Babies: 6 - 9 Months

Hypospadias surgery...learning to let go...

So I have posted before about planning and dealing with the anxiety of DS having a correctional surgery on his boy part. DH and I have been going back and forth, and asking others "opinions" for the past 2 months. The surgery is scheduled for next Wednesday and in the past few weeks I have come to terms and gotten over most of the anxiety of the whole thing. My husband and I have talked so much about LO's penis that we're about sick of it!

The financial lady called yesterday to make sure all of our insurance information is correct and  told me an estimate of the cost, which is about $2300 just for the procedure. This does not include any doctor fees or the anesthesiologist. This has but a big halt in the surgery plans! We were expecting no more than at most $2000 for our portion. We just used our tax returns to pay off the hospital and doctor bills of his birth, now to turn around and have to charge another $3000+ is it really worth it!?!?!?

The procedure in this case is PURELY cosmetic. Functionally LO is fine, his little pee pee is just a little off, and he will have to aim a little different, but other than that he's just normal. 

I have told my husband repeatedly I trust his decision, considering he's a man and knows how men feel towards their boy parts! He's now worried that I will hate him or be upset with him later because we don't do it. Neither of us feel confident one way or the other honestly, we see the reasons to do it and see reasons why not to do it.

I'm not looking for an answer here, just expressing myself in a neutral zone. I do think not doing it, we'll wonder "what if we had done it" and if there's any frustration in potty training we'll blame not correcting it. But I really feel okay either way. We are a one income family and I'm a part time student at a community college so money is EXTREMELY tight, so not putting the extra burden on DH I think is worth every penny.  

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Re: Hypospadias surgery...learning to let go...

  • Man, that's really tough.  Is it a now or never kind of thing?  Are you SURE that's your out of pocket cost?  What's your max out of pocket for the year?  Can they give you a discount for paying up front?  (I got a 30% discount on my delivery for paying up front).
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  • It needs to be done before 18 months, but I feel that if we are going to do it, I'd rather do it now when he's only 7 months old and doesn't even know it's there yet! I spoke with the lady yesterday and that is our estimated cost after insurance pays their 80%, so like I said that doesn't include the doctor fees or the anesthesiologist, and then in 5 days after the surgery we would have to go back and have the catheter removed which would cost $60 copay, and whatever the doctors fees were...our out of pocket max is $3500, which we would be close to meeting if not meeting in this one procedure.

    Like I said it doesn't look bad, just a little off. And we of course want whatever to be perfect that we can on him, but what if he comes out looking worse? In most hypospadias situations, they are uncircumcised. They use the extra skin to make the correction. Well our doctors circumcised him and didn't mention the hypospadias. We realized it a few months later and here we are now. :(

    I will call and ask if there is a discount for paying up front, however then I have to measure out the difference between the discount and the extra finance charges on the credit card to see which would be better. It will just be hard since we just paid so much off on the credit card, to add it back up. And i hate the financial burden to be so much on DH. 

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  • Why are you putting it on a credit card? I've never had a medical bill that had interest on it.
  • If they offer a discount for paying for it up front we would put it on the credit card. Otherwise we will need to work out a payment plan with the hospital, & doctors offices to make payments.
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  • Most hospitals will help you with a negotiated price if you apply. Also address your concerns with the doctor to see if he will also give an adjusted fee for you. Best of luck. 


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  • I would go for it. Get it taken care of now. This is just my personal opinion.

    Could be awkward for him later in life as an adult and I think it would be a frightening surgery to have performed as he gets older. 

  • I know you weren't really asking for an opinion, but I'm going to throw in my 2 cents anyway.  Take it or leave it.  

     

    I think the least of your concerns is potty training.  I'd think it would be a big deal to DS as he grows up.  I'd do it now.  You can ALWAYS negotiate medical bills if you can't afford it. 

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  • Sorry you are going through this :(

    If you think it's necessary to do the procedure though, just do it.  Hospitals are usually extremely reasonable.  I know when my son was born we didn't have much cash since I'd been out of work most of the year.  As bills came in, I called and said I didn' t have the money and asked how much I HAD to send that month.  They all told me just to send what we had.  They said as long as we paid SOMETHING each month, our account was fine and no one charged interest for not paying it all up front.

    SN: My best friend actually paid $5/month toward her son's birth for years.  It's much more common than you think. 

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  • When we had a high deductible plan, my DH ended up in the ER, and we got a 3k bill.  The hospital was EXTREMELY reasonable with a payment plan.  They basically asked if we could pay a certain amount, and I said we couldn't afford it.  We ended up paying $100/month, interest-free, until it was paid off. That would be a much better option than putting it on a credit card - much less stressful.

    Again, I'm sorry you have to make this decision.  If it were me, I'd get the surgery done now.  I would certainly do it before it's too late - even if it's only cosmetic, you don't want your DS growing up having issues with his penis.

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  • Hi. How are you. My little boy also has hypospadias, and was also circumcised. We were going to have surgery at 8 months but do to recurring UTI's they are doing more test. My husband and I also went back and forth with whether or not the surgery was best. Depending on what these test say we will have the surgery to correct it. I would just suggest taking the finacial aspect out of it b/c like others have said the hospital will work with you on it. I would also suggest talking to other parents who have gone through the surgery, and parents who decided not to. I found a great support group n facebook that helped my husband and I. In the end the decision is your's and your husband's. 
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  • NEVER would I let finances come in to play to correct a birth defect... and TRUST ME I know the cost of this kind of decision.  DS1 allowed me to write the book on this in 2010.

    I would sincerely urge you to rethink this from PURELY a cosmetic vs. necessary perspective.  

    Prudence
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