs of a stroke, multiple sclerosis, the cause of seizures, and the progression of dementia. If the skull is studied, the MRI can show fractures, sinus problems,
What are the extra costs?
- Take note that some hospitals charge extra fee for cancellation of brain MRI appointment. The cancellation fee would range from $100 to $750 depending on the hospital. This cancellation fee is usually only charged if the MRI is cancelled 24 to 48 hours before it is to be done.
- For patients that can be claustrophobic, a doctor may prescribe a mild sedative. There are also new machines called open MRI which can perform an MRI without being placed in the tube. In this MRI, the components that capture the figures are simply rotated around the patient’s body.
- A contrast solution could be necessary to enhance the scan. Contrast solutions cost $100 to $250.
Tips to know:
- Check your Medicare or insurance policy for possible inclusion of brain MRI. You may be able to be reimbursed once the test has been completed.
- Take advantage of financial assistance or charity care. Check the requirements needed in order to qualify for this.
- Before heading to an MRI, prepare yourself by wearing loose and comfortable clothing. It is also best to keep all loose jewelry at home since you will have to take it off for the test. You will also have to remove things such as belts or anything else metal that could interfere with the magnets.
How can I save money?
- The cost of having brain MRI performed can be pretty expensive considering that the machine costs millions of dollars. As such, make sure that you avoid cancelling appointments for a brain MRI because you might be required to pay a cancellation fee.
- Check out the cost of brain MRI in your state. If it is expensive, try to find other areas that offer more affordable rates for brain MRI so that you can save money.
- Those that do not have health insurance should inquire about cash discounts. Many clinics are more than happy to provide discounts to those who pay up front.
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