02 Apr Dental and Medical Coverage for Bone Grafts
Some people need to undergo bone grafting, a regenerative surgery that involves a periodontist, an oral surgeon, an orthopedic surgeon, and an anesthesiologist (“Bone Graft: Materials, Cost and Procedure” 2018; “Dental Bone Graft Cost”). This procedure addresses issues related to the gradual deterioration of “the supporting ‘bridge’ bone” around an area where a tooth is missing due to a variety of reasons, such as extraction (“Dental Bone Graft Cost”; Tekavec 2002). As this supporting “bridge” bone deteriorates, people may experience “impaired chewing and speech, soft-tissue pain, and muscle dysfunction” (Tekavec 2002). Bone grafts can help address “trauma or surgery defects, bone loss due to periodontal disease, general alveolar deterioration, and extraction sites” because these grafts “provide a matrix for bone growth in defective areas, as well as filling in extraction sites to preserve the height and width of the alveolar ridge” (Tekavec 2002). People may also need bone grafts before receiving implants, if their “jawbone is too thin, soft, or insufficient to be a foundation for the implant” (Murphy 2019). Bone grafts can be expensive for some people, but they can be covered by dental or medical insurance.
Some people may be unable to afford bone grafts. People have to pay a lot for bone grafts “depending on the [grafts’] source and the amount of bone needed” (Murphy 2019). For instance, people may have to pay around $200 to $1,200 “for a bone graft from another human, a cadaver, a cow, or from synthetic bone…” (Murphy 2019). People may have to pay around $2,000 to $3,000 for a “bone graft from the patient’s own body,” and those costs includes “two surgery sites, hospitalization, and an anesthesiologist” (Murphy 2019). People may have to pay around $3,000 for a bone graft needed for an implant (Murphy 2019).
People can pay for these bone grafts with the help of dental and medical insurance. Although people usually do not receive dental coverage for implants, they may receive partial coverage for a bone graft “if it is deemed to be medically necessary” (“Dental Bone Graft Cost”). People can utilize supplemental dental coverage, which “pays for the bone graft surgery after a 6-month waiting period” (Haney 2018). When people do not have any dental coverage for bone grafts, they can instead utilize their health insurance to help pay for their bone grafts, “[i]f the bone loss was caused by accident, injury or a non-dental medical condition…” (“Dental Bone Graft Cost”; Tekavec 2002). People can also use their dental benefits or medical benefits for their bone grafts, if their “ability to eat is severely compromised by the bone loss and cannot be fixed by other options like dentures…” (“Dental Bone Graft Cost”).
People need bone grafts for a variety of reasons, including addressing bone loss in their jaw and supporting their implants. Although these grafts cost a lot for some people, they can utilize their dental or medical coverage to help pay for them. Albeit, dental and medical insurance have their own caveats for covering bone grafts.