Reconstructive surgery, also called plastic surgery, is a type of surgery designed to reconstruct parts of the face or body. Plastic surgery can address defects due to birth disorders, burns, diseases or other trauma. Whereas cosmetic surgery is often designed to enhance one’s appearance, reconstructive surgery’s aim is to correct existing problems.
Figuring out how to finance reconstructive surgery can be difficult, because it may not be covered by insurance. The costs can be thousands of dollars, but if the procedure is a high priority to you, there are options to pay for it.
Ways to Pay for Reconstructive Plastic Surgery:
- Personal Credit Cards: Personal credit cards are a popular way to obtain plastic surgery financing quickly. Either an individual already has enough credit to cover the cost of the surgery, or they can fairly easily obtain a new line of credit. This can be an especially attractive option if you open a line of credit with an initial 0% APR offer. However, if you exceed the introductory offer or finance your plastic surgery on an existing line of credit without such an offer, you could be paying significantly more over time.
- Medical Credit Cards: Medical credit cards provide an easy-to-obtain method of financing for qualified individuals, and they help to pay for procedures that are either not covered by a patient’s medical insurance or not entirely covered. However, as with all contracts, it’s important to read the fine print when obtaining a medical credit card. The terms of many of these types of credit cards may include harsh penalties for a missed payment. Additionally, interest can be applied to prior expenses if the balance of the card is not paid off in total by the end of the promotional period.
- 401(k) Account Loan: Many 401(k) accounts will let you borrow up to a certain amount of your vested balance with minimal difficulty and at low interest rates. Loan repayments are then automatically deducted from your paycheck until the balance is paid off. This can be an effective method to finance your plastic surgery. However, there are additional factors to consider. You will want to look carefully at any taxes or penalties that you may potentially encounter.
- Home Equity Loan: A home equity loan is another possible plastic surgery financing option if you are a homeowner. A home equity loan can offer significant credit over a long time at low monthly payments because the value of your home is used as collateral for the loan. Keep in mind, though, that home equity loans may either use a fixed interest rate (as Discover Home Loans does1) or a variable rate which is commonly based on the current prime rate (the index) plus a certain amount of percentage points (the margin). This means, with a variable interest rate, your interest rate can change. Additionally, if your overall home value decreases significantly, you could end up with negative equity in your home. However, financing through home equity may be an option to consider if you need more than $35,000.
- Doctor’s Payment Plan: Some plastic surgeons offer in-house financing options for their patients. Be sure to ask your doctor about the possibility and what interest charges may apply. But should you need additional surgery, however, this may put you in a difficult position if you haven’t yet paid off your first procedure in full.
- Savings: If you are able to pay out-of-pocket, you won’t have to take on any additional debt. You also won’t have to pay any extra in interest costs. You should consider how much of your savings you are willing to devote to the plastic surgery, however. Spending your savings means that you have less immediate access to cash should an emergency occur.
- Personal Loans: It is possible that you could get a better interest rate on a personal loan compared to a credit card. Additionally, some personal loans—including Discover personal loans—have fixed interest rates and terms. This means you will know exactly what your monthly payment will be for the life of the loan, making budgeting for this big expense a bit easier and more predictable. With a Discover personal loan, you can check your rate before you apply without affecting your credit score. If your application is approved, your funds can be sent as early as next business day after acceptance.
Like the procedure itself, deciding how to finance your reconstructive surgery is a highly personal process. There are pros and cons to each option. Explore and examine each option as to how it could affect your personal financial situation. These suggestions are hopefully a helpful start. Be sure to carry out further research until you find the option that best fits your life.
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1 Discover Home Equity Loan APR Disclosure: The lowest APR is available to borrowers requesting at least $80,000 with the best credit and other factors. The APR will be between 3.99% and 7.99% for first liens and 3.99% and 11.99% for second liens based on loan amount and a review of credit-worthiness, including income and property information, at the time of application. Rates are subject to change at any time. Please visit Discover.com/home-loans/rates for more information. Loan amounts available from $35,000 to $200,000.