Barium enemas

Medicare Part B (Medical Insurance) covers this test once every 48 months if you’re age 45 or older when your doctor uses it instead of a flexible sigmoidoscopy or colonoscopy. If you're at high risk for colorectal cancer and are age 45 or older, Medicare covers this test once every 24 months.

Your costs in Original Medicare

You pay 20% of the Medicare-Approved Amount for your doctor’s services. In a hospital outpatient setting, you also pay the hospital a copayment. The Part B deductible doesn’t apply.


To find out how much your test, item, or service will cost, talk to your doctor or health care provider. The specific amount you’ll owe may depend on several things, like:

  • Other insurance you may have
  • How much your doctor charges
  • If your doctor accepts assignment
  • The type of facility
  • Where you get your test, item, or service


Your doctor or other health care provider may recommend you get services more often than Medicare covers. Or, they may recommend services that Medicare doesn’t cover. If this happens, you may have to pay some or all of the costs. Ask questions so you understand why your doctor is recommending certain services and if, or how much, Medicare will pay for them.

What it is

An X-ray exam that can detect changes or abnormalities in your large intestine (colon).