Tummy Tucks and Gallbladder Surgery. Can I Get It All Covered by Insurance?

I recently discovered I have gallstones and wanted to know is there a way to get a tummy tuck and the stones removed/gallbladder removed and all be covered under health insurance?

Doctor Answers 6

Combing Gall Bladder Removal and Tummy Tuck Surgery

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Tummy tuck surgery is not going to be covered by insurance whether it is combined with a medical procedure or not. You will also need to consider whether gall bladder removal and tummy tuck surgery should be done at the same time. There are numerous issues to consider other than just convenience of two combined operations, particularly the risk of complications. I would tell my patients that the two would not be done together. 

A tummy tuck is an elective plastic surgery procedure and is not covered by insurance.

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A tummy tuck is an elective plastic surgery procedure and is not covered by insurance.  If you have trouble with gall stones, then having your gall bladder removed is usually covered by insurance.

Tummy Tuck and Insurance

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Insurance will not cover a tummy tuck whether combined with a covered procedure or not.  Aside from the financial considerations, you must also consider the medical issues raised by combining procedures.  Assuming your gallbladder would be removed through a laparascope and small incisions, your general surgeon will need to inflate your abdomen to be able to see adequately.  You need to discuss with your doctors how this might affect your plastic surgeon's ability to flatten your tummy.  In addition, if there is any infection in your gallbladder it may not be appropriate to combine this with a tummy tuck.  Finally, if you were to have any complications from the gallbladder procedure could this affect your plastic surgery?  Make sure you discuss the implications of combining procedures beyond the financial issues.

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Cosmetic surgery and gallbladder

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The insurance plan you have might cover the gallbladder part of the cost, but not the abdominoplasty part. Therefore you will not save much. The worst case would be that your insurance company might not cover any part of either procedure, or delay payment to your general surgeon to get additional information. In any case, no plastic surgeon is going to ask an insurance company to pay for cosmetic surgery. You will likely have to pay for the abdominoplasty ahead of time.

Victor Au, MD (retired)
Chapel Hill Plastic Surgeon

Sorry, insurance just will not cover tummy tuck

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It may be possible to have a tummy tuck at a reduced rate if combined with another procedure such as gallbladder surgery, however insurance just will not cover a tummy tuck.

Insurance Coverage

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Insurance will not cover an abdominoplasty, no matter what other insurance procedures are combined with it. 

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.