How Much Does a Nebulizer Machine Cost?


Written by:  Howmuchisit.org Staff
Last Updated:  August 14, 2018

A nebulizer machine is a device that administers medication through the air in the form of a mist.  These machines are commonly used to treat asthma, cystic fibrosis, and other respiratory diseases and is often designed to help those who have a hard time breathing.  Using a tube, such as a mouthpiece or a face mask, the liquid medicine will be inhaled directly into the lungs.

The cost of a nebulizer machine will depend on the brand, the features and where it’s purchased.

Nebulizer Philips Respironics InnoSpire by supriyatinraisa, on Flickr
Nebulizer Philips Respironics InnoSpire” (Public Domain) by supriyatinraisa

How much a nebulizer machine cost?

On average, a nebulizer machine can cost anywhere from $20 to $120.  The popular PARI reusable nebulizer, for instance, retails for about $20.

PersonalHealthInsurance.com says the average nebulizer is usually about $50 for the smaller models, but the fancier versions can cost more than $100.

WebMD says most home nebulizers will cost $50 and up, plus the cost of accessories.  They also note portable nebulizers will cost a bit more.




Nebulizer machine overview

There a few different types of nebulizers, but the most widely used version will be known as an atomizer.  This type of nebulizer will use a compressor to operate.  Another common type, known as the ultrasonic nebulizer, will use sound waves to transfer the medication.  These machines will come in virtually all shapes and sizes and some portable units can be even as small as a wallet so you’re able to carry it around with you for the day.  Some are even shaped like an animal, for instance, to accommodate children who use the machine.

Nebulizers can either be charged electrically or via a battery.  Household models, which usually sit on a tabletop, will need to be plugged into an electrical outlet, while a portable version will run on either disposable or rechargeable batteries.

When the machine is on, you will have to dispense medication into the machine.  Once the medicine has been dispensed, you will simply sit straight up in a chair, place the mask over your face and breathe it in slowly as the medication can enter the system.  Some machines may also have a tube that you bite down on.  Each treatment should take no longer than 10 minutes.  Once the session is done, the machine is cleaned and stored.

What are the extra costs?

An additional mouthpiece and/or mask may be necessary for backup purposes; in fact, your doctor will recommend it in case your first set fails.  A mouthpiece and mask can start at $2 and go up from there. Customized accessories, such as masks shaped like animals, can cost more than a basic mouthpiece.

To use a nebulizer, you will need an air compressor, nebulizer cup, mask, medication and compressor tubing.  If your machine is missing any of these accessories/components, then you will need to factor these into your budget.

If battery operated, replacing the battery in the future needs to be considered.

A carrying case and medication need to be factored into the budget as well.

The compressor filter will need to be changed often.  Refer to the company’s directions to see how often it needs to be replaced.  The average nebulizer filter replacement cost is about $4 to $8.  The same can be said about the tubing.

Tips to know:

Make sure that the machine is placed on a flat surface where it can’t fall over.

Before using this machine, always make sure you wash your hands thoroughly.

Before dispensing medication, make sure that the instructions are read to ensure that it’s being used properly.

Medication can commonly stick to the sides of the mask.  If this happens, be sure to shake the mask to free any droplets on the mask.

After each treatment, make sure you wash out the mask with lukewarm water.

How can I save money?

If insured, talk with the health insurance company to see if the machine can be covered under the policy.  Medicare Part B, for instance, will cover nebulizers and some medicine being used. When working with health insurance companies, they will ask you to work with a particular medical equipment supplier.  Before you even consider purchasing or renting one, talk with your insurance company.

These machines can be purchased used; however, before using, make sure the equipment is inspected by a doctor to ensure that it is working properly.

If purchasing online or in a store, look for coupons or sales to see if you can take advantage of any deals.


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Average Reported Cost: $176

33 %
67 %
Less Expensive $1 $1.5K $3K $5K $6.5K More Expensive $8k

How much did you spend?

Was it worth it?  

  1. spark (Henrico,  Virginia) paid $138 and said:

    I paid through Pediatric Connection, which charged $230 to my insurance. After $92 discount, it was $138, which is still high as I see prices < $100 online.

    Was it worth it? No

  2. Yaz (Gilbert,  Arizona) paid $200 and said:

    Like the other poster, I was charged close to $200 for my machine. After being billed, I decided to do some research and found some machines for a much cheaper price.

    Was it worth it? No

  3. Jacob (Atlanta,  Georgia) paid $190 and said:

    BCBS paid 49$ and I’m stuck with the remaining amount. Buy your own. Do not trust the Insurance companies.

    Was it worth it? Yes

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