Every year, thousands of Americans travel to Mexico to engage in what's known as "medical tourism." And Mexico does have a number affordable, high quality, and technologically sophisticated medical facilities - many in new, accredited hospitals throughout the country.
However, the primary draw for Americans to go to Mexico for healthcare is cost. Procedures that cost tens of thousands of dollars in the US usually run for far less than that in Mexico - sometimes 90% less. Since insurance doesn't often cover cosmetic surgery, weight loss procedures, or some dental work, this makes medical tourism an appealing option for Americans looking to save some money.
Mexico also offers a number of experimental therapies for cancer and other debilitating illnesses, but this is a far trickier prospect. Many alternative medicine practitioners go to Mexico to practice because they're not beholden to FDA regulations there. As a result, therapies that offer false hope and extreme risk are often carried out on patients who feel they're on their last chance.As always, consult your doctor and carry out dilligent research before having any of the following procedures done in Mexico.
Weight Loss Surgery
Weight loss surgery in Mexico is popular among US medical tourists primarily because it's much cheaper there, and US insurance often doesn't cover procedures like the Lap Band. Pharma company Allergan was able to release its adjustable gastric banding system in Mexico five years before the FDA approved it in America.
Hospitals and clinics near the border operate on about 100 US patients per month, usually performing gastric sleeve surgery. However, the procedure carries risks, and has drawbacks not found when having the surgery done locally. Consult your doctor.