Gravity, that wonderful element that holds our feet firmly on this planet, gets kudos for keeping us from becoming part of the spinning space debris, but it often wreaks havoc on a woman’s figure. Over the years, breast tissue tends to sag and decrease in volume. Mothers may notice a decrease in breast volume after quitting breastfeeding. Many women decide to get their breasts enlarged through a surgical procedure known as breast augmentation. Like all cosmetic surgeries, breast augmentation carries a price tag that varies depending on geographical locations and other factors.
Although the national average for the price of a breast augmentation in 2010 comes to about $3,744, the geographical location of the surgeon’s office can greatly affect the price. Although the cost of the actual implant material rarely fluctuates, the surgical facility and professional’s fees tend to vary. Affluent surgeons and well-known anesthesiologists in metropolitan areas often charge more for a breast augmentation than those in rural areas. Some women pay as much as $10,000 for their augmentation, but this is not the norm.
Saline vs. Silicone
Augmentations using implants filled with saline are generally cheaper than those filled with silicone are. Surgical fees for the silicone implants run an average of $450 more than the more common, saline implants. Discuss the pros and cons of both materials with your doctor before making a decision based on price alone.
In addition to city girls paying more than their country cousins do for this procedure, other factors cause the average price to vary. Ask your surgeon if he charges more to make the incision under the armpit, beneath the breast, or around the nipple. The time involved by the various placements and level of skill for each may affect the price he charges. Ask him if he charges more to place the implant beneath the muscle tissue, whether the cost increases with the size of the implant and whether he foresees any complications that may make your individual procedure cost more. Determine whether your surgeon offers a choice between your hospital’s operating room and an outpatient surgical facility. Surgical facilities can greatly affect the overall cost of your procedure.
Get it in Writing
Once you have consulted with your cosmetic surgeon regarding your augmentation, ask him to give you a written estimate of the entire cost with a breakdown of the charges. Use as much business sense as you would to purchase any other expensive item. Ask him to list all the charges involved in your procedure, including anesthesia, follow-up appointments, antibiotics and painkillers. Some cosmetic surgeons offer payment plans for surgical procedures, including breast augmentation. Ask if your doctor participates in this and fill out the necessary paperwork to find out if you qualify for a payment plan to help you pay for your surgery.
Insurance companies rarely pay for the cost of breast augmentations for aesthetic purposes. However, many companies cover some of the cost for breast implants used to reconstruct a breast after cancer surgery. Some companies also cover the cost of breast implants needed to repair breasts that suffered injuries or disfigurement in an accident. Check with your insurance company if you think you fall into one of these categories.