Breast surgery is an umbrella phrase that includes several different types of cosmetic surgery procedures. This list includes gynecomastia surgery, breast reductions, breast augmentation/implants, and breast lifts.
The majority of women who are considering cosmetic breast surgery are not satisfied with the fit of their undergarments and clothes prior to the procedure. For these unhappy women, shopping for clothing can be a discouraging and stressful experience. Finding flattering bathing suits, brassieres, and shirts often seems nigh unto impossible, and many women simply opt to avoid the shopping experience altogether.
Today, there are a plethora of cosmetic surgery options to improve the appearance of a woman’s breasts. Misshapen, asymmetric, and small breasts can be remedied with the placement of breast implants. A breast lift can benefit sagging breasts. A breast reduction can be used to remedy disproportionately heavy breasts. Regardless of what a patient’s concerns might be, there is an option to make their breasts more aesthetically pleasing. Of course, these options do have an associated price tag. Read on for more information about the cost associated with the different types of cosmetic breast surgery.
When it comes to plastic surgery, breast augmentation is the most popular cosmetic procedure amongst women, in particular new mothers that have recently finished breast feeding and have thrown away the breast pump. The good news is that national average cost of breast implant procedures has continued to go down each year since 2010. For example, according to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, the average surgeon’s fees for breast augmentation in 2011 were $3,694.00 for silicone breast implants. By the end of 2012, this number had dropped to $3,543.00. However, there are a number of contributing factors that will affect the overall cost of breast augmentation surgery.
Common factors that will affect the overall cost of a breast augmentation procedure include:
The cost of having a breast implant procedure performed varies widely throughout the United States, even within a specific geographic region. According to the 2012 edition of the Healthcare Blue Book, breast augmentation (including physician, anesthesia, and facility fees) can cost as little as $5,853.00 in Cleveland, Ohio and $5,883.00 in Dallas, Texas or as high as $6,803.00 in Los Angeles, California and $7,301.00 in New York City, New York. As a general rule of thumb, locations where the cost of living is higher will have a higher overall cost for breast augmentation.
On average, silicone implants cost approximately $1,000.00 more than saline implants. Another factor affecting the cost of breast augmentation surgery is whether a patient chooses silicone or saline implants. On average, silicone implants cost approximately $1,000.00 more than saline implants. The cost difference is not something that can be controlled by a plastic surgeon, as manufacturers establish the price of silicone implants.
In general the higher cost of silicone is attributed to:
Likewise, a surgeon’s fees will also vary. It is imperative to ensure that a patient uses a board certified plastic surgeon for their procedure. A doctor without appropriate training should not be used even if he or she offers lower fees.
During their consultation with a plastic surgery center or facility, a patient should speak with a financial consultant who will itemize each individual element that a quoted price includes. In the end, the total price a patient is quoted for their breast implant procedure should include their initial consultation, anesthesia costs, operating facility fees, the actual implants, the surgeon’s fees, and any post-operative care. In addition to the initial costs, there will also be miscellaneous fees that must be considered. A patient must ensure that they are prepared to pay for any required surgical garments, medical tests, prescriptions and so forth.
Below is a table showing the approximate average costs associated with breast implant surgery in the United States. Of course the numbers will vary depending on the specific location and doctor you choose but these numbers can act as a guide.
|Low End||High End|
|Actual Breast Implants:||$3,308.00||$3,694.00|
The Table below highlights the 10 cheapest cities in the United states for breast enhancement surgery along with some example prices.
|Las Vegas, NV||$4,000|
|San Diego, CA:||$4,500|
|San Francisco, CA:||$4,800|
|St. Louis, MO||$5,700|
The table below highlights the comparative costs of breast surgery abroad in a number of different countries. The price table takes into account the estimated cost of surgery only and does not account for travel expenses.
There are multiple lenders in providing monetary loans to individuals who wish to have breast augmentation and other types of plastic surgery, such as liposuction or a rhinoplasty, performed. Loans may be taken out to cover the whole, or a partial, amount of the cost of one’s procedure. Patients who are considering financing their surgery through lender should bear in mind the following issues:
In general, since most plastic surgeons require that breast augmentation be paid for a full two weeks in advance, the majority of patients find it simpler and more convenient to apply for financing.
Here is an education video on breast implants which discusses the following points:
One final component that must be considered in the overall cost of breast augmentation surgery is breast implant warranties. Although a relatively new concept in the world of plastic surgery, a breast implant warranty is designed to add value to one’s procedure by protecting a patient from additional costs, should they arise at a later date. A warranty may be free with the purchase of one’s implants, or they may impose an additional cost.
Many individuals will be surprised to learn that cosmetic breast procedures are not solely limited to women. Breast reduction surgery for men, frequently referred to as gynecomastia, is a procedure used to correct enlarged or over developed breasts in men. This condition is quite common in men of many ages. It can result from heredity conditions, hormonal conditions, certain diseases, or be due to the use of certain drugs.
For men, over developed breasts can impair their self-confidence and create emotional discomfort. Many men avoid physical intimacy or participating in certain physical activities in an effort to conceal their condition. Gynecomastia can manifest itself bilaterally (in both breasts) or unilaterally (in one breast).
The most common characteristics of gynecomastia include:
According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the average cost of gynecomastia surgery in 2012 was $3,194.00; however, this male breast reduction cost, refers only to the average physician/surgeon fee and does not include other related expenses, such as:
The inclusion of these other fees can bring the average to gynecomastia surgery to approximately $5,000.00 to $6,000.00.
The price of male breast reduction surgery varies significantly depending upon the composition and quantity of tissue removed, whether one or both breasts must be operated upon, and other factors that affect the complexity of the procedure. As a general rule of thumb, the longer or more complicated a procedure is, the more expensive it will be. Although the majority of gynecomastia surgeries are performed on an outpatient basis, if a patient’s particular procedure requires an overnight stay in the hospital, this could result in additional costs.
The plastic surgeon that a man chooses is also going to affect the cost of his gynecomastia procedure. Experienced and well-qualified surgeons command higher fees; however, this is an additional expense that is considered well worth it. As with other types of cosmetic surgery, gynecomastia is considered as much of an art as it is a science. An appropriately experienced and accredited surgeon can sculpt a man’s chest tissue in a manner that he will be happy with, increase the odds of the procedure’s success, and minimize the risk of complications.
The majority of women who elect to undergo breast reduction surgery have well-developed breasts. Most breast reduction procedures are performed solely for cosmetic reasons; however, it is not uncommon for this type of surgery to be conducted for health reasons if a woman’s breasts are causing her to suffer pain in her shoulders, neck, or back.
With breast reduction surgery, there are three primary fees involved:
According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the national average cost of a breast reduction procedure is $5,500.00. The average fee for a plastic surgeon conducting this procedure is between $3,400.00 and $4,000.00. With the anesthesia fee and the surgery facility’s fee added in, the average cost will end up being between $5,000.00 and $8,000.00.
Miscellaneous fees can also present themselves, including medical tests, medications, and compression garments used during the recovery period. A prospective patient should ensure that a plastic surgeon’s quote includes these additional costs and not just the surgeon’s own fee.
The total cost of a patient’s breast reduction surgery, or boob reduction cost, will be affected by the volume of breast tissue that is being removed. More complicated or longer procedures constitute higher fees. If a breast reduction is being combined with a breast lift, this will also increase the price of the procedure. The majority of breast reductions are conducted as outpatient procedures; however, if an overnight stay in the hospital is required, then this will further add to the overall cost.
The choice of one’s surgical facility in itself will also greatly affect the cost of a boob reduction procedure. Surgical prices tend to be higher in metropolitan cities when compared to less populated areas. Even within the same metropolitan area, different surgery centers will charge varying fees. For example, the average cost of a breast reduction procedure performed in Sacramento, California is $8,400.00. In Minneapolis, Minnesota, the average cost is approximately $7,900.00; however, in Birmingham, Alabama, the average cost of this procedure is a mere $3,050.00.[hr]
The term “breast lift” or “boob lift” is often used interchangeably with “breast reduction” however, the two procedures are distinctly different. During a breast reduction, breast tissue is removed from the outer, inner, and upper portions of the breast to reduce the breast’s actual size; however, with a breast lift, the skin only is removed in order to lift the breast. While a breast lift is classified only as a cosmetic procedure, a breast reduction can be classified as a reconstructive procedure.
The fact that breast lift surgery can be classed as either cosmetic or reconstructive means that patients can often have more flexibility as far as insurances for the procedure and financing options to cover the cost of their breast or boob lift.
In 2012, per statistics released by the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the national average plastic surgeon’s fee for a breast lift was $4,332.00; however, there are additional fees associated with this procedure. Overall pricing will be dependent upon a number of different factors, including a patient’s choice of surgeon, geographic location, and whether this outpatient procedure will be conducted in an office based surgery center or a hospital.
As with other cosmetic breast surgery procedures, there are three primary fees that affect the total breast lift cost, including:
In addition to the aforementioned fees, other common costs that patients incur include supportive brassieres, surgical garments, and prescription medications that are required during the recovery period. With these additional fees included, the total cost of a breast lift will, on average, be between $5,200.00 and $7,900.00 in the United States.
In most instances, the cost of a patient’s plastic surgery procedure will not be covered by their insurance provider, unless the procedure is being performed with the intent of improving a traumatic injury or genetic deformity. A patient should ensure that they check with their insurance provider to ascertain what degree of coverage will be offered. There exists a possibility that having plastic surgery done could affect a patient’s insurance premiums to see if having this procedure conducted will affect their future coverage.
There are advantages and disadvantages associated with paying for breast augmentation with cash. The primary advantage is that patient will not incur any debt if they opt to pay up front. If a patient does not wish to deal with paying off a loan or credit card debt, then this is an excellent option to choose. There are also a number of plastic surgeons who will offer discounts to patients who self-pay. The downside to paying with cash is that it can impose a considerable financial burden. If paying with cash will deplete one’s bank account, then alternate methods of payment should be considered.
Making Payments With Credit Cards
The majority of plastic surgeons will accept payments by credit card for all or part of the cost of a cosmetic procedure. Credit cards offer a simple payment method because they are so widely accepted; however, credit cards can be expensive, and most patients will have pre-defined limits on what they can spend. Furthermore, the interest rates for credit cards tend to be significantly higher than those for plastic surgery loans.
Although the majority of cosmetic procedures are not paid for by health insurance providers, there are some cases in which a breast reduction procedure will be. This is especially true in cases wherein overly developed breasts cause back and neck pain or other health issues. Before a procedure is scheduled, a prospective patient should consult their insurance policy to determine which expenses they must pay for out of pocket. Some insurance providers will require the plastic surgeon to provide documentation before a breast reduction procedure will be approved. Restrictions may be implemented regarding the type of surgical technique utilized in addition to other details about the procedure.
With so many different financing options available for cosmetic surgery, affordable options exist for women who wish to improve their overall appearance; however, it is imperative for a patient to do their research before choosing a plastic surgeon to perform their procedure, as cost should not be the only factor that affects one’s choice of surgeon.