Outsourcing My Hip Surgery: A Medical Tourism Tale

How I went to India to get new hips-and why you shouldn't be afraid to follow my lead

The Shocking Fruits of My Labor

Post surgery, I was amazed to see how thin my incision was. "You'd expressed concern about the scar, so I used a plastic surgery technique to close the incision," explained Dr. Bose. How many U.S. surgeons take pains to seal their incisions so thoughtfully, I wondered. My only post-op instructions: I was given a list of exercises to do to speed my recovery and told to call my U.S. doctor in a few weeks to remove my stitches.

Ultimately, I paid $5,600 for my new pelvis. The price included the surgeon's fee, a week's hospital stay (including two days of round-the-clock private nursing), the prosthesis and all my meals and meds. The American equivalent of these services? After all was said and done, I calculated that it would have cost me $40,000.

The Lessons I Learned

For the more than 46 million Americans lacking health insurance and countless others in the U.S. who can't afford operations here, other countries offer Americans a terrific opportunity to leverage their First World dollars into first-class care. The world is your oyster. All it takes is an empowered attitude and ruthless research of all your options.

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