Combined Hernia Repair and Abdominalplasty-hospital Wants $80,000, Is This Outrageous? (photo)

I'm scheduled to have a ventral hernia repair combined with abdominalplasty next week. This may not happen after all because the plastic surgeons office want $80,000 for their procedure because it's taking place in the hospital (this is what they were told by patient services). Insurance is covering the hernia repair. Does this sound familiar to anyone? I was prepared to pay some out of pocket costs, but not this much. I'm in the Sacramento, CA area.

Doctor Answers 17

Report this doctor to the state medical society!

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Rarely do I advocate reporting to a state medical board, and even more rarely considering a lawyer, but as ALL of my colleagues have stated, this is WAY out of line and should be treated as such. There are too many ethical ABPS-certified plastic surgeons in your area for this to be even considered; go see several in consultation, and cancel surgery with this doctor--even if there is a cancellation fee. Best wishes! Please let us know how this all turns out. Dr. Tholen

Minneapolis Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 262 reviews

$80,000, Is This Outrageous?

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The hospital at which I have operating privileges charges so much that I believe no surgeon has done a cash pay cosmetic case there is four years.

If we did this at my pricey hospital, and if I take away the insurance part of the case, for which they would not ask you to pre-pay, and allow 2 added hours for the TT, and allow a generous $10,000 for the surgeon, and if I asked you to pay all in advance, that would come to less than a fourth of what you are being asked to pay. At a surgicenter, it would be considerably less still.

I am wondering what the outcome was for you. Best wishes.

Jourdan Gottlieb, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon

Combined Hernia Repair and Abdominalplasty-hospital Wants $80,000, Is This Outrageous?

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That price does sound outrageous.  I think you need to get some other opinions.  I used to do combined hernia repairs and tummy tucks out our hospital, but they did away with their cosmetic private pay discount to patients and so now they are being charged very high fees similar to what the hospital would charge insurance companies.  That would run on the order of $5000 per hour for the use of the operating room.  Although the hernia repair and the mesh used would be billed to insurance, and any portion of the OR time and anesthesia time allotted to the hernia repair billed to insurance, it certainly makes it much more expensive for any cosmetic procedure performed at the hospital.  Now we do these combined procedures in our state-certified ASC (ambulatory surgery center), and a general surgeon works with us to perform the hernia repair, and it is much more cost-effective for our patients.  I would suggest you look into whether there are other plastic surgeons (certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery) who can offer a better alternative, perhaps in an in-office or free-standing ASC.

Abdominoplasty w/mesh reinforcement ventral herniorrhaphy

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Yes, this is OUTRAGEOUS!!!!!!  Most plastic surgeons are trained in general surgery and capable of doing the hernia repair at the time of the abdominoplasty.  I practice in Houston, Texas and the going cost for an abdominoplasty with ventral hernia repair with mesh is $6,900.  This includes the hospital fee, anesthesia fee and physician fee.  There has been a recent article published describing the combined technique.

Best of Luck,

Gary Horndeski, M.D.

Gary M. Horndeski, MD
Texas Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 229 reviews

Do not tolerate this kind of quote from the hospital

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Thank you for your question. This is exactly why many surgeons choose to perform surgery at accredited ambulatory surgery facilities. As long as you are not being admitted you can consider this. If it must be done at a hospital, ask your surgeon if he/she operates at any other hospital and get another quote. Also, ask directly for cosmetic pricing.  No one in there right mind would turn over $80,000 to a hospital as a deposit for this type of procedure. I hope this helps. Good luck.

J. Jason Wendel, MD, FACS
Nashville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 214 reviews

$80,000 tummy tuck and hernia repair?

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The simplest thing to do is to seek another opinion. We all hear about the ($100 aspirin tablet the hospital charges). The hospital charges can be outrageous and without knowing the circumstances its hard to make an educated comment. I dont know how big the hernia is; if there is an anticipation of overnight or multiple nights stay in the hospital; is there mesh involved, etc..  I recommend you seek another opinion to gain more perspective.

Costs of Combined Tummy Tuck and Hernia Repair

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As you have correctly surmised, those fees are beyond outrageous. They are way out of line with reasonable charges that are done by plastic surgeons just about anywhere in the United States. You need to seek out other opinions in which the surgery would be performed in a non-hospital affiliated surgery center to get a more realistic assessment of normal charges for this operation.

$80,000 is outrageous

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 A fee of $80,000 sounds like what would be billed for the combined procedures, not just the cosmetic portion.

I agree with other; your out of pocket expense should be closer to $8000 or less.  Check with the hospital directly to find out their fees and then check back with your plastic surgeon.  You may need to switch hospitals or doctors.

Michael S. Hopkins, MD (retired)
Albuquerque Plastic Surgeon

Combined Hernia Repair and Abdominalplasty-hospital Wants $80,000, Is This Outrageous? (photo)

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I knew I should have set up practice in Sacramento instead of Scottsdale!!!! No, this does not sound anywhere near "right"...And this was just for the Plastic Surgeon???? Time to either re-group with another surgeon or go back in for another explanation but this doesn't make sense...

John J. Corey, MD
Phoenix Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 47 reviews


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If the proposed surgery for you is done as out-patient it should not cost more than $ 8,000.00. However if onr night hospitalization was necessary and no complications occured, the total cost for this type of surgery in Minneapolis would not exceed $ 15,000.00. Of course surgical expenses may vary from one stste to the other, but $ 80,000.00 is definitely out of line.

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.