If you suffer from leaking bladder accidents when you cough or laugh or sneeze, or if you have the urge of going to the bathroom all the time, you are not alone. Millions of people across all ages, both genders and all races are affected by this common problem that is termed urinary incontinence (UI), a loss of bladder control. The good news is that the underlying medical condition causing urinary incontinence is almost always treatable and today it is possible to get affordable treatment overseas through medical tourism.

URINARY INCONTINENCE TYPES AND TREATMENTS
Though urinary incontinence can be classified into several types, its three main types are: stress, urge and overflow.
Stress incontinence occurs during certain activities like coughing, sneezing, laughing, or exercise, and is most commonly caused by weak pelvic floor muscles.

Urge incontinence or overactive incontinence involves a sudden urge to urinate followed by instant bladder contraction and involuntary loss of urine, and occurs regardless of the amount of urine that is in the bladder.

Overflow incontinence is the constant dribbling of urine usually associated with urinating frequently and in small amounts, and may be caused by weak bladder muscles or a blocked urethra.

Depending on the cause, type and severity of urinary incontinence as well as your lifestyle, treatment approaches available to you may include weight loss, exercises, medications, bladder retraining (timed voiding), biofeedback, electrical stimulation, and if all else fails, then surgery.

MEDICAL TOURISM
Medical tourism is the act of traveling from one city to another within your country (domestic medical tourism) or to another country by crossing international borders (overseas medical tourism) to obtain medical care that is either not available or not affordable at your local provider. The popularity of medical tourism is largely due to the availability of high quality care at a highly discounted price.

Healthcare providers participating in medical tourism boast of modern facilities with state-of-the-art equipments and technologies, and surgeons who are trained or educated in the US or Europe – all this at a cost that’s 60% to 90% cheaper compared to typical US hospital rates.

SURGICAL TREATMENT OF INCONTINENCE ABROAD
Several procedures are offered abroad for the surgical treatment of all types of incontinence – stress, urge, overflow, mixed, etc.

For curing stress incontinence in women, sling procedures such as Tension-free transvaginal (TVT) sling, Transobturator tape (TOT) sling and Mini-sling procedure are available overseas. Another type of procedure for stress incontinence treatment offered abroad is bladder neck suspension procedure which includes Marshall-Marchetti-Krantz procedure (MMK procedure) or a variant of it called Burch procedure.

To treat severe urge incontinence, procedures offered overseas include augmentation cystoplasty or a newer procedure called sacral nerve stimulation.

For the treatment of urinary incontinence in men, some of the procedures available abroad include artificial urinary sphincter, male sling, and urinary diversion.

MEDICAL TOURISM DESTINATIONS FOR INCONTINENCE SURGERY
Some of the most popular countries that patients from the United States travel to for urinary incontinence procedures are Mexico, India, Singapore and Thailand.

Apart from the considerably lower cost of surgery, Mexico is preferred for another obvious reason – its close proximity to the United States. This means shorter travel times and more convenience for the medical tourist.

Singapore‘s high quality of care along with the large concentration of internationally accredited hospitals in the country play a major role in its demand in the medical tourism market for incontinence surgery. Furthermore, English being the official language of the country makes communication with your international provider easy.

But, if you want the best value for your money then India is the answer. The medical tourism hotspot offers prices on procedures that are unbeatable. For instance, a TVT or a TOT procedure, inclusive of the hospital charges and the doctor’s fees, costs approximately USD2,500*.

Also note that urinary incontinence surgery abroad typically involves a 2-3 day stay at the hospital followed by a 3-6 day of recuperation or rehab at a nearby hotel before returning home.

So, if an incontinence surgery is what your local doctor has recommended and treatment abroad is what you wish to seek, then get your local doctor’s report along with any and all reports of diagnostic tests and then call upon a reputed medical tourism company such as Healthbase for a consultation with an overseas incontinence specialist of your choice.

*Note: The price mentioned is for rough planning purposes only. The actual price charged may vary based on your specific medical condition, the provider chosen, currency fluctuations or for any other reason. Transportation, hotel accommodation and food are not included in the price.

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If you are suffering from chronic disabling neck or lower back pain and have been diagnosed with degenerative disc disease then artificial disc replacement might offer a surgical solution to curing your debilitating pain. And if you do not have health coverage to pay for this procedure, then surgery abroad might be an option for you.

WHAT IS ARTIFICIAL DISC REPLACEMENT?

The Internet is loaded with information on this subject so we are not going to go deep into explaining what it is and what kind of problems it can solve. If you were to ask one of our spine surgeons on the Healthbase website , however, then you would find out whether or not ADR is a good option for you. Until then here is a gist of the main points related to the surgery.

degenerative disc disease Artificial disc replacement or ADR is a treatment for patients with severe degenerative disc disease (DDD) which is a condition that can occur in the neck or low back and cause significant pain. ADR or artificial disc replacement surgery removes the affected spinal disc (the cushion that separates your spinal bones or vertebrae and helps protect your spinal column) and replaces it with artificial parts. It’s much like a hip replacement or a knee replacement surgery that replaces the worn out parts with prosthetic implants. The disk replacement surgery which is normally done through the abdomen aims to give flexibility and normal motion to the diseased spinal segment.

If the surgery is being done to treat neck pain and associated problems then it is called a cervical artificial disc replacement surgery. If, on the other hand, the surgery is to treat problems in the lower back, it is called lumbar artificial disc replacement surgery.

So that’s that about ADR for now.

GETTING THE ARTIFICIAL DISC REPLACEMENT SURGERY

What is important next is where to get this surgery. We think we might be able to shed some light on that part and how to do so without going broke. Affordable artificial disc replacement spine surgery is possible due to what is known as medical tourism . If you are one of the more than 47 million uninsured Americans, have a chronic disabling back pain and are a candidate for ADR surgery then you really want to continue reading.

Today’s patient is a global patient. You possibly know someone who has gone to another city or country for medical or dental care. Until recently, the types of care sought abroad have been limited to such treatments as cheap dental implants in Mexico or a face lift in Brazil . But that has changed over the last five years or so. Shopping for major medical care overseas has become a norm these days.

Yet, hopping on a flight abroad is probably the last thing you would want to do if you were suffering from chronic back pain. However, if doing so relieved you of your spinal problems without much affecting your bank balance, you might not find it as abhorrent an idea. Just for comparison purposes, expect to pay only about 20% to 40% of US hospital rates.

We do not need to delve into how the quality of care offered overseas is state-of-the-art, and is tried and tested as you can read all about that on the Healthbase website. But it is safe to keep in mind that just like in the US, there are good and not-so-good quality hospitals and doctors abroad as well. Here are a few suggestions for you if you were considering the medical tourism path of healing.

Outside of the United States, countries boasting some of the top spine centers in the world are India, Spain, Mexico, Costa Rica, Singapore and Turkey. Some of the more well-known spine hospitals in these countries are Apollo Hospitals, Fortis Healthcare (Wockhardt Hospitals), Barcelona Spine Center, Hospital Clinica Biblica, Parkway Hospitals, Anadolu Medical Center, etc.

IN CONCLUSION

Here are 5 things you must know about ADR surgery:
1. It is a treatment for degenerative disc disease of the spine and is an alternative to spinal fusion surgery.
2. Lumbar disc replacement is more challenging to perform than cervical ADR.
3. If cost is a concern, then you should consider medical tourism as a practical solution to cost-effective spine surgeries.
4. Some of the top spine hospitals in the world are in India, Spain, Mexico, Costa Rica, Singapore and Turkey.
5. If medical tourism seems like an uncharted territory to you, you wish to save time and you do not want to end up in a mediocre facility then engage the services of a specialized medical travel facilitator like Healthbase that can connect you with an overseas provider while also extending several other valuable concierge services.

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If you have heard of medical tourism then you know it is the phenomenon that can buy you top-notch medical care at rock bottom prices with virtually zero waiting times. And you are probably also aware that India is one of the most popular medical travel destinations. What is great about India is you can get not only high quality care for low price but also certain unique treatments that not many other nations in the world offer, especially if you also factor in the unbeatable price. In the article below we talk about hip resurfacing surgery in India – a unique medical breakthrough technique for the treatment of hip pathology.

THE NEED FOR HIP RESURFACING
Your hip is a ball and socket joint. Both the ball and socket are covered by a protective layer of cartilage which makes the joint smooth and hip movements swift.

Any condition that damages this cartilage leads to pain, dysfunction and eventually arthritis. Injury, infection, rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis and bone dysplasias are some reasons that can cause damage to this cartilage thereby necessitating a hip resurfacing surgery.

Traditionally, such issues have been addressed by a total hip replacement (THR) which is a surgery to replace the hip joint by a prosthetic implant. A THR removes part of your healthy bone so the implant can be fixed deeply into the femoral bone. Patients also have certain movement restrictions following a THR surgery.

By contrast, resurfacing, which is a less invasive bone-preserving technology, replaces only the worn, diseased and damaged surfaces of the hip joint, and places an all-metal “ball and socket” implant in the hip joint. Resurfacing allows return to normal and sporting activities post-surgery, reduces the risk of dislocation and makes revision easy (if at all needed).

These reasons make hip resurfacing more favourable over hip replacement in certain specific cases. The anatomy and bio-mechanics after resurfacing mimic a normal hip very closely making it an ideal choice for young or more active patients with non-inflammatory degenerative hip joint disease.

HOW IS A HIP RESURFACING SURGERY PERFORMED?

Birmingham hip resurfacing implant

Birmingham hip resurfacing implant (Image source: Smith & Nephew)


After separating the femur or thigh bone from the hip socket, your surgeon reshapes the head of the femur. Next, the diseased bone and cartilage are removed from the hip socket.

Then, the implant, which comprises of two parts – the metal shell component for the hip socket, and the metal ball component with a short stem for the thigh bone, is placed.

First, the metal shell implant is firmly pressed onto the hip socket. After this the surgeon drills a hole in the femur (so the stem of the femur implant can be fitted into it), fills the metal ball component with bone cement, and fits the ball on top of the thigh bone with its stem into the drilled hole.

Finally, the femur with its new metal head and the hip socket with its new metal shell are put together to form a new resurfaced ball and socket hip joint that looks and functions like a normal hip.

HIP RESUFACING SURGERY AND INDIA
In India, hip surgeons have been practicing the hip resurfacing procedure for over a decade while orthopaedic surgeons in most of the rest of the world are still new to this procedure.

In the United States, for instance, where this procedure is still not commonly performed, FDA approved the first hip resurfacing system only in 2006. It is no wonder then that surgeons in India are much more experienced in this procedure than their counterparts in America.

Today, the majority of hip resurfacing operations are performed in India on Indian as well as foreign patients. Each year thousands of hip resurfacing medical tourists from all across the globe head to India to not only be in safe hands but also enjoy a tremendous amount of savings.

You can find top hip resurfacing hospitals in India that are Joint Commission International (JCI) accredited. Additionally, several of the best Indian orthopaedic doctors are also either educated or trained internationally.

Taj Mahal, India

Taj Mahal, India

Hip resurfacing costs about USD8000 in India . This is so less compared to what U.S. hospitals charge for the same kind of service and quality that you can bring a companion along, spend on sightseeing and still save thousands of dollars.

OVERSEAS PATIENT TO INDIA FOR HIP RESURFACING
Richard, who hails from California, USA, had been suffering from osteoarthritis in his hips for a long time but was unable to get surgery in the United States, earlier because of unavailability of the procedure in the country and later because of the extravagant price tag it came at.

Facilitated by Healthbase, Richard had both his hips resurfaced through bilateral hip resurfacing surgery at Wockhardt Hospitals (now Fortis Hospital) in Mumbai, India, 3 years ago.

Richard after his surgery in India

Richard after his surgery in India (Image source: Healthbase Online Inc., http://www.healthbase.com)

Being an avid sportsperson that he was, barely 12 weeks after his hip surgeries, Richard returned to snorkelling in the sunny Southern Californian beaches. In the past, Richard had problems walking from his car to his front door.

MEDICAL TRAVEL TIPS FOR HIP RESURFACING PATIENTS
Here are the top 5 things every medical tourist needs to do or remember for a successful medical travel trip:

  1. Verify the credentials of the foreign doctor treating you.
  2. Don’t let cost be the driving factor; focus on quality.
  3. Keep your local doctor in the loop.
  4. Don’t keep your trip too short; allow time for recuperation as well as sightseeing.
  5. Engage the services of a medical travel facilitator like Healthbase. These are specialized medical travel agents that connect you with the hospital of your choice while providing all or some other valuable concierge services like detailed information about various procedures, detailed hospital profiles and surgeon profiles, medical records transfer, free surgery quote, pre- and post-consultation with the overseas hospital, feedback and testimonials from previous patients, medical and dental loan financing, passport and visa acquisition, airport pick-up and drop-off, hospital escort, tickets, travel insurance, hotel booking, sightseeing services in the destination country, etc.

Medical tourism, which is the practice of traveling from one place to another for medical care, is no longer limited to patients seeking conventional treatments such as hip resurfacing, spine fusion, knee replacement, heart bypass, lap band, cosmetic surgeries, or dental treatments. Today, many are going overseas to seek “unconventional” medical tourism treatments such as those for cancer.

Cancer patients may be driven abroad by low prices but what remains the prime motivator is the easy accessibility to the latest technology at overseas cancer hospitals.

COMPARING THE US AND ABROAD
Without a doubt USA is the pioneer of the latest medical technologies and the country invests heavily in cancer researches. Such developments have provided remedies for previously irremediable diseases, thereby prolonging and improving the lives of the critically ill. However, these advancements remain beyond the means of those who lack health insurance, simply because of the price tag at which they come, in the US anyway.

But, in India or Singapore or Turkey, for instance, not only are the same state-of-the-art technologies being used, the treatments are offered at a much lesser price making them accessible to a greater part of the populace. It is not uncommon, therefore, to see surgeons in Asia working behind the gamma knife or the CyberKnife or the da Vinci robotic surgical system, treating patients from all over the world and offering their services at a much discounted rate as compared with US rates.

COMMON CANCERS AND THEIR TREATMENTS OVERSEAS
Cancer hospitals abroad treat all types of cancers. Though most types of cancers are suitable for overseas treatment, a patient’s candidacy can only be decided on an individual basis. The more common ones that patients go abroad to cure are prostate cancer, breast cancer and thyroid cancer.

There are several types of cancer therapies available today. Some of them are: surgery, radiotherapy (RT), chemotherapy, palliative therapy, etc. The specific treatment plan designed by the foreign doctor will depend on: (1) the type of cancer, (2) its stage, (3) whether it has metastasized to other parts of the body, (4) the patient’s overall physical health, and so on. The doctor may decide to give a combination of various types of therapies to increase the effectiveness of the treatment.

Following are some examples of cancer treatments given abroad to remove the cancer from the body and to treat the symptoms of the disease:
(1) Surgical resection of the affected organ followed by radiotherapy or chemotherapy to remove any remaining cancer cells.
(2) Depending on distant metastases state and the pathology report, the doctor might use palliative or aggressive radiation therapy.
(3) A high dose IMRT of primary and lymph nodes (LNs).

ISSUES WITH SEEKING CANCER TREATMENT ABROAD
As is well known, the quality of care offered abroad is on par with what is available in the United States. So the treatment quality is not a concern. But what might be of concern is the duration of the treatment.

When you go overseas for a surgery such as a hip resurfacing or a heart surgery, you usually need to spend no more than 2 to 3 weeks in the host country. That’s true for most of the procedures you seek abroad. But in the case of cancer treatment, the duration of the treatment is a big concern. The treatment plan that the oncologist or the doctor designs can run over a period of several months. This means longer stays for the international patient and his companion which in turn translates to higher expenditure on accommodation. To resolve this and to generate more savings, Healthbase recommends seeking long-term accommodation in service apartments instead of hotels as the former cost much less.

Even with higher expenses on accommodation factored into the cost, the resulting savings on treating cancer abroad can amount to approximately 40-80% when compared with the cost of treatment in the United States. For an accurate cost estimate and arrangement of cancer treatment abroad, check out the Healthbase website.

A doctor told FOX 2’s Chris Edwards he needed a common medical screening – colonoscopy – which he could have done at dozens of places around Metro Detroit for about $7,000.

Instead, he chose to have it done thousands of miles from home with help from Healthbase, a medical tourism agency that offered a Cost Rica medical travel package that included a colonoscopy, extensive dental work, and some fun activities as part of recuperation.

The colonoscopy procedure itself cost him only $350.

Check out the report by Fox 2’s Deena Centofanti, who tagged along with Chris for a coverage of his experience of Costa Rica’s health care services.

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Healthbase, the leading US-based medical tourism provider, has partnered with a JCI accredited German hospital in order to bring wider options and greater convenience to Americans, Canadians, Europeans and others looking for affordable, timely and high quality medical and dental treatments.

Healthbase Online Inc., the leading and award-winning medical tourism facilitator based in Boston, MA, has announced partnership with a Joint Commission International accredited hospital in Germany. With the addition of this JCI accredited hospital, Healthbase now has a network of over 100 health care and dental care providers spread across 18 countries. For the medical tourist it means more choices, wider variety and greater convenience.

According to Saroja Mohanasundaram, CEO of Healthbase, “With growing demands from our consumer base for a quality tertiary medical care center in Europe, we are excited to have our newest Germany-based healthcare provider onboard. Our new member provider is JCI-accredited thereby giving the peace of mind to our patients regarding the high standards of quality that will be delivered by it. Our German provider offers a full complement of services and is an excellent choice for patients looking for orthopedic, spinal and bariatric treatments at a much discounted rate compared to USA and much faster access to service compared to that offered by public health care systems in Canada or the UK.”

For patients from Europe, especially from the European Union (EU), this would be as good as going to a local hospital with the advantage of high or higher standard of service and without the inconvenience of the infamous waitlists as seen in government-sponsored healthcare systems such as the National Health Service or NHS in the United Kingdom.

The hospital offers procedures like joint replacement procedures (such as hip replacement surgery and knee replacement surgery), spinal procedures (such as spine fusion surgery and artificial disc replacement surgery), and weight-loss procedures (such as lap band surgery, gastric bypass or RNY procedure and gastric sleeve surgery), among hundreds of other procedures.

The favorable geographical location of Germany means that for patients coming from North America the flight times are shorter compared to other famous medical tourism destinations such as those in Asia. For those traveling from other European countries it is at a stone’s throw.

Mohanasundaram adds, “We have carefully chosen our German provider after a rigorous selection process keeping in mind all aspects of affordable, safe and top quality medical tourism care. Patients can expect as much as 50 to 70% less cost compared to the cost of care in other developed countries such as the United States. Also, the staffs at our German provider speak English, thus, making communication easy.”

Healthbase has the biggest and geographically most expanded network of healthcare and dental care providers in the industry. Patients have a wide selection of destinations to choose from for their low cost high quality medical care and dental care needs. These include Germany, India, Thailand, Singapore, South Korea, Malaysia, Philippines, New Zealand, Jordan, Turkey, Hungary, Belgium, Spain, Costa Rica, Panama, Brazil, Mexico, and USA.

Healthbase serves the American, Canadian, European, African, Asian, Middle-Eastern and Asia Pacific markets, and offers more than 200 procedures.

About Healthbase Online Inc.:
Healthbase, an award-winning US-based medical tourism and dental tourism facilitator, is a one-stop source for global medical and dental choices, connecting patients to leading internationally accredited healthcare providers in 18 countries including India, Thailand, Singapore, South Korea, Turkey, Germany, Panama, Costa Rica, Mexico and USA. Healthbase caters to individual consumers, self-funded businesses, insurers, benefits plan consultants, third party administrators and those using Consumer Directed Healthcare Plans (CDHPs) or voluntary benefit plans. Healthbase coordinates over 200 procedures in various categories like orthopedic, spinal, cardiac, bariatric, urology, oncology, dental, cosmetic and general surgery. Some of the common procedures offered are Birmingham hip resurfacing, total hip replacement, knee replacement, ACL repair, rotator cuff surgery, spinal fusion, spinal disk replacement, heart bypass surgery, lap band, gastric bypass, cancer treatment, liposuction, dental implants, crowns, bridges, etc. for a fraction of the cost in the US with equal or superior outcomes. To ensure that patients receive the best care possible, Healthbase works mainly with hospitals that have international accreditations like JCI. To learn more, call 1-888-691-4584, email info.hb @ healthbase.com or visit http://www.healthbase.com.

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Whether you are 18 years old or 74 years old, living with a bad set of teeth is like going through a living hell. But, thanks to the miracles of modern dentistry, now dental patients can turn their horrible experiences into life-changing ones – and that too at an affordable price.

Examples of some commonly sought dental treatments include:

  • dental crowns – examples, porcelain fused to metal or PFM, full porcelain, etc.
  • full dentures
  • partial dentures – upper partial dentures and lower partial dentures
  • root canals
  • dental bridges
  • dental implants
  • etc.

These dental works can be done as individual treatments or be part of a complete makeover.

See below for before and after photos of some of Healthbase dental patients from the US whom we assisted to get their dental treatment overseas in Costa Rica at an affordable price.

Below are before and after pictures of Claude V, a 74-year old dental patient from Florida. He had extensive dental work done in Costa Rica, facilitated by Healthbase
Before dental treatment in Costa Rica

Claude, after his dental treatment in Costa Rica

Following are before and after photos of an 18-year old dental patient from Texas who had a complete makeover with 24 porcelain crowns in Costa Rica, coordinated by Healthbase

Before his dental work in Costa Rica

After his dental work in Costa Rica

For more information about affordable medical and dental treatments in the United States or abroad, check out medical tourism and dental tourism.


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