Benign prostatic hyperplasia (BPH), also known as prostate gland enlargement, is a medical condition many men get as they grow older. Symptoms include frequent need to urinate, having difficulty urinating, and the inability to empty the bladder.
Fortunately, there are treatments for this medical condition. One of these treatments is Green Light Laser Therapy.
If this treatment is one you are considering, you may have the common question “Does Medicare cover Green Light Laser Therapy?”
In this article, we answer that question in clear, plain English. You will also find the average costs of Green Light Laser Therapy and other helpful info.
Does Medicare Cover Green Light Laser Therapy?
The short answer is yes. Medicare will cover the cost of Green Light Laser Therapy. But not 100% of the time. As is often the case with Medicare, certain conditions have to be met in order for Medicare to pay for your Green Light Laser Therapy. Below we look at what these are so you know what to expect.
Original Medicare (Medicare Part A and Part B) provides coverage for Green Light Laser Therapy.
Green Light Laser Therapy is usually an outpatient procedure. This means that coverage for the procedure often falls under Medicare Part B. Medicare Part B will cover Green Light Laser Therapy when it’s used to treat for benign prostatic hyperplasia. Preauthorization is not necessary in order to get coverage for Green Light Laser Therapy.
Once approved by Medicare Part B, it will cover 80 percent of Green Light Laser Therapy costs.
Medicare Advantage (Medicare Part C) also provides coverage for Green Light Laser Therapy. It covers everything Original Medicare covers, as well as some additional benefits. However, precisely what it covers and how much the out-of-pocket costs are will vary depending on your plan’s specifics.
Cost of Treatment
The average cost for Green Light Laser Therapy is around $3,700.
How Does Green Light Laser Therapy Work?
The doctor will insert a small flexible fiber into the patient’s urethra through the cystoscope. The small fiber carries laser energy that can remove prostate tissues quickly.
Once the prostate tissue is removed, the patient will be able to urinate properly as the urine is now able to pass through freely.
Before the procedure, your healthcare will give you anesthesia, so there will be little to no discomfort and pain. The doctor will also prescribe pain medications to the patient.
What Happens After Green Light Laser Therapy?
After the Green Light Laser Therapy, the patient may experience mild discomfort such as burning while urinating. Patients may experience this discomfort for a week or so before it fades away.
But there is nothing to worry about as most patients can resume normal activities days after the procedure. Your healthcare provider will discuss some of the activities you should avoid in the days that following the procedure.
One of the main benefits of this treatment is that there is less of a chance of experiencing severe blood loss compared to other procedures. Also this procedure does not require that you stay in the hospital for days post-treatment.
Note: Medicare coverage changes all the time. And your specific coverage may vary from plan to plan for Medicare Advantage and Medigap plans. Always be sure to double check with your health care provider and/or Medicare insurance provider about what your plan covers and what it does not.
Additional Info on Medicare Coverage
This article is part of our series on “What does Medicare cover?”
Also, you can check out other articles in this series including: Does Medicare cover counseling?