If you’re researching breast augmentation surgery, one of your biggest questions is probably, “How much does breast augmentation cost?” According to data from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the average cost of breast augmentation surgery in the U.S. was $3,718 in 2017. * However, many factors make the price of breast augmentation surgery vary widely.
Overall influences that contribute to the costs of breast augmentation surgery include:
- The material you choose for your breast implants (silicone vs. saline)
- Your surgeon’s fees
- The location your breast implant will be placed – above or below your chest wall muscle
- Location of your incisions
- The city where you get your surgery done
- Facility fees – Hospital or Surgery Center fees
- Anesthesia fees
- Prescription medications, such as painkillers
- Post-surgical support garments
- Medical tests
- Any issues associated with your case
- Follow-up visits with your doctor
- Are you going to have any changes in your breast anatomy to correct for asymmetry
When estimating your costs of breast augmentation surgery, make sure to account for all these different fees. Since there generally aren’t fixed prices associated with cosmetic surgery, it is important to explore multiple options by meeting with several breast augmentation specialists and getting estimates – not just for their surgical fees, but also any additional expenses related to your surgery. It’s a good idea to ask each doctor you consult with to provide an itemized list of all the costs involved in your estimate, so there are no surprises when it comes to your final bill.
Let’s take a more in-depth look at some of the major factors that will add up to affect the cost of your breast augmentation surgery.
- Silicone vs. Saline Implants- The material of your breast implants could impact the final price of your surgery. Saline implants are generally less expensive than silicone, as they are full of a saltwater solution akin to the fluid that makes up most of the human body. Silicone implants tend to cost more, and some women prefer them because the gel that fills them may provide a softer “feel” if one develops a capsular contracture following breast augmentation.
- Surgeon’s Fees- You’ll find different surgeons may also charge varying rates based on their experience level and how “in-demand” their services are. When you meet with potential doctors who might perform your breast surgery, ask about their board certification and specific cosmetic surgery training, including any residencies or fellowships. It’s in your best interest to find a surgeon who is qualified to perform your breast augmentation – not only to ensure your safety throughout the process, but also to provide you with the best aesthetic outcome.
- Location, Location, Location- The city where you have your surgery can also play a role in your final price tag, because larger cities not only have a higher overall cost of living, but also a greater level of competition among skilled surgeons. Unsurprisingly, densely populated cities such as Manhattan, Miami, Dallas and Beverly Hills tend to be at the higher end of the pricing spectrum, whereas you can usually expect to pay less in medium-sized cities with a smaller population. Healthcare Bluebook ** is a helpful tool you can use to get an idea of the cost of breast augmentation near you. However, while traveling to a distant site may be less expensive, one should factor into the time and cost of travel for the very important follow-up visits.
Will Health Insurance Cover Your Breast Implants?
You may believe breast augmentation is essential for your mental and physical well-being; however, your insurance company may not necessarily agree. Because most insurance companies consider cosmetic surgery to be elective, or not medically required, most women can expect to pay for it out of pocket. One exception might be to cover breast implants in cases that involve breast reconstruction. However, ask your surgeon about financing options that will allow you to pay for your breast augmentation gradually, in installments.
Your Health Comes First
Cost is certainly a deciding factor when it comes to where and with whom you have your breast augmentation surgery – but it isn’t the only factor. Ultimately, getting cosmetic surgery is an investment in yourself. When it comes to surgically altering any aspect of your appearance, choosing a surgeon based solely on price may come back to haunt you someday.
If you find a breast augmentation specialist who promises to provide cut-rate pricing, it may be because they are less qualified to provide you with good results. Evaluate each potential surgeon’s reviews, credentials and before-and-after photos. Go where you feel the most confident in your safety and where you are most likely to get the outcome you desire.
San Francisco’s Leading Breast Augmentation Specialist
For more than 20 years, Dr. Michael Kulick has been helping women get beautiful, natural-looking and more feminine breasts with implants. He has perfected his surgical techniques over thousands of hours of practice, and has attained board certification from the renowned American Board of Plastic Surgery. He is proud to be one of the most acclaimed cosmetic surgeons in the San Francisco area. Contact Dr. Kulick’s office today to schedule your consultation.
* Source: American Society of Plastic Surgeons
** Source: Healthcare Bluebook