The cost of a medical wig for cancer patients will surely vary a lot. While you can get a basic wig made of synthetic hair for as little as $30, higher-quality ones can cost around $400. Meanwhile, wigs made of human hair can cost around $2,000 or more. A good number of health plans cater to some or all the cost of a medical wig.
Hair loss is a side effect of cancer treatment, and health insurance is known to see to the treatment for those side effects. You should consider asking your insurance company if you have coverage for “cranial prosthesis” or “hair prosthesis” for cancer treatment-related hair loss.
In addition, you may also have to forward your insurance company the receipt for the wig after you must have bought it upfront. A good number of wig shops will file the insurance claim for you and not request that you pay upfront. Also, consider calling shops around your area or contact online wig retailers to see who provides this benefit.
However, if you don’t have insurance coverage for a wig or can barely afford the out-of-pocket cost of purchasing a wig, some charities also offer wigs for adults who live with cancer. You can consult your social worker, church, support group, or local chapter of the American Cancer Support for advice and direction.
Factors that Affects the Cost of a Medical Wig
Just like it was noted above, the cost of medical wigs varies based on factors like hair type, cap style, and cap features. Here is a more detailed look at different features that can affect the cost of a medical wig:
Wigs are made from a wide range of different materials.
- Human hair remains the most sought after when it comes to wigs in general. Note that this is the most expensive type of hair owing to its limited supply. Howbeit, human hair wigs tend to need more maintenance like steady use of heat tools and styling products to do away with frizzing. Also note that there are numerous qualities of human hair, each with varying price tags. For instance, Remy human hairs tend to be more costly than non-Remy human hair.
- Synthetic hairs are quite cheap when compared to human hair and are also the easiest to maintain. Note that you can also choose heat-friendly synthetic hairs, which come with the extra advantage of no frizz coupled with the ability to modify your style using heat tools. However, just like with human hair, there are various qualities of synthetic hair available, and this will surely influence the price of the wig.
- Also, note that hair length can also play a crucial role in the cost of a medical wig (especially if it is a human hair wig). Have it in mind that the longer the hair, the more expensive it might be.
Also, note that the wig cap and its features can also influence the cost of a medical wig. According to reports, the most basic cap types (classic and open caps) tend to be less expensive since they are most often machine-made. Monofilament, hand-tied, and lace front caps all influence the overall cost of a medical wig as they feature hand-made elements.
- Monofilament top wigs tend to be partially hand-tied and can create the look of hair growing from the scalp.
- Double monofilament wigs are almost the same as monofilament wigs but tend to be softer and gentler against the scalp.
- Lace front wigs are known to offer a realistic look with the appearance of hair growing from the hairline.
- Hand-tied caps are quite expensive especially since they offer the look of natural hair growth, and they allow the wearer to adjust their hair part and enjoy a comfortable, flexible fit.
According to reports, hair loss greatly affects the self-confidence of patients during and after cancer treatment. While not often covered by original Medicare, wigs are a hair-replacement option that may be seen to be medically necessary and covered as a cranial prosthesis or as durable medical equipment by a Medicare Advantage plan or private insurer.
However, people are advised to always consider their budgets and which type of wig they require before looking at wigs to purchase. While you can always find a good wig to meet your personal needs at an affordable price, don’t forget that you get what you pay for!