Healthcare Cost

How Much Does an Endoscopy Cost Without Insurance in 2021?

Ashley Brooks28 Sep 2021

An endoscopy is a procedure done to visually screen and investigate conditions of the upper gastrointestinal tract. Without insurance, this procedure can cost between $1,250 and $4,800. These costs typically cover the fee for the physician performing the endoscopy, the anesthesiologist, and the facility. 

Medical procedures such as endoscopies can be costly without insurance. Preventative care can help you lead a healthier life and as a result, avoid costly medical procedures. Mira provides access to affordable preventative care and prescriptions for just $45 per month. Sign up and start using services today! 

The Cost of an Endoscopy

The cost of a colonoscopy typically ranges between $1,250 to over $4,800 in the United States with a national average price of an endoscopy being $2,750. Below you can find the average costs compared to national averages and the overall target fair price, which is the believed true value of the service. 

  • National Average: $2,750
  • National Range: $1,250 - $4,800+
  • Target Fair Price: $2,450

The cost of an endoscopy varies greatly depending on where you get this procedure done. In the sections below we outline the price ranges in different cities and at different facilities in the United States. 

The Cost of an Endoscopy by City

Below is a breakdown of the typical cost of endoscopy by the city in the United States. 

LocationCost
Atlanta, GA$975 - $3,200
Chicago, IL$1,100 - $3,500
Dallas, TX$1,000 - $3,300
Houston, TX$1,000 - $3,300
Miami, FL$1,050 - $3,500
Los Angeles, CA$1,500 - $4,900
Philadelphia, PA$1,150 - $3,700
New York, NY$1,200 - $3,900
Washington, DC$1,150 - $3,700
Phoenix, AZ$1,050 - $3,500

The Cost of an Endoscopy By Facility

Endoscopies can be performed in either inpatient or outpatient facilities. Inpatient facilities, such as hospitals, are generally expensive, as costs cover maintenance of the facilities, supplies, and hospital rooms. Endoscopy procedures done at outpatient facilities, such as clinics and other surgical centers are oftentimes less expensive. 

  • Outpatient Facility Average: $2,550
  • Inpatient Facility Average: $4,350

Factors that Influence the Cost of an Endoscopy

The cost of an endoscopy procedure can vary depending on the facility, your location, as well as the type of sedatives and treatments utilized during the procedure. Review our frequently asked questions for insight from a Gastroenterologist about the types of sedatives one may receive during this procedure. 

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Below we describe how various factors can affect the price of an endoscopy. 

Facility

As previously discussed, where you receive your procedure can influence the price you pay. Endoscopies are more expensive at inpatient facilities than outpatient centers because these facilities are more costly to maintain. Therefore, if you can get an endoscopy at an outpatient facility, you will likely save money. 

Location

Based on the table above, the location in which you have your procedure can also influence the cost of endoscopy. In Los Angeles, you may be expected to pay upwards of $4,900 compared to Atlanta, where one typically has to pay up to $3,200. 

Insurance Status

A procedure like an endoscopy is typically covered by insurance when ordered by a doctor, but you are still responsible for meeting your deductible and paying for the copay or coinsurance. If you have insurance, you should make sure that you get an endoscopy at an in-network provider, as this will likely be cheaper than going to an out-of-network provider. 

Without health insurance, you can expect to pay a few thousand dollars out-of-pocket for this procedure. You can call multiple facilities in advance to see if any doctors offer special rates for individuals paying without insurance. 

If you don’t have insurance, Mira may be a great option for you. Mira is an alternative to health insurance that helps people access low-cost preventative care, prescriptions, lab tests, and more. 

Endoscopy Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Below are some commonly asked and answered questions regarding endoscopy procedures, with assistance from Gastroenterologist Jesse P. Houghton.

What is an endoscopy?

An endoscopy is a procedure that visually examines the upper digestive system using a small camera at the end of a long and flexible tube. A gastroenterologist - or a specialist in the digestive system - uses endoscopy to diagnose and treat conditions affecting the esophagus, stomach, and beginning of the small intestine. 

Why and when do doctors recommend an endoscopy?

An endoscopy is used to investigate, diagnose and treat conditions of the upper portion of your digestive tract. By utilizing the camera at the end of the long tube, doctors are able to see what is going on in your digestive tract and help determine the cause of issues such as nausea, vomiting, abdominal pain, difficulty swallowing, or gastrointestinal bleeding. 

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Endoscopies are also a mechanism for screenings, such as colon cancer. Conditions that are typically found vary, but according to Gastroenterologist Jesse P. Houghton, MD, FACG, the most common findings on an upper endoscopy include hiatal hernia, reflux esophagitis, and gastritis.

How do you prepare for an endoscopy?

Doctors recommend fasting for at least four to eight hours before your procedure to ensure that your stomach is empty. It is also recommended that you stop taking certain medications such as blood-thinners prior to your procedure as they may increase your risk of bleeding. Should you have other chronic conditions requiring medication, be sure to consult your doctor for specific recommendations on procedure safety.

According to Dr. Houghton, “In the United States, we typically sedate a patient for both an upper endoscopy as well as lower colonoscopy. The two main types of sedation include conscious sedation and deep sedation or monitored anesthesia care. In other parts of the world, the upper endoscopy (and sometimes even the colonoscopy) are performed with the patient awake by only providing a numbing spray.” 

What should you expect after an endoscopy?

Dr. Houghton explains that a patient usually feels fine after the procedure but may have some abdominal cramping from the air put into the body during the procedure, although this is typically not painful. If a patient receives conscious sedation, they will be groggy afterward for a period of time. If they receive monitored anesthesia care, they will be wide awake and clear-headed almost immediately following the procedure. A patient can usually eat a normal diet once they leave the hospital or surgery center. 

How can you save money on an endoscopy procedure?

While the cost of endoscopy can widely range, if you are trying to budget you may want to consider the following to reduce the costs of the procedure:

  1. Go to an outpatient facility rather than a hospital if possible.
  2. Opt for the generic version of medications if receiving a prescription. A membership with Mira can help you get up to 80% off your prescriptions.
  3. Call multiple facilities in and outside your area, as you may save money traveling a bit further depending on where you live.
  4. If you have insurance, make sure to go to an in-network provider.
  5. Ask your provider if there are any special rates available for individuals without insurance.

Bottom Line

An endoscopy procedure can be costly, with the price of this service ranging from $1,250 to $4,800. The price that you will pay for an endoscopy depends on your insurance status, location, facility, and necessary prescriptions. 

A membership with Mira can help you engage in preventative care, which is a great way to avoid high-cost procedures. For only $45 per month, Mira can give you peace of mind by helping you access low-cost lab tests, prescriptions, urgent care services.