The very roots of medical tourism can be traced to ancient times, when travelers set off for distant lands in search of healing mineral springs and cures for whatever ailment afflicted them. Modern medical tourists book flights, but the goal of the search remains the same: relief and healing. Today those journeys are often motivated by the lure of reasonably priced options that may be unavailable at home.
Known for pine-scented forests and deep, dazzling lakes, the Baltic country of Lithuania holds claim to an ever- increasing number of visitors traveling abroad in search of affordable, high- standard medical treatments. Lithuania holds particular attraction for travelers seeking cosmetic procedures, with a focus on laser teeth whitening, rhinoplasty and breast augmentation and reduction surgeries.
Cost savings estimates for some of these procedures are significant: The average savings for a rhinoplasty can be as much as 72 to 84 percent, while a standard breast augmentation, which averages $9,162–10,995 in a U.S. hospital, runs around $3,337–3,742 in Lithuania.
Along with cosmetic procedures, Lithuania has also become a respected destination for infertility treatments, organ transplants, cataract surgery, joint replacement, dental implant procedures, anti- aging programs and cancer/oncological treatments. Currently, three of the country’s major hospital facilities are fully accredited by the Joint Commission International. These are the private JSC Northway, SK Impeks Medicinos Diagnostikos Centras and UAB Kardiolita, all located in Vilnius.
In addition, numerous modern private hospitals and clinics boast highly trained medical teams that specialize in specific health needs — and you’ll find more than 300 health and wellness spas where you can enjoy a leisurely recuperation before you begin the trek home.
Along with a wide range of massage therapies and soothing mineral steam baths, Spa Hotel Vilnius offers sauna cabins and water treatments, along with a selection of cosmetic surgery options, gastroenterology treatments and a medical staff that includes psychologists and nutritionists.
At some spas, you can take advantage of the therapeutic properties believed to be associated with natural elements including Baltic amber and peat mud. Said to be a powerful immunity enhancer with anti-aging benefits, amber plays a role in saunas, scrubs and reflexology treatments. Try it for yourself at the Amber Palace, located at The Health & Wellness Center Energetikas located along the Baltic Sea in Palanga. The property — which offers medical treatments such as urology; neurology; cardiology; and ear, nose and throat procedures — includes a salt cave and a menu of treatments featuring local herbs, mud and peat.
Things to know before you go: Vilnius Airport, Lithuania’s international gateway, is a 10-hour flight from New York. Entry requirements specify all travelers, medical or otherwise, must have a minimum of three months left on their passports beyond the date of their visit.
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