The question most cosmetic surgeons will always get is how much do breast implants cost?
While this seems like a straight forward question, there is no “one size fits all” answer.
There are many considerations to be taken before making a conclusive determination on the cost of breast implants.
The factors that influence the cost of the implants include:
Just like buying food at a restaurant or purchasing a home, the location dictates the price. The more affluent the area, the more the charges you are likely to pay for breast implants. This is because the surgeon is likely to be paying higher fees for the office space and has a higher cost of operation than a surgeon in a cheaper location.
Secondly, if you live in a remote area you are likely to pay higher for breast implants. This is because they are harder to obtain and there will be less numbers of surgeons in that area.
Closely tied to the location are the facility charges. It is generally unwise to use a surgeon who will operate on you in some room at the back of his office.
It is preferable to use a surgeon who operates from a hospital operating theatre. This is because a hospital will be fully equipped and ready to handle any emergencies. Of course, the better equipped and prepared the facility is, the more you can expect to be charged.
Surgeon’s Fees for Breast Augmentation
Most plastic surgeons charge a fee of between $2,000 and $6,000 for their services for a standard breast augmentation procedure. This fee is dependent on the surgeon’s level of expertise, sense of self worth, level of demand for his/her services, level of difficulty of the procedure, and how much time the surgery will take.
Some patient factors may also determine the patient’s fees such as age and medical condition.
When looking at surgeon’s fees, you should consider the fact that qualified plastic surgeons are highly trained professionals who spend a longer period in study and residency compared to other medical professionals. The fees for their courses are higher and so are the costs of running a plastic surgery office. This means a genuine plastic surgeon will charge higher fees than quacks.
Real plastic surgeons in the United States will be certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgeons (ABPS).
There will be other medical professionals who will move from their areas of specialization to plastic surgery in search of the higher fees. Such professionals will include gynecologists, family practice MDs, or ER medicine practitioners and even though these are also qualified doctors, they are not qualified plastic surgeons. As such, they will not be members of ABPS. Do not confuse this with the certification they usually seek from the American Board of Medical Specialties Boards (ABMS).
Another way to make sure you are being attended to by a qualified and trusted surgeon is by checking if s/he has plastic surgery privileges at local hospitals. If not, then it may be an indicator that the surgeon is not trusted and hospitals fear lawsuits that may result from using his/her services.
Type of Procedure/Incision
The type of incisions made will have an impact on your overall costs for the breast implants.
There are 5 main incision types that are commonly used and these are inframammary, periareolar, transaxillary, transumbilical, and transabdominal.
The various types of pocket placements may also determine how much the surgeon charges you. These include subglandular, subfascial, subpectoral, and submuscular.
The cost of buying the implants themselves will influence the overall costs of the procedure. Silicone implants cost between $1,800 and $2,500 though this may go up to slightly over $3,000.
Saline implants will cost anywhere between $1,200 and $1,600. The cost of implants varies due to size and manufacturer though there is usually not much of a difference.
There are various options for your anesthesia and this will have a direct impact on the fee you will be charged. The cheapest option is for your surgeon to be the one to administer the anesthesia. This is a risky option and should be avoided.
The second option is to use a Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA). This is a better option than using the surgeon but it may get expensive since most jurisdictions require that the CRNA must be supervised by a doctor.
The best option for your safety and comfort would be to use an anesthesiologist. This is a qualified MD who specializes in anesthetics.
Most surgeons will have you go for some lab tests before the procedure is done. These may include a basic blood work set and pregnancy test.
Needless to say, not many plastic surgeons will be willing to work on a pregnant woman. These tests will present an additional cost before the implants are inserted.
Though some insurance companies will cover it, you may have to pay additional fees for a mammogram before the procedure. This is especially so if you haven’t had a mammogram within the last 12 months.
You may be required to buy some special items of clothing such as surgical bras before the procedure. These will increase the costs of your breast implant.
The procedure for a breast implant is surgery and should be taken as seriously as all other surgical procedures.
You may have to set aside some extra money just in case something goes wrong and you require some additional procedures to correct complications that may arise.
Total Costs of Brest Implants
With all the above factors taken into consideration, the total cost of breast implants generally are somewhere in the range of $5,000 and $15,000.
However, it is best for your safety and peace of mind to avoid the lowest-charging surgeons and the ones charging very high fees. Typical charges are in the range of $6,500 to $9,000.
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