America’s costliest medical procedures – transplants, surgeries, and more

America’s costliest medical procedures – transplants, surgeries, and more
February 09 06:23 2015 Print This Article

surgeriesIt’s known to all that medical expenses in America are much higher than in any other developed nation such as England, France or Canada. While the governments of other developed nations like Canada take all the burden on their shoulders to provide their citizens with a cheap (sometimes free) medical provision, American healthcare system runs on an absolutely commercial basis. The 41 million American citizens without any health insurance go asking for the medical procedures either breaking their fixed deposits or running into an unreasonable amount of debt, which later sends them hunting for top ten reviews and similar information on debt settlement services. Here’s a quick survey through the most expensive medical facilities provided by hospitals in the US-

  1. Tracheostomy

Tracheostomy is a surgical process which creates a tract through the neck ending at the trachea. This opening generally consists of a tube to provide an airy passage and to remove the secreted fluids from the lungs. Tracheostomy is an extension of tracheotomy but it lasts for a longer period. Tracheostomy is done for many reasons, such as to remove a large object obstructing the airway, to treat smoke, steam or toxic gases that cause blockage or swell in the airway, to cure paralysis of muscles hampering the act of swelling etc. General anesthesia is most commonly used provided there are no other possibilities of health hazards. Most of the patients who undergo this treatment are often severely ill and incur large expenses not only for the surgery but also for the lengthy stays at the hospital for exhaustive monitoring. This treatment costs almost $205,000.


  1. Kidney Transplant

Around ten percent of American adults suffer from kidney diseases and the statistic shows a growing curve. But it often asks for highly expensive treatments like kidney transplant which is not only a dread to the third world middle class households but has almost similar ability to threaten an American one. In America it costs approximately $262,900 for just the surgery excluding the cost of the donated implant. Along with the cost, the medical procedure is highly delicate and complicated. Therefore, only finding a suitable donor would not be able to soothe you unless and until you are assured of the right kind of infrastructure and a pair of extremely skilled hands. But a foreign organ needs to accustom with the patient’s body and for this reason a lot of ancillary expenses are made for the medicinal and other health purposes which raise the cost even more, practically unaffordable for a single middle class household.


  1. Open heart surgery

Heart hazards becoming more of a regular disease in America has made open heart surgery one of the most common operations taking place at every other operation theatre of the nation. But that doesn’t reduce the cost, estimating around $324,000 for a minor case. Open heart surgery is any form of surgery which involves cutting the chest open to operate on the muscles, arteries and valves in the heart. National Heart Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI) suggests coronary artery bypass drafting (CABG) as the most well-known heart surgery done to adults. This surgery involves attachment (grafting) of a healthy artery to a blocked one to bypass the blood through the healthy artery normalizing the blood circulation. Open heart surgery is often called traditional heart surgery and the term open heart surgery can also be quite ambiguous as heart surgeries these days can be performed only through small incisions without involving wide openings. But be the cut narrow or wide, the cost can definitely cause you a major heart attack!


  1. surgeryLiver transplantation

Apart from being the largest among the internal organs (weighing approximately 3 pounds in adults) liver also acts as the guardian of the digestive system. Liver transplantation is recommended whenever it fails to function or lacks adequate responsiveness. It can occur seemingly out of nowhere, the roots to the problem being at the complications from certain medications or other health hazards. The donors of your liver can both be living or deceased. A living donor is preferred whenever the case has reached its extremity but in most of the cases the liver of a deceased person (dead from accidents or head injuries) is able to meet the purpose. Blood type and body size of the donor are the most important factors, but donors are also tested to ensure that they don’t have AIDS, cancer or other infections before transplantation. But the scary part of the story is its expenditure which is about $577,100 in America.


  1. Bone marrow transplant

Bone marrow transplant is a process for the replacement of damaged bone marrow with healthy and lively bone marrow stem cells. This treatment can be approached in two different ways: (i) autologous bone marrow transplant, (ii) allogenic bone marrow transplant and (iii) umbilical cord blood transplant. The first one is done by extracting the stem cells from the body and then are frozen. After the treatment of the patient (in most of the cases, cancer) the stem cells are put back to their original position for regeneration of healthy blood cells. This method costs approximately $300,000. But the second method is much more expensive, costing around $676,800. This procedure needs a donor whom to transplant the healthy stem cells from. Along with with the cost, time also needs to be invested thoroughly in this process. Umbilical cord blood transplant is also a type of allogenic transplant. Stem cells are drawn from a newborn’s umbilical cord and then are frozen until they are needed for a transplant. This process is quite complicated.


  1. Intestine transplant

An intestinal transplant calls for an amount of $121,800 but the relief is that it’s kind of a last option to grab as far as the complications are concerned. This surgery is not recommended until and unless situation gets extremely worse generally arising from total parenteral nutrition (TPN). TPN existent for a long period can result in bone disorders, liver failure and can even damage veins which are responsible for nutrition working via the catheter. Don’t let the over-burdening cost and extreme health risks be the only reasons to alarm you, a highly skilled multidisciplinary transplant team is also required to make the transplant take place in the most orderly fashion.

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Mike Morgan
Mike Morgan

Mike Morgan is a health enthusiast and has written several health articles for various health magazines.

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