Does Health Insurance Cover an Endoscopy?
Medical science has developed so much recently that it can be a bit hard to keep up with it. Doctors can now test for numerous conditions and diseases, which means we have a better chance of living longer.
All the new changes to health care have left many people both confused and hopeful. There are now different rules regarding what is and what is not covered, especially in light of all the different tests and procedures available. This might lead those who need it to ask if health insurance covers endoscopy.
What is Endoscopy?
With today’s technology, there are many ways for doctors to see what is inside the body of a patient. Devices such as an ultrasound, x-rays and CAT scans are nothing short of medical marvels.
Nevertheless, there are times when these tools cannot be used for various reasons. For example, if a physician needs to see an area in your body that is somehow blocked by something else, an endoscopy would allow access to that area. Also, it can be used to see organs that are typically difficult to view, like your pancreas.
Endoscopy is any procedure that uses an instrument called an endoscope that allows your physician to view areas inside your body without performing major surgery. Many ailments that used to require major surgery can now be performed by a type of endoscopy, where a small cut is made instead of a large opening.
It is a preferred method of examination because there is no bleeding and little, if any, recovery period. The doctor can simply make a small incision in your skin and insert the endoscope. The instrument can also go through just about any opening in your body, such as your nose, mouth, or anus.
The endoscope is a piece of medical equipment that looks like an extended, skinny tube with a light on one end. The other end is attached to a computer so that the images it picks up can be seen on a monitor.
One of the most effective uses for an endoscopy is the ability to remove a section of tissue from your body so it can be studied. This helps your doctor to determine whether further treatment is required and, if so, what kind of action is needed.
If your physician recommends an endoscopy, you may be told not to eat anything for several hours prior to the procedure. Although it is not major surgery, you probably will be briefly sedated and you might be given some pain medication or a laxative to help empty your colon. The whole process should take less than an hour.
Are There Different Types of Endoscopy?
Most people have heard of a colonoscopy, which is used to detect cancer of the colon. There is a type of endoscopy for just about every area of the body, including rhinoscopy to look inside your nose and arthroscopy for the joints.
Surprisingly, there is also a kind of endoscope that comes in pill form. This type of wireless technology helps to detect problems in the digestive tract or bowels. The pill acts as a small camera that takes photos that are used by a surgeon to ascertain a diagnosis. After the pill has passed through the body, it exits as waste.
Procedures such as the removal of the appendix or gall bladder, and even hysterectomies, are regularly done using this technique today, which is called a laproscopy. Endoscopy is also used frequently for ailments such as internal bleeding, ulcers, urinary tract problems, and recurring diarrhea.
When Does Health Insurance Cover Endoscopy?
An endoscopy can cost anywhere between $1,000 and $10,000, depending on factors such as the type of endoscopy, your location, the facility you go to for the procedure, and if an anesthetic is used. Another issue that can affect costs is whether or not a biopsy, which is the removal of a tissue sample for further study, was done as part of the process.
Most major health insurance companies will cover the cost of an endoscopy. Since they are a key to detecting numerous ailments, endoscopies are viewed as a medical necessity. For those who do not have insurance, there are clinics and other health centers that offer care for a reduced cost.
Of course, it is always best to contact your insurance company representative to get a definitive answer. Even if you cannot obtain an exact price, they should at least be able to provide an estimate. You should also consult your doctor about expected costs, including any possible fees for things like outpatient services.
The vast majority of endoscopies are free of any complications. This is far less than statistics regarding major surgeries. Some of the possible adverse affects are excessive bleeding, damage to an organ such as a tear, and infections. However, endoscopies are considered to be one of the best options for diagnosing and fixing a wide assortment of complex issues.