Here & Abroad
Before going for the tummy tuck procedure it is advisable to review the overall cost of procedure not only just for the procedure but also for the associated cost involved with it. The total cost of the procedure varies from person to person. The cost of the procedure alone depends mainly on three things: the surgeon’s fee, anesthesia fee and the facility fee where the procedure will be performed. Surgeon’s fee is usually the largest portion and can vary dramatically depending on the extent of the procedure, the expertise of the surgeon, and how much demand there is for a particular surgeon. Tummy tuck procedures alone costs from $3,000 to $10,000.
People usually look at the cost of the procedure as the total cost and overlook some of the associated costs involved with the procedure. There may also additional lab work and medical tests required. Post-surgery medication and follow-up care should also be considered. If there are post-operative complications, it is likely that those will be denied by health insurance carriers.
Perhaps it makes more financial sense to have your tummy tuck procedure performed abroad. Some countries even have cosmetic surgery clinics setup as “spa resorts”, where the surgery is performed, and then the patient can recover in a resort setting in privacy along with medical attention. Thus you tell your coworkers you are going on an extended vacation (and in some sense you are) and when you return you have a trim new body and some much-needed relaxation.
A survey conducted by Treatment Abroad PriceWatch 2008, which tracks medical tourism procedure prices, determined that abdominoplasty or tummy tuck procedures could be much less expensive than UK or US clinics. For example, the cost of the procedure in Brazil was as much as 78 % less than a comparable procedure in the United Kingdom. Incidentally, medical insurances routinely cover cosmetic plastic surgeries of all types in Brazil and may explain why the cost of this medical tourism destination is so reasonable.
Before you go abroad for a tummy tuck or any surgical procedure, it is extremely important to do research about facilities and surgeons in other countries. Look for the number of procedures that a surgeon has performed and their complication rate. Seek out testimonials from people who have been treated there and find out the training, licensure, and certification required in a given jurisdiction. The level of medical education varies throughout the world as does the stringency of the requirements to practice medicine and surgery. While costs of some surgical procedures can be less expensive abroad, consider that you might just get what you are paying for! Knowing the facts and risks of tummy tuck surgery ahead of time both here and abroad can allow you to make the right decision for you.
The Cost of “Tummy Tuck” Surgery
Because it is not covered by medical insurance, at least in the United States, the cost is a major determinant of whether or not you will have a tummy tuck procedure. The cost of the procedure varies from $3,000 and $10,000 and does not look at your insurance company to cover the cost. The overall cost depends on the type of procedure that you want and the degree of change in your current body contour that you want to achieve. The cost also varies a lot depends on the geographic location; it varies among different countries and even between different localities within the same country. The facility where the procedure will be performed also affects the cost.
The procedure is usually not covered under the medical insurance because a “tummy tuck” or abdominoplasty is almost always considered elective surgery. A tummy tuck is usually purely cosmetic meaning that the patient desires to have the procedure so that their body will look more visually appealing. Cosmetic surgeries are often not medically necessary unless the surgery is to correct a gross abnormality. In many cases, patients simply want to get rid of a small amount of body fat around the belly for aesthetic reasons. Therefore most health insurance providers will not cover the procedure. In fact, if there are complications that occur from the surgery itself, many insurance providers will deny any hospital aftercare that is required to bring you back to health. Moreover, some insurance companies may raise your risk profile after you have received an elective surgery like a tummy tuck.
The caliber of the surgeon will play a critical role in the overall price you will have to pay for the procedure. Factors such as reputation, experience, and skill level will allow the surgeon to charge a higher fee, as the demand for their services increases. Also, location makes a big difference. Since there are more cosmetic surgeries in major metropolitan areas such as Los Angeles and New York, demand for available surgeons can be greater, again, raising the cost.
Make sure to ask if there are other associated costs such as anesthesia and the anesthesiologist’s fee as well as laboratory studies and medical tests. If the surgery is carried out in a hospital rather than a surgeon’s private surgical suite, there is usually a facility or operating room fee as well. Treatment for post-operative complications can increase the overall cost of the procedure. Follow-up care during recovery from the tummy tuck procedure can add to the cost and also consider post-surgery pain medications, antibiotics, and wound dressings.
When considering a tummy tuck, it is imperative to carefully review all the available options and costs. Some costs are obvious such as the surgeon’s fee, while others might not be, as an increase in health insurance premiums.