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Thread: Endoscopy cost?

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    7

    Endoscopy cost?

    Hello, this is my first post, but I have been reading these forums for a while now, they have provided some extremely useful information.

    I have suffered from frequent heartburn for over 10 years now and was diagnosed with GERD a few years ago. I went to the doctor today because my acid reflux pain changed from being heartburn to chest and back pain with some strange random pains just about everywhere.

    The doctor thinks I have an ulcer (my dad almost died when his ulcer ruptured an artery) and would like me to go for an endoscopy ASAP. The problem is that I don't have medical insurance right now as I have been unemployed for a couple of months. Can anyone tell me roughly how much an endoscopy will cost without insurance? I could wait until I have insurance again, but would really like to get this done soon.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Eastern Washington
    Posts
    443
    Okay I found my Outpatient bill for my endoscopy which was last Feb...

    my gastro doc charged $174.50 the hospital billed my insurance $2385.00... ackkkkk... that was the tubex and cetacaine spray and the Versed Injection... and the endoscopy itself.... not sure if the hosp bills more for 'insured patients' or not... would surely hope not... but not sure!!

    you can always talk to your doctor and explain that you don't have insurance and he may know some avenues to pursue...

    good luck!!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    7
    Yikes! That's steep, although I have noticed that insurance companies tend to be charged more than individuals I will check with the doctor, and I suppose I could always arrange a payment plan.

    Thanks for your response.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    CHICAGO-il
    Posts
    169
    i always pay cash
    down here in chicago i know 2 hospitals chagres 750, and 950 each Dr charges 250,350 with biopsy
    The Endoscopy dept call it EGD.
    Before endoscopy ask u GI to take h.pyloy biopsy to chk for bacteria. good luck
    Hani

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Atlanta, GA
    Posts
    513

    You can't go by an Insurance Bill...

    ...because Insurance Companies generally have a pre-arranged "reduced" rate. As crazy as it sounds, people who offer to pay cash are almost always charged more than the insurance companies. (As discussed on the Clark Howard show, a nationally syndicated Consumer Advocate.) It is crazy because collecting on insurance claims can be time consuming and costly, so why charge a premium to a cash on the spot customer? Just policy, and a dumb one.

    So the cost is whatever you can negotiate and get in writing beforehand. Don't forget the Anesthesiologist and the Laboratory that may examine a biopsy.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    Montreal
    Posts
    4,216
    Hi You expressed that the doctor thinks you have an ulcer. Well, 80-90 percent of ulcers are caused by h pylori, so an h pylori blood test would be a test he should order, if you can't swing the endoscopy at the moment.

    Also a cheaper alternative would be a barium swallow. It does check for ulcers , tumors, some esophagitis, etc. The only drawback is that it can't see Barrett's

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    7
    Thanks for all of your replies, they have been very helpful. I am going to try to avoid the endoscopy, I will post a new thread concerning this.

    Chris.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Location
    California
    Posts
    2,926
    Some places will give patients who pay cash a discount -- dealing with insurance companies costs money, and if they don't have to, they sometimes are willing to give the patient a break. Please note the "cash" aspect. Credit cards cost them money, and so cash is probably the best way to get a good price. Also, prices vary, so if your doctor has privileges in several places, shop around.

    I agree with Tricia, by the way. Your doctor should start out with a test for h pylori, not an endoscopy.

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