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Insurance and Plastic Surgery after Massive Weight LossTrillium Plastic Surgery

american society of plastic surgeons Fellow American college of surgeons American Board of Physician Specialties American College of Surgeons The Aesthetic Society American Society for Mass Spectrometry american cleft palate-craniofacial association
american society of plastic surgeons Fellow American college of surgeons American Board of Physician Specialties American College of Surgeons The Aesthetic Society American Society for Mass Spectrometry american cleft palate-craniofacial association american society of plastic surgeons Fellow American college of surgeons American Board of Physician Specialties American College of Surgeons american board of surgery The Aesthetic Society American Society for Mass Spectrometry american cleft palate-craniofacial association

September 3rd, 2013

Two photos of people with extra skin

After losing massive amounts of weight, getting rid of all the extra skin that is the final step in many of my patients' transformation into their "new self". There is a common perception that plastic surgery after massive weight loss is covered by most insurance plans. This article will describe what procedure is - and isn't - typically covered by insurance.

After bariatric surgery, many patients are told that insurance will cover the removal of all that extra skin by their bariatric surgeons, other physicians, or friends. This is true - sort of.

The procedure that insurance covers is what is known as a panniculectomy - removal of the pannus (the large amount of hanging skin on the front of the abdomen). What insurance will not cover is an abdominoplasty or tummy tuck. The question is: what is the difference? Many patients and other physicians think that the two procedures are essentially the same, but they are very different.

A panniculectomy is a procedure that takes about an hour and is usually done on an outpatient basis. It involves removing the excess skin in almost a straight line across the abdomen. In some cases, but not all, the belly button is removed. The waist is not narrowed and there is no "shaping" of the abdomen, waist, or thighs that is peformed. Oftentimes, there is excess skin left in the flanks ("lovehandles") and upper abdomen..

In a tummy tuck or other body contouring procedure (body lift, etc) after massive weight loss, the excess skin is removed and every effort is made to hide the scar in normal clothing. The belly button is preserved and moved and the muscles of the abdomen are shaped. Many times, liposuction is added to help narrow the waist and add definition to the final result. This procedure takes about 3-4 hours, and, like a panniculectomy, is done as outpatient surgery.

So... which surgery is better: a panniculectomy or a tummy tuck?

That depends on your goals. A panniculectomy is a very good operation if your goal is simply to remove the excess skin to allow you to move more easily and eliminate rashes and sores that are sometimes caused by the pannus. If shape and "looking your best" are your goals, then a tummy tuck/body lift may be the choice for you. Those decisions are ones we can make after an in-depth consultation and examination - everyone's bodies are built differently and everyone has different goals for themselves.

In the end, a picture is worth a thousand words. Below are examples of both a panniculectomy and a tummy tuck so you can actually see what the difference is.

Click here to learn more information about tummy tucks


KNOXVILLE, TN

9239 Park W Blvd #202, Knoxville, TN 37923

Complimentary Phone Consultation

Step 1

Schedule a complimentary phone consultation with one of our knowledgeable surgical consultants who are trained by Dr. Jason Hall. They will answer many of your questions, discuss pricing, and happily schedule you an in-person consultation with Dr. Hall if you are a good surgical candidate.

Dr. Jason Hall - Trillium Plastic Surgery Knoxville Tennessee

Dr. Hall's Plastic Surgery Consultant

Complimentary Phone Consultation

15 minute

Phone call

To reserve your in-person consultation with Dr. Hall, you will be charged a $100 consultation fee. Should you decide to move forward with surgery, this fee will be applied to your surgical procedure.

Step 2

Meet with Dr. Jason Hall for your in-person consultation.

Preparations & Surgery Day

Step 3

After you reserve your surgery date, Dr. Hall and his team will make sure you are well informed and prepared for your big day. Preparation is a very important part of your plastic surgery journey.

The post-op phase is an important time of healing and recovering so you can enjoy your amazing results and your improved quality of life that you have envisioned.

Step 4

Enjoy the Results