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CostHelper > Health & Personal Care  > Orthopedics and Injuries > Broken Sternum

Broken Sternum Cost


How Much Does a Broken Sternum Cost?

 
low costWith Insurance: Copays & Coinsurance to Out-of-Pocket Maximumaverage costWithout Insurance: $500-$8,000+
Typical costs:
  • Without insurance, the typical cost for diagnosis and treatment of a broken sternum (breastbone) could range from less than $500 for a simple sternal fracture that does not require hospital admission up to $8,000 or more if other injuries, such as heart or lung injuries, are suspected and hospitalization is required. A breastbone X-ray costs an average of $210, according to NewChoiceHealth.com[1] , though some radiology centers charge $1,000 or more. And a typical doctor fee for an office visit for a fracture costs $90 to $200, according to Carolina Orthopaedic Surgery Associates[2] . Several auto accident claims sites offer examples of medical costs[3] for a broken sternum requiring hospitalization[4] .
  • Health insurance generally would cover a broken sternum, and, if the injury was caused by an auto accident, which is common, car insurance also might cover some costs, depending on the policy. With health insurance, typical expenses include a doctor visit copay of $10 to $30 or more, drug copays for pain medication and, if hospitalization is required, coinsurance of 30 percent or more that could add up to thousands of dollars or the yearly out-of-pocket maximum.
Related articles: Broken Back, Broken Arm, Broken Clavicle, Broken Leg, Broken Tailbone Treatment

What should be included:
  • The doctor typically will check for associated injuries, if necessary, and administer pain medication as needed; splinting and taping is not advised for sternal fractures. It is extremely rare that a broken sternum would be treated surgically. When no other injuries are present, a broken sternum can be treated on an outpatient basis. Typically, several weeks off from work -- months for physically strenuous jobs -- is required.
  • eMedicine.com[5] offers an overview of treatment for a broken sternum.
Additional costs:
  • Because up to 90 percent of sternal fractures are caused by auto accidents, there could be additional costs for being transported by ambulance, as well as emergency room fees and ER doctor fees. This could add thousands of dollars to the final bill, especially if there are other injuries.
Discounts:
  • Some orthopedic specialists offer discounts for uninsured/cash paying patients. For example, Southern California Orthopedic Institute offers discounted services for cash-paying patients, and Northwest Community Hospital Orthopedic Services Center[6] , in Chicago, offers discounts for prompt payment.
  • Some free clinics, such as Community Health Free Clinic[7] in Chicago, offer orthopedic specialty care. The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services[8] provides a directory of federally funded health centers; if the nearest clinic doesn't offer orthopedic care, ask for a referral.
Shopping for a broken sternum:
  • A general practitioner can refer the patient to a specialist. Or, the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery[9] offers an orthopedic surgeon finder by city, state or zip code. For a sports injury, the patient could seek treatment from a sports medicine specialist, which could be either a family physician or an orthopedic surgeon; the American Osteopathic Academy of Sports Medicine has a doctor finder.
Material on this page is for informational purposes only and should not be construed as medical advice. Always consult your physician or pharmacist regarding medications or medical procedures.
 
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External Resources:
  1.  newchoicehealth.com/Directory/Procedure/78/Breastbone%20X-Ray
  2.  www.c-osa.com/charges.htm
  3.  en.allexperts.com/q/Auto-Insurance-Claims-2055/pain-suffering-payment.htm
  4.  www.carcrashassist.com/female-has-fracture-sternum-with-a-lot-of-pain/
  5.  emedicine.medscape.com/article/826169-treatment
  6.  www.nch.org/medical-services/orthopedic-services/index.php
  7.  www.communityhfc.org/referals.htm
  8.  findahealthcenter.hrsa.gov/Search_HCC.aspx
  9.  www.abos.org/find-a-certified-orthopaedic-surgeon.aspx
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