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cost of lumbar MRI with contrast ??

gwennie17gwennie17 Posts: 3,008
edited 06/11/2012 - 8:43 AM in Back Surgery and Neck Surgery
Does anyone know how much they were billed for the cost of a lumbar MRI with contrast (gadolinium)? I had not met my co-pay for the year when I recently had one, and was really stunned to see what I was charged. I must admit I haven't really paid attention in the past.

If anyone knows how much this procedure costs in your area, I would love to know.

Thanks.

Gwennie
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Comments

  • The last one I had done, with contrast, was in November of 09' and was billed out at $897. They were paid $363 by a HMO insurance plan. Still to high in my book. They also tried to bill $117 to read the films which was not paid. That was a seperate line charge.

    David
  • the gestament bill i jist got was 3200 for mri and 823 for the contrast :jawdrop:
  • j.howiejj.howie Brentwood, Ca., USAPosts: 1,793
    I asked a few years ago about the difference between a MRI w/ contrast and a stand up MRI w/contrast for work comp insurance because I thought I might have to pay the radiologist co. the difference. the cost was $800 vs. 1,200 for insurance co. at that time. 2005 I think?
    Jim
    Click my name to see my Medical history
    You get what you get, not what you deserve......I stole that from Susan (rip)
    Today is yours to embrace........ for tomorrow, who knows what might be starring you in the face!
  • About 2 years ago I paid $300 cash. (no insurance)
    West L.A. near UCLA.
    -----------------------------
    On the sunny and mild Central Coast of California

    L4-L5 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy June, 2007
    L5-S1 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy May, 2008
  • Gwennie,

    I had MRI w/ cont on 8/18/09 my insurance was billed $2350, they paid $951. Leaving me $237 oop. My oop wasn't met at the time either. My insurance year is June 1st - May 31st. I am hoping new PM doc will do all necessary testing ASAP since I have met my out of pocket expenses for the year.

    Traci
  • I am surprised at the range of cost for this procedure. Why does it cost 3 times as much in one area compared to another? I am in a pretty expensive area to live in so I would think the amount paid by insurance would be up there. Probably also has to do with the volume.

    David
  • Clearly I need to make a couple phone calls tomorrow. The place where I had mine done was $5400. Once they took out the amount discounted for the insurance company, I was left with something around $2400. which still strikes me as high.
  • Geeeeeez Gwennie,

    That seems outrageously high. I would be calling as well.

    Traci
  • j.howiejj.howie Brentwood, Ca., USAPosts: 1,793
    Highway robbery!......INSANE!!!
    Jim
    Click my name to see my Medical history
    You get what you get, not what you deserve......I stole that from Susan (rip)
    Today is yours to embrace........ for tomorrow, who knows what might be starring you in the face!
  • Check out some Sports Medicine places if there are any in your area. I know several people who have used them quite frequently to get lumbar MRI's with and without contrast for as low as $150.

    "C"
  • Another time, the MRI machine came to me!
    It was in a big ole truck and trailer. Mobile scanner unit from Santa Barbara. I didn't have contrast that time and it was slightly less than than $300 (cash price).
    -----------------------------
    On the sunny and mild Central Coast of California

    L4-L5 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy June, 2007
    L5-S1 endoscopic transforaminal microdiscectomy May, 2008
  • I was recently quoted $1200 without contrast, $1500 with, and those numbers include the radiologist fee for reading the films. $5400 seems way out of line. did you have more than one area scanned? Thoracic and lumbar?
    Surviving chronic pain one day at a time, praying for a reprieve because living another 40 years like this doesn't sound too fun!
  • Gwennie, I would check and see if the insurance allows them to charge YOU a certain amount after the insurance pays. Sometimes they are contracted to only charge YOU a certain amount. Absolutley ridiculous--no way it should be that much!
  • I went back through last year's insurance claims and see that when I had both lumbar and cervical areas done, it was billed out at $7400. I just wasn't paying attention because I had met the deductible and then had 100% coverage...so I wasn't paying attention to the bills.

    That really is outrageous.
  • gwennie17 said:
    I went back through last year's insurance claims and see that when I had both lumbar and cervical areas done, it was billed out at $7400. I just wasn't paying attention because I had met the deductible and then had 100% coverage...so I wasn't paying attention to the bills.

    That really is outrageous.
    You must of gone to one of those designer MRI places. What all did you get for your upcharge. Did they come pick you up in one of their limo's? Probably got a 5 star lunch with it. LOL

    We wonder why our health care system is such a mess with the way charges are put together. If you went to a Dr. owned place and went as a out of network visit they could probably charge what they wanted, which it looks liked they did. Pure greed in my opinion.

    David
  • I have to double check but I had 2 MRI's that were both with & without contrast (so dual set of images).

    I think the last one they attempted to bill out at about $2500-2800. I have to see what my insurance company agreed to pay, last I checked it was still "in progress" which means they are trying to agree on a price.
  • Ouch! that seems high.

    Granted it was 2-areas but even if you doubled mine it would be in the $5400 range. And, my lumbar was with AND without contrast. So if you are just doing with contrast, my guess is it would be slightly lower.
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