Cadwell's luck changed when a pilot read the Inquirer's February story about her experience and was moved to write a check that will more than cover the cost of the surgery.
Keith Morgan wanted a pelvic MRI to get to the bottom of pain that had dogged him for decades. His insurance plan approved the scan through one doctor, but denied coverage through another.
Bette Popiel shopped around for the best cash price for a breast MRI and got a bill for thousands more, showing how even the savviest of health-care consumers struggle to navigate the system.
Judy Politzer had a colonoscopy without anesthesia - then got a bill that included anesthesia.
Health care is one of the few commodities that defies the normal rules of supply and demand, largely because few people know what they actually are paying.
Jan Cadwell had hoped to pay for her $3,000 cataract surgery in monthly installments. Her eye doctor wanted $1,575 up front.
Those plans have made people more sensitive to health-care prices, but it's not easy to find out in advance what a procedure will cost.
The shroud of mystery around health care costs has hidden from many consumers the fact that prices vary widely, even for relatively straightforward services such as an MRI.
Have an interesting story about trying to find out how much a medical procedure will cost? We want to talk to you!