Reconstructive surgery is surgery performed on abnormal body structures caused by congenital defects, trauma, disease, etc. Reconstructive surgery generally improves function but also may improve appearance. Reconstructive surgery is covered by most health insurance plans.
Cosmetic surgery is usually not covered by health insurance plans because it is considered to be elective in most cases. Cosmetic surgery is not considered a medical necessity. However, some surgeries require special consideration by the health insurance industry.
Some surgical procedures can be considered reconstructive or cosmetic, depending on the patient and his or her particular circumstance. For instance, eyelid surgery (blepharoplasty), usually performed to achieve a cosmetic enhancement, may also correct severely drooping eyelids that obscure vision. Rhinoplasty (nose surgery) that corrects a defect that causes breathing problems is another example of cosmetic surgery having a corrective and cosmetic result at the same time. Only Dr. Smoot, after an initial consultation, can decide why and if you need a specific surgery to correct your problem.
If you have questions concerning cosmetic surgery and insurance coverage, please contact California cosmetic surgeons Wendell Smoot, M.D., F.A.C.S. and John Smoot, M.D., F.A.C.S. at Cosmetic Plastic Surgery today.