How Much Do Sleep Apnea Treatments Cost?

Health care costs can be difficult to sort out. There is a confusing game that seems to be played between insurance companies and health care providers—and you may be the one stuck with a surprising bill. What does it cost to diagnose and treat sleep apnea? These costs may vary with treatment options, including continuous positive airway pressure (CPAP) therapy, oral appliances, and even surgery.

To provide a greater deal of transparency, let’s review an overview of the costs associated with sleep apnea treatments. Then, for once and all, we may be better able to answer the question: How much do sleep apnea treatments cost?

Planning Ahead With Insurance

In order to avoid an unexpected bill, plan ahead. Review your insurance coverage for the consultation (office visit), testing, and treatment of sleep disorders. It can be helpful to call your insurer directly. If additional information is needed, such as diagnostic or billing codes, it can be helpful to speak with your sleep specialist’s billing team. It is possible to get a firm number prior to being seen, tested, or treated. If you can’t get a straight answer, ask to speak to a supervisor: persistence pays off.

Keep in mind that you may have copays (the amount you pay for a visit or test at the time of service) or a deductible (the amount that you have to pay before the insurance begins to pick up more of the tab). The coverage for durable medical equipment (DME)—the supplies you need to treat your condition—may vary based on your insurer’s policies. Many insurance policies will cover 80 to 90 percent of DME costs. Equipment may be purchased up front or leased over a term (often 10 to 13 months). Some treatments may be excluded from coverage.

When considering treatment of sleep apnea, you will need a consultation with a board-certified sleep physician and diagnostic testing (with either a home sleep apnea test or in-center polysomnogram), prior to seeking treatment. These expenses may range from hundreds to thousands of dollars, and most insurance will cover some (or all) of these costs. Once it is determined that you need treatment, it becomes possible to consider your options.

Seeking Sleep Apnea Treatment

Selecting the proper treatment for sleep apnea should be done with the guidance of your sleep physician. A skilled practitioner can review your symptoms, physical examination findings, and test results to help you choose the right therapy. This will save you time and money in the long run.

Below is a list of common treatment options for the management of obstructive sleep apnea. As much as possible, the pricing is based on a comprehensive review of current online pricing sources as well as professional experience.

Your costs may vary based on other factors. There may be regional or international differences. The prices that you see charged to your insurer may not reflect what is collected by the DME supplier. Cash payment may be less than what the insurer could be charged. For all questions, review your costs with both your treatment supplier as well as your insurance provider.

CPAP Machine

Replaced every 5 years by insurance.

Insurance may pay 80 to 90 percent of these estimated costs under DME coverage.

  • CPAP without Humidifier: Low-end may be less than $300 with standard models exceeding $400
  • CPAP with Humidifier: $600 to $850 (average $700 to $750)
  • AutoCPAP: Low-end $400 to $500 and higher-end $650 to $900 (average $700 to $850)
  • Travel CPAP: Cash only, not covered by insurance, may range from $500 to $850

Bilevel Machine

More sophisticated models of PAP therapy are more expensive.

  • Bi-level: Low-end models are $875 to $1,000 and many standard models are $1,600 to $2,000
  • ASV: Costs may exceed $3,000 to $4,500

Beyond the initial set up of the device, ongoing supplies are needed to continue PAP therapy. These include:

Replaced every 3 months.

  • Costs vary depending on the style (nasal pillows, nasal mask, full-face mask, hybrid mask): $25 to $175 (most are in the range of $50 to $100)

Mask Cushion

Replaced every 2 to 4 weeks.

  • Costs $10 to $60

Replaced every 3 months.

  • Costs $25 to $60

Standard Tubing

Replaced every 3 months.

  • Costs $5 to $15

Replaced every 6 months.

  • Costs $5 to $10

Disposable Filter

Replaced every 2 to 4 weeks.

  • Costs $1 to $4

Replaced every 6 months.

  • Costs $20 to $40

Not covered by insurance, and may not be necessary.

  • SoClean 2: $319
  • SoClean 2 Go: $219
  • Lumin: $249

Additional Supplies

There may be additional supplies required for treatment, depending on your personal needs. These generally cost less than $20 and may cost as much as $50, and may include:

Oral Appliance

For those with mild to moderate obstructive sleep apnea, an oral appliance may be used for treatment. This may require consultation with a specialty dentist. After the initial visit, there may be the creation of plaster molds, the fabrication costs of the appliance itself, and multiple visits to adjust the settings and ensure optimal response to treatment without side effects. These may need to be replaced at regular intervals, especially after dental work that alters the bite:

  • Mouth guard for bruxism: $400 to $500
  • Oral appliance for sleep apnea: $2,000 to $3,000 (high-end may exceed $10,000)

Inexpensive options available online that are moldable after boiling the plastic in hot water may be obtained for $10 to $100, averaging $40 to $50. If these do not fit well, they can cause tooth movement or loss and problems affecting the temporomandibular joint (popping, clicking, pain, or arthritis). If complications occur, the relatively low initial cost for these boil-and-bite models quickly skyrockets. These cheap models are not recommended for long-term use.

Surgery

It is difficult to determine the averages costs associated with surgery due to multiple variables that are not publicly accessible. A few of the most effective treatments are quite expensive.

As a general rule, the surgery costs associated with placement of the Inspire hypoglossal nerve stimulator may be $30,000 to $40,000 (with the device itself costing about $20,000 of this total).

Jaw surgery, with a high rate of success, may cost $80,000 to $100,000.

More minor nasal surgery (turbinate reduction, nasal septoplasty, etc.) or throat surgery (including tonsillectomy, soft palate surgery, or tongue advancement surgery) would be expected to cost significantly less, but may still run up to $10,000.

Alternatives

There are a number of treatments that may help to modestly improve sleep apnea. The costs with these treatments are relatively low (often less than a few hundred dollars). These additional options include:

Reviewing these options with your sleep medicine provider may be helpful.

Costs of Untreated Sleep Apnea

It may be disheartening to face medical expenses that easily run into the hundreds (or even thousands) of dollars. Consider the effects and symptoms associated with sleep apnea when it is untreated. It may undermine your sleep and affect the quality of your life. This can lead to lost productivity. There can be additional health care costs attributable to the complications, including:

  • Hypertension
  • Diabetes
  • Heart arrhythmias (atrial fibrillation)
  • Heart attack
  • Heart failure
  • Stroke
  • Dementia

Sleepiness associated with the condition may lead to car accidents. Severe sleep apnea may also increase the risk of sudden death. When put in this context, treatment may seem like a bargain.

A Word From Verywell

Cost should not be a barrier to seeking health care. Treatment for sleep disorders is important for your health and well-being. If you have difficulty paying for your medical expenses, speak with your providers about options to reduce the cost for you.

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Article Sources
  • Knauert M, et al. "Clinical consequences and economic costs of untreated obstructive sleep apnea syndrome." World J Otorhinolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2015 Sep; 1(1):17-27. Published online 2015 Sep 8. DOI: 10.1016/j.wjorl.2015.08.001.

  • Oral Appliance Therapy. American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine.

  • Reimbursement Guide. American Academy of Dental Sleep Medicine.