Is Rhinoplasty Covered by Insurance?

Rhinoplasty that is aimed at cosmetic improvement will not be covered by insurance. However, rhinoplasty aimed at correcting functional issues, called functional rhinoplasty or septoplasty, may be partially or fully covered. Functional rhinoplasty (to repair the inner structures of the nose and create free airflow) is for patients who were born with a deviated septum or excessively narrow nose, have experienced nasal trauma from an accident or sports injury or have other functional defects. 

Technically, functional rhinoplasty is not cosmetic surgery since it’s done to correct a medical issue with your nose. Functional rhinoplasty does not always make visible changes in the appearance of your nose, but the nasal contours can be changed to a more appealing form if you like. Discuss your goals for surgery with an experienced plastic surgeon, preferably one with reconstructive experience. This will help ensure you have positive results, improving both your breathing and your nasal shape.

Rhinoplasty Benefits

Functional rhinoplasty helps you to breathe better and enjoy life more. Untreated, nasal obstruction can affect your quality of life. Rhinoplasty can help with:

  • Congestion
  • Mouth breathing
  • Dry mouth
  • Reduced sense of smell
  • Recurring nosebleeds
  • Chronic sinus infection
  • Headaches due to sinus pressure
  • Insomnia and fatigue
  • Sleep apnea
  • And more

Always check with your health insurer before you make any assumptions regarding coverage. In many cases, the lines of what is considered medically necessary can be difficult to determine.  

If you are unable to obtain coverage through your health insurance, or are concerned about managing costs for your portion of the payment, you could consider the following potential options:

Credit Card: If you have a credit card with a low interest rate, you could consider this an option for your rhinoplasty costs. Some plastic surgeons accept credit cards specifically marketed/intended for medical or cosmetic care.

FSA (Flexible Spending Accounts): If your employer offers a flexible spending account, you may be allowed to use this pre-tax savings account to pay some or all of your costs for rhinoplasty. Check with your plan administrator about rules for your plan.

HSA (Health Savings Account): These savings accounts are part of certain high-deductible health insurance plans or catastrophic coverage plans. Plan participants use their pre-tax health savings account to pay for medical care until they reach their high deductible. Medically necessary portions of your surgery may qualify. Check with your plan administrator about rules.

To find out if functional rhinoplasty is right for you, contact David W. Allison, MD at 703-754-8228 or website to schedule a consultation with Dr. Allison.