Knee replacement surgery, also called total knee arthroplasty, is one of the most common orthopedic procedures in the United States. It may be an option if arthritis in your knee joint is causing you pain and limiting your range of motion. Your knee replacement surgery cost will depend on different factors, such as where you have your surgery and whether you have health insurance.
During this surgery, a physician removes the damaged parts of the bones in your knee and replaces them with an artificial joint made of metal and medical-grade plastic. With proper care, an artificial knee joint may last up to 15 years or more.
What is the average cost of a total knee replacement?
The average cost for total knee replacement surgery in the United States is $32,570, though prices can range from $14,188 to $49,016 or much, much more.
The total cost of your knee replacement surgery depends on a few different factors, such as whether you get the surgery in an inpatient facility, like a hospital, or an outpatient surgery center. Outpatient orthopedic procedures are associated with lower costs and faster recovery times. Your healthcare provider will help you determine whether you’re a good candidate for outpatient knee surgery.
Based on our data, the target fair price for total knee arthroplasty, including the cost of the implant, is $24,680, whether you have health insurance or not.
- National Average: $32,570
- National Range: $14,188 – $49,016+
- Outpatient Facility Average: $25,100
- Inpatient Facility Average: $41,620
- Target Fair Price: $24,680
Keep reading for our breakdown on what determines the cost of your knee replacement surgery and how you can find the best price for your procedure.
Knee Replacement Surgery Cost Averages Around the Country
These prices do not include the cost of the knee implant, which can add up to $6,000 – $12,000 to the total cost of your surgery.
Which factors affect how much total knee arthroplasty costs?
Many things can affect the price that you pay for healthcare. The four main factors that will determine the cost of your knee replacement surgery are:
- Facility setting — The cost of your knee replacement surgery will depend on where you have it done. Getting a knee replacement in a hospital will be significantly more expensive than having it done in an outpatient center. Inpatient facilities tend to cost more to run, so patients end up paying more for care.
- Insured or uninsured — If you have health insurance, the cost of your total knee replacement can depend on how much of the surgery your insurance plan covers, if any at all. If you don’t have health insurance, you can expect to pay the entire cost of the surgery out-of-pocket.
- Location — The cost of knee replacement surgery can vary by state, region, and even city. If you live in a rural area with fewer facilities to choose from, you will probably pay more than you would if you lived in a city with many providers. This is why more and more people are choosing to travel to lower-cost areas to save money on medical procedures.
- Implant selection — Some implant brands are more expensive than others, and the supplier your hospital or surgery center uses can affect the total price you pay for your surgery. The cost of your implant can also depend on the materials it’s made of, as well as whether it’s customized or off-the-shelf.
What is the cost difference between inpatient and outpatient facilities?
Inpatient and outpatient facilities charge very different prices for the same procedures. The national average cost for total knee arthroplasty at inpatient facilities is $41,620, while the same procedure at outpatient surgery centers averages $25,100.
How much is total knee replacement surgery with or without insurance?
If you’re insured, you can usually expect to pay less for your procedure than an uninsured patient, especially if you stay in-network. This is because health insurance companies negotiate with facilities in their network to get surgeries at a lower cost. If you don’t have health insurance, the cost of surgery falls on you and, ultimately, costs more.
In-network vs. out-of-network cost differences
Before you schedule your surgery, check to confirm whether your surgeon is in-network or out-of-network for your insurance plan. In-network providers will almost always be cheaper than out-of-network providers. This does not apply to patients who are uninsured. Without insurance, you are responsible for the full cost of total knee replacement surgery.
How much does a total knee replacement cost out-of-pocket?
Almost everyone who has knee replacement surgery will have to pay at least part of the cost out-of-pocket. If you’re insured, your out-of-pocket cost will depend on your deductible, copay, and coinsurance amounts. If you’re uninsured, you’ll be responsible for the total cost of your surgery.
What else can affect the cost of total knee replacement surgery?
- Prescriptions — You may need to take painkillers, blood thinners, or antibiotics after your knee replacement surgery. Medicine can be expensive. You can ensure you’re getting the best price by checking that all your prescriptions are covered by your health insurance. You can also lower the cost by asking for generic versions of your prescriptions. These will be cheaper than name brands.
- Additional office visits — Sometimes, you may be charged a separate fee for an initial consultation with the surgeon before the surgery. You may also be charged for the follow-up visits you schedule after your procedure. (For knee replacement surgery, you’ll typically check in with your healthcare provider after two weeks, six weeks, three months, and one year.) Ask which, if any, of these follow-up visits are included in the total cost of your procedure.
Are there alternatives to getting a total knee replacement?
Knee replacement surgery is only recommended after you’ve tried nonsurgical treatment options without success. If your doctor recommends this procedure, it’s probably because they think it’s the only way to relieve your knee pain and instability. However, you can always speak to another physician to get a second opinion before committing to surgery.
Nonsurgical alternatives to total knee replacement may include:
- Physical therapy
- Low-impact exercise
- Joint supplements
- Steroid injections
- Hyaluronic acid injections
- Weight loss (if excess weight is contributing to your knee pain)
The goal of these treatments is to reduce knee pain and inflammation and restore your range of motion. You can always ask your doctor if any alternatives to total knee replacement may work for your specific situation. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and talk about your concerns before scheduling surgery.
Your total knee replacement surgery checklist
- Review the total cost of your knee replacement surgery with your surgeon, including prescriptions and follow-up visits. Ask them to explain the different charges you’ll be responsible for, and keep a record of their answers in writing. If you get a medical bill that’s higher than you expected, this information will come in handy.
- Ask your surgeon if you can get your knee replacement in an outpatient setting.
- Check that all of your providers are in-network for your insurance, not just your main surgeon. Patients are often surprised by fees associated with out-of-network anesthesiologists and other specialists.
- Ask what added costs you may see if the surgeon encounters complications during your procedure.
Finding a fair price for your total knee arthroplasty
The average cost for knee replacement surgery in the U.S. is $32,570, but you may be able to pay significantly less for your procedure. By scheduling your knee replacement through New Choice Health’s Orthopedic Surgery Assistance program, you can find financing options and take advantage of discounted pricing ranging from $21,000 to $29,000.