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Will Insurance Pay for Liposuction?

Will insurance pay for lipo if obesity is causing medical problems and depression and who is the most successful and most known doctor to do the operation?

Doctor Answers 10

Liposuction paid for with insurance

You will have to consult your insurance provider to find out if your liposuction is covered. However, in general, the answer would be no. 

There are several prominent and reputable plastic surgeons who perform liposuction, but the most important is that you go with the surgeon that you have good rapport with and can trust. 

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Will insurance pay for liposuction?

Hello! Thank you for your question! Surgical procedures for aesthetic purposes, to improve appearance, are not covered by insurance. Typically, these as well as complications resulting from such procedures are the responsibility of the patient. Procedures that are meant to correct functional issues and those which cause health-related issues should be covered by your insurance as a medical necessity, with proper examination and documentation. Some insurance plans have exclusion criteria for certain procedures. Also, it is an obligation of the surgeon not to attempt to authorize purely cosmetic procedures through insurance.  Liposuction is not a covered benefit.

Discuss your issues and complaints with a board-certified plastic surgeon to discuss these as well as to examine and assist you in deciding which procedure(s) will be the best for you. A discussion of the advantages and disadvantages will take place along with the risks and benefits. Insurance companies will vary on coverage and is always reasonable to discuss your issues with your surgeon and primary care. It would behoove you to get as much information as possible and even call your insurance yourself. Certainly, pay in advance prior to your surgical procedure and options such as financing are available if you qualify. Hope that this helps! Best wishes!

Lewis Albert Andres, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Insurance and Liposuction

No, insurance will not pay for liposuction.  Liposuction is not a weight loss procedure.  It is primarily for sculpting small areas that are resistant to weight loss and considered "figure faults".  It is considered purely cosmetic.

Jeffrey W. Hall, MD
Austin Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 15 reviews

In the Majority of Cases, Insurance Companies Don't Cover Liposuction Expenses

In the vast majority of cases, insurance companies don’t cover expenses associated with liposuction. Although there are always exceptions to the rule, they tend to view this procedure as strictly cosmetic.

Insurance carriers require documentation of medical necessity before covering any surgical procedure. They would argue that weight loss associated with liposuction is minimal and there are far better options including medical weight loss programs and bariatric surgical procedures. In addition, insurance companies are not likely to approve liposuction for mental health benefits. The psychological benefits of this type of procedure are difficult to document. For these reasons, the vast majority of liposuction cases are cosmetic and not covered by insurance.

If you’re considering liposuction, it’s important to understand that in most cases, it won’t be covered by insurance. Make sure you consult with a board certified plastic surgeon with experience in this area. Also, keep in mind that if weight loss is your primary goal, there may be options that are far better for you and they may be covered by your insurance carrier.


We live in a society where insurance companies are publicly held companies that have to answer to share holders. They don't care at all about health, only about business. So liposuction is a cosmetic procedure and will never be viewed as medically necessary. The insurance company's response will be for the patient to lose weight. Sorry that this is the reality. Wait till nationalized health care is enacted and we will all see how little will be covered.

Medical insurance will not cover liposuction

Unfortunately in most cases liposuction is not "medically necessary" and is not covered by insurance. In selected cases such as to compliment breast reduction, the liposuction is bundled into the procedure when covered by insurance. Liposuction is a cosmetic procedure when used to contour and enhance body shape.

Liposuction also in not an effective treatment for obesity whether covered or not. You will need to look elsewhere for treatment such as an exercise and dietary program available in your area.

Best of luck,


Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

Liposuction is not for you

Liposuction can remove small areas of extra fat when you are not far from an ideal weight. Not much in pounds can be safely removed. You need diet, diet, diet and exercise. Lipo alone will just make you more depressed.

G. Gregory Gallico III, MD
Boston Plastic Surgeon
3.5 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

Liposuction is Cosmetic Surgery - Cosmetic Surgery is not covered by insurance

Liposuction in almost all cases is cosmetic surgery. Occasionally it could be used in some reconstructive cases to defat a flap or to decrease the size of a breast as an adjunct to a reduction.

It is not a treatment for depression. If a patient has clinical depression, they should seek medical attention by a PCP or Psychologist. Liposuction will not cure any medical prooblem. It is for body contouring and not for obesity.

Liposuction is a commonly preformed procedure, but it is best preformed by a trained surgeon.

Walter D. Gracia, MD
Fort Worth Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

Liposuctioning is not a medical treatment

Insurance will not pay for liposuctioning and liposuctioning is really not meant to treat medical obesity. You shoul see a clinic that deals with morbid obesity and discuss what you should do to lose weight and get healthy.

John P. Stratis, MD
Harrisburg Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

No, insurance will not pay.

Liposuction is an elective procedure that is not paid for by insurance. It also does not treat obesity, as the weight change after liposuction is minimal at best if done on an obese person.

Liposuction is not likely to have any effect on serious depression, particularly if the depression is related to a person's weight. The best counsel I can give you is to seek advice from a nutritionist, a doctor that specializes in weight loss, or ask your family doctor for help.

There are many resources and, if the obesity is severe, sometimes bariatric (weight-loss) surgery is an option. Best of luck.

Francisco Canales, MD
Santa Rosa Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

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.