Breathing problems are a real issue for many people around the world. While there are many different causes of these problems, many of them can be addressed through nasal surgery: functional rhinoplasty. Most people think of cosmetic procedures when the term “nose job” comes up, but rhinoplasty is an extremely versatile procedure that can address both the function and aesthetics of the nose. If you are interested in pursuing rhinoplasty to improve your breathing, then you undoubtedly have at least a few questions. A couple of questions surgeons hear most, of course, have to do with the financial aspects of functional rhinoplasty: How much does it cost? And who foots the bill?
Functional Rhinoplasty for Deviated Septum and More
There are many nose-related breathing problems, and the rhinoplasty procedure can address some of these issues very effectively. Obstructive (blockage-related) breathing problems can be improved or completely fixed with rhinoplasty, including deviated septum (uneven/crooked nasal passages), enlarged turbinates (nasal tunnels deep within the nose), nasal polyps, and obstructive sleep apnea. Following surgery, patients can expect to breathe better and experience improved quality of life. However, rhinoplasty is an expensive procedure, whether it is done for cosmetic or functional reasons, which is why many people seek insurance coverage for functional rhinoplasty.
The good news is that in many cases, it is possible to get health insurance to pay for functional nasal surgery. The bad news is that coverage varies greatly depending on your health insurance provider and your individual plan, so you should not take it for a given that your procedure will be covered. Remember, insurance will only cover rhinoplasty for functional and reconstructive reasons—and not in every case.
Each insurance policy is different, and if you are seeking coverage for rhinoplasty related to breathing problems, you will need to read over your policy very carefully and make sure you can get the coverage you need. Make sure you get all the exams, notes, and other proof you’ll need for a successful claim if your insurance does cover the procedure. Understanding your policy is your responsibility, and you don’t want to get stuck with the bill when you weren’t expecting to!
Not Covered: Elective Cosmetic Improvements
Elective cosmetic improvements to the nose are not covered by the vast majority of insurance plans. This can pose a problem for patients who mainly seek functional rhinoplasty, but are also interested in making cosmetic changes at the same time, as insurance will often only cover the functional part of the procedure. Combining functional and cosmetic rhinoplasty is a smart move, but you may need to pay for some costs out of pocket.
If you are not eligible for insurance coverage, but are still interested in the benefits of rhinoplasty, you still have options for covering the cost of the procedure. Most plastic surgeons offer financing to patients, since the majority of procedures are not covered by insurance. These plans are usually quite fair, but it is important to understand the terms and what you’re getting yourself into before you decide to move forward. Be sure to ask prospective surgeons about financing options.
Ready to Learn More?
If you think you could benefit from functional rhinoplasty, then it is time to discuss your options with an experienced plastic surgeon. Rhinoplasty is a difficult and complex procedure, and only a board certified expert has the knowledge to help you achieve a successful outcome. Qualified surgeons should ideally be certified in both plastic surgery and otolaryngology (ear, nose, and throat) and have spent many years focusing on the skills required for consistently good rhinoplasty outcomes. Your consultations with prospective surgeons will be a valuable opportunity to ask questions and evaluate candidates before you make a decision.
If you would like to speak with a rhinoplasty specialist in the Boston area, come to Bentkover Facial Plastic Surgery in Worcester (508-363-6500) or Stoneham (617-247-0033), MA to schedule a consultation with double board certified facial plastic surgeon Dr. Stuart Bentkover. Dr. Bentkover has a passion for the rhinoplasty procedure and has spent much of his 20+ years in the field honing his rhinoplasty skills.