$12,000 to Remove Sagging Skin After Massive Weight Loss
- Asked by prophet469 in Houston
- 4 years ago
I was huge, and lost a bunch of weight. All of the fat would not go away, and I got this sagging gut out front. I went to a doctor in Sugarland, Texas. He told me he could remove the sagging skin, and Liposuction the flanks and chest. Because of the large pockets of skin and fat, the doctor said that I would have to have this done at the hospital. Total cost would be around $12,000, $4,000 for the hospital. Is that too high?
Pricing for surgery
Your first concern should be that you are comfortable with your surgeon's experience with this type of surgery. The cost is within the normal range - please consider that doing it in a hospital setting is more expensive than doing it in someone's office but safety should be your top priority (it sounds like your surgeon is trying to be safe).
Web reference: http://www.poustiplasticsurgery.com/weightloss.htm
Mid-range, but compare carefully
When patients are looking at post-extreme weight loss plastic surgery, be careful to compare the same procedures between doctors. Skin removal alone may not give you the appearance you want. Get a few opinions and then proceed once you have a good idea of the options, benefits and risks.
Check your insurance
If your weight loss was following bariatric (weight loss) surgery some of the skin removal, as well as, some of the hospital/anesthesia costs may be covered by insurance. Hospital based surgery is significantly more expensive than office based surgery. I'm not sure what "large pockets of skin and fat" has to do with the operative venue. I often perform full abdominoplasty and liposuction in my office operative suite at significantly reduced costs to the patient. For office based surgery $12,000 seems a bit high. Good luck!
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Abdominoplasty and Liposuction Reasonable Costs
Abdominoplasty is usually in the $7-8000 range and liposuction is usually 1500-2000 per area (counting both sides as one area). Since you are having surgery at the hospital their may be about $4000 in additional fees for the OR and anesthesia. Your quoted fee of $14000 sounds very reasonable.
An even better way to check cost is to look up your procedures on RealSelf.com and check the costs in your area.
Always check your surgeons credentials and make sure he is board certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery. Also, ask about his experience with post-bariatric surgery. You would like to hear that it is a common part of his practice.
Cost for Tummy Tuck and Liposuction
You are describing a significant amount of work that needs to be done. With a tummy tuck, and all that liposuction it will probably take about 6 hours to complete the work if turning needs to be done. I've run this through my system and came out with the same result. So yes I think you are right on the money for the surgery about to be performed.
Very Reasonable Price
Actually, $12,000 is very reasonable for a post-bariatric tummy tuck plus liposuction.
- You will pay more for a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon than some guy who is learning plastic surgery on the job after his weekend course. (Unfortunately, these charlatans do exist!)
- You will pay more for an accredited operating room than the back room of an office.
- You will pay more for a hospital than a surgery center. A hospital has additional safety equipment that may be necessary for bariatric patients.
- You will pay more for post-bariatric procedures than "regular" tummy tucks and liposuction. Post-bariatric procedures are a LOT more work.
Ultimately, Prophet469, you should be searching for a high-quality surgeon whom you trust. Of course, you can't neglect price, but this should (ideally) be a secondary issue.
Michael C. Pickart, M.D., F.A.C.S.
Pricing for Tummy Tuck and Liposuction
Pricing will vary depending on the exact procedure you need, the surgeon, and location in the country. Any surgery will include surgeon's fees, facility such as a hospital or surgical center or office surgery suite, anaesthesiologist and any implants if needed - which in your case you would not need any implants. Also, hospitals do not always charge a higher rate. Each individual surgeon will have different facility pricing. Do not choose your surgeon based on price alone. The highest priced surgeon may not always be the best. The lowest priced surgeon is not always the worst - but be wary of why they are the lowest. Definitely compare credentials and reputation first - board certification, hospital privileges in plastic surgery, recommendations from other doctors and your own friends and family. Once you are comparing apples to apples, then see who you like better and fits your personality and understands you the best. Once you have narrowed the list down, then look at pricing. If you pay a bit higher price but have a better result, it is much better in the long run. Those are usually the surgeons that will care for you the best after surgery also. If you get a really low price but never see your surgeon after surgery and only see assistants, that is not worth your investment.
Prices vary greatly, especially in this economy
I would suggest you see multiple surgeons, obtain quotes for the surgeries you are seeking and then compare the quotes from the surgeons you "clicked" with - be sure to compare "apples to apples" - board certified plastic surgeons, board certified anesthesiologist (this is a big one - you may be getting a certified nurse anethetist) and accredited hospitals or surgery centers. Good luck!
Web reference: http://www.hankinsplasticsurgery.com
$12000 for the abdominoplasty and liposuction is reasonable.
Makes sure the quoted fee covers ALL the costs of surgeon, anesthesiologist, OR, etc. The fee quoted is in a reasonable range. Does your insurance cover any of it? Fees vary a lot depending on whee the surgery will be done, so shop around.
Fees vary by hospital and area of the country
You state you lost a lot of weight. Our experience with massive weight loss patients is that the surgery takes longer and the risk of bleeding and other complications is higher than for a patient who is not a weight loss patient. Fees reflect complexity of the surgery and length of surgery. They also reflect the fact that you are more likely to have complications after surgery such as wound infection, wound separation, etc. Your surgeon will need to deal with those complications and the fee reflects that. It always helps to get a second opinion, but cheaper is not necessarily better.
These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.