Can I use Medisave to pay for wisdom tooth extraction?

Wisdom tooth extraction is a common surgical procedure that many young patients must have. If they did not have their wisdom teeth removed when they were younger, older patients might need to have them removed now. The cost of wisdom tooth extraction in Singapore can vary greatly depending on the case’s complexity. Medisave can be used because it is a necessary surgery. There are several Medisave codes for wisdom tooth surgery that are proportionate to the difficulty of the surgery. Let’s look at how Medisave can be used for wisdom tooth extraction in Singapore.

The Table of Surgical Procedures is a document published by the Ministry of Health that lists all Medisave surgical procedures claimable. There are thousands of procedures listed, and each one is assigned a “table” ranging from 1A to 7C, indicating the level of complexity and, thus, the amount of money that can be withdrawn from your Medisave account.

There are ten codes for wisdom tooth surgery, ranging from Table 1B to 4B, with withdrawal amounts ranging from $350 to $2700. These codes are classified into two types:

Single tooth extraction

Six codes describe single-tooth surgery. The lowest code is not assigned a table, implying that no Medisave claims are permitted. This refers to a wisdom tooth that has nearly fully erupted but is covered by a layer of gum. Surgery to remove it consists of making an incision on the overlying gum and elevating the tooth without further surgery. The other codes denote increasing difficulty levels in the surgery; for example, if bone must be removed, the Table will be higher, and if the tooth must be divided before it can be removed, it will be higher again. Finally, the highest code can be used when a wisdom tooth becomes entwined with a nerve in the jaw bone and needs to be separated from the nerve. Overall, the most common procedure for removing an impacted wisdom tooth involves cutting the gum, removing bone, and dividing the tooth, which is a Table 2C with a withdrawal limit of $950.

Multiple tooth extraction

If more than one tooth needs to be extracted simultaneously, the multiple teeth surgery codes must be used. There are codes for 2-3 teeth and for four teeth, with increasing difficulty levels. The difficulty level is determined by whether bone removal or tooth division is required, as with single tooth codes. The two lower wisdom teeth are frequently impacted and require bone removal and tooth division, whereas the upper ones usually have erupted and can be extracted non-surgically. This combination qualifies for the code for 2-3 teeth, a Table 3C, and the Medisave withdrawal limit is $1850.