Insurance coverage of aneurysms?

Hi everyone,
I’ve found out that I have a 3mm aneurysm on my MCA bifurcation so it has a wide neck. I have been spending time on the forum since finding out about my annie a couple months ago. It has been immensily helpful and thanks to all the people who have shared their stories. Here’s mine :smile:
I am a US citizen but currently live in Turkey - my neurosurgeon here recommends clipping surgery. I know he is a top neurosurgeon so I do trust him but we are supposed to move back to the US/Seattle in 2 months and I worry about doing the surgery here and then managing a move afterward. I have 2 questions for this group:
Question 1: has anyone who chose to do surgery on a 3mm or less aneurysm been denied by their insurance company. I have been approved here in Turkey but we have different coverage in the states (Aetna PPO). I would stay in network but just wonder if there is a chance of denial for the surgery and insurance says no. I don’t want to wait - I want to get the surgery.

Question 2: my neurosurgeon says flying home after surgery shouldn’t be a problem, says I can fly after 2 weeks but that seems so quick after craniotomy. I’ve read a bunch about flying having issues - has anyone flown that soon after a clipping surgery?

Thank you in advance for any input or experiences you can share!

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Insurance does cover it after the deductible good luck I know the waiting game can be so tedious

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Hi,

I just got my 2nd opinion yesterday which also recommended a craniotomy and clipping for my residual aneurysm that was coiled in Dec. I am now pending insurance approval. But, I don’t expect it to be denied regardless of the size.

I’m flying to CA from TX for the surgery. My neuro said I could fly home a week after the surgery with no issues (assuming all goes well). I was told my neuro has patients fly in from around the world to see him specifically and fly home a week later. I can share more once I personally experience it next month.

I am also interested to know if anyone else has had clipping. If so, what year and how long was your recovery period.

Christina

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Welcome Elise! I will officially welcome you on Sunday when I do the welcomes. I didn’t get the opportunity to ask for a second opinion and I haven’t had a craniotomy. But we did have a member who was told they couldn’t scuba dive by a surgeon. So make sure you ask yours. We have also had members who chose to have surgery in one State and then was denied follow up by the surgeons in their areas, others haven’t had a problem with it.

All of our members who have had either method to repair theirs was told they could fly. The ones who have are usually affected by the noise and lights, make sure to take some ear buds and a mask. I have never read anything in the numerous journals that flying was a risk. I usually stick with NIH or Canada’s as that’s what comes up when I am on the Google.

You might want to reach out to your insurance company and ask if it can be done Stateside, although I don’t think they will deny it. It’s much less expensive for them if it is repaired before it ruptures.

I am curious as to why your surgeon prefers a craniotomy over coiling, do you know?

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Thank you @cdyvsc for the information. Good luck on your next surgery and flying - my neuro in Turkey said the same thing. That I could fly after 2 weeks and he has patients coming from all over also to see him and then they fly home.

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thank you for your response!

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Thank you for the welcome. The BAF has been immensily helpful in my journey. Thank you for all you do to keep the online communit going also. Where I’ve seen things about flying was people in forum who said the ascent and descents could be painful with headaches and pressure.

My aneurysm is at a bifurcation and wide necked, so we could do coiling with 2 stents but then I would be taking blood thinners which I didn’t want to do since I’m really active and don’t want to worry about nuisance bleeding. I also like that the clipping has such a high rate of success, seemed to be a good choice for me even though so much more invasive.

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I’ve never had an issue with those when I fly, it’s just all the noise, the lights and the guy in front who puts his seat too far back or the person behind who keeps pressing on my back. On one flight I got up and told a kid if he kicked my seat again I would put him in time out :rofl:. I much preferred when we could upgrade at the gate to first class for $25 and then $50. BH says they don’t do that anymore.

I understand why you would choose a craniotomy, thank you! With my stent (Neuroform Atlas Stent) at the LICA bifurcation, I only took Plavix for a short time, but 81mg aspirin for the rest of my life. The Plavix had me bleeding and bruised within a couple of weeks. @oct20 taught us about a blood test they can do for the Plavix! There’s another that one can take, but I forget what it is. I did have to wait for medical science to catch up with me for the type of stent needed, the others wouldn’t have worked. I also wasn’t a good candidate for a craniotomy apparently so she avoided having to do one. But on my third repair attempt, it was a possibility. I cut my hair short and we met with an elder attorney to get our wills updated. The paralegal got the new wills to the Clerk of Courts first thing the morning of that procedure which took a lot of stress off me. We always get our house in order before a procedure, I call it getting my house and House in order.

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Hi Chris
I had craniotomy/clipping for my ruptured Right MCA on October 2022 here in California. I would say recovery is 3 mos after I completed my home therapy then I was able to continue outpatient therapy for another 3 mos.
I also flew short distance Ca to LV last January without any issues.
My neurosurgeon had me do MRA after 3mos then 6mos and my last one 1year! After all Normal results I was actually discharged from their service and just see my PCP. I give thanks to GOD for my healing and the support of my family.

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Listen to your neurosurgeon, but always ask others too.
Use this group and other docs, include a neurologist. Sometimes they know more than the surgeons.

One year after arriving home and recovered I flew to Europe without any issues.
Since thenI have flown several times. It’s a piece of cake. If you’re doc approves and gives his blessings you should be good. Mentally it is a bit nerve racking the first time, but physically it was good. No headaches, no problems at all.
Got to live, go out and do it! :wink:

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Thank you so much for sharing your information. I’m glad that you healed well and are now in the clear!

Thank you for sharing your flying experiences Constance. I appreciate it! I was considering doing the surgery in Turkey and the neuro said I could fly home (12 hour flight) after 2 weeks. It just seemed too soon for such a long flight at that point in recovery. I’ve now decided to do the surgery in the USA so I won’t have to worry about flying so soon after. Thanks again for your info and I’m glad you are out and about getting after life :smile:

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