One question I’m asked frequently (after the inevitable “What happened to your arm?”) is this: “How much does a prosthetic hand cost?” Let’s put it this way – you know when people facetiously claim that something crazy-expensive costs an arm and a leg? Well, that’s pretty accurate. And while I’m not entirely sure how much a leg costs, I can assure you that an artificial hand is a big investment. A Myoelectric arm prosthesis (the kind that lets you open and close the hand) will set you back upwards of $20,000. And the cosmetic hand (read: the one that’s just for show) is not too far behind.
To put this information in perspective, here’s a list of things that my artificial hand most likely costs more than:
1) A car –
Unless you’re driving a Beamer (or something of equal or higher value), chances are good that my robotic limb is more expensive.
2) Breast implants –
I’m not saying I would get them, but I totally could… Let’s just say, I could look like Heidi Montag right now if I’d pursued this route.
3) A year of college –
According to CollegeData.com, a year at an out-of-state public college will set you back $22,203 on average. And if you decide to attend a public university in your state, my arm could pay for about two years. Crazy, huh?
4) A year’s worth of rent –
Maybe this wouldn’t be so helpful if you’re living in (extremely overpriced) NYC, but you could definitely get a pretty decent apartment anywhere else.
5) A Louis Vuitton bag –
Actually, depending on which bags you pick, you could probably afford a whole designer wardrobe.
6) A small wedding –
Granted, it wouldn’t be a Kim Kardashian/Kris Humphries affair, but this sum of money could buy a girl with simple tastes her Pinterest dream wedding.
7) A year abroad –
You know that gap year some kids take between high school and college? My prosthetic could fund that in full and may even last you a few years after that.
8) Diamonds –
Who cares about having an artificial fourth limb when diamonds are a girl’s best friend?
9) Laptops for the whole family –
And I’m talking good laptops, something like the MacBook Air.
10) A year’s worth of concerts and music festivals –
Concert tickets for big-name artists can get pretty expensive. With what it costs to buy my fake hand, you could probably even follow one of them on their next tour (that’s what? 20 concerts across the globe? With front-row seats?).
So the next time I casually say that I would “give my left arm” for something on this list, know that I am most likely actually considering it….