Friday, September 30, 2011

Toric Lens Implant Cost

Question: I have a question about the cost of a toric lens implant for astigmatism and cataracts. Why is my surgical facility is charging $395 cost for the toric lens implant and the cataract surgeon is also charging $755.00 for the toric lens too, aside from the surgery fee, facility fee and anesthesia fee? We don't understand why we are charged twice for one lens. Please help. The surgical facility center is claiming that the toric lens cost is $395 and that they don't know why the cataract surgeon is charging me $755.00 more for the same lens too.

Answer: We can only comment on the usual way in which fees for services and lens implants are assessed. In some eye care practices the surgeon collects the entire fee for incremental cost of the toric lens implant along with the fee for the extra diagnostic, evaluation and measurement services necessary to prescribe and calculate the toric lens implant to be used. In some eye care practices the surgical facility collects the fee for the actual toric lens implant cost AND THEN the surgeon collects only the fee for the extra diagnostic, evaluation and measurement services necessary to prescribe and calculate the toric lens implant to be used.

It seems as if your situation is the second one-the facility is directly charging you for the toric lens implant and your Cataract Surgeon is charging you for the ancillary services related to the evaluation, measurement and calculation for the toric lens implant. These ancillary services and diagnostic tests may include a corneal topography measurement to confirm that the astigmatism is on your cornea and not in the cataract which is being removed, it may include an aberromtery measurement, a dry eye evaluation and testing, a second type of biometry to confirm the actual lens power and possibly an ocular coherence tomography (OCT) assessment to confirm the health and stability of your macula. The diagnostic evaluation and measurement for toric lens implants as well as near vision presbyopia correcting implants requires considerably greater precision and consideration and thus additional testing at the discretion of the surgeon. This generates additional fees and costs for toric lens implants above and beyond what the lens implant itself costs and what insurance or Medicare will pay. Our best guess is that you are being charged $755 for some of these services as opposed to the cost of the lens itself-however you should feel free to question your Cataract Surgeon to determine if this is the case.

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