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Shedding pounds, but gaining...flaps? Nearly 54% of weight-loss warriors face the challenge of excess skin.

After a significant weight loss journey, achieving your goals can leave you feeling proud and empowered. But sometimes, loose skin in the lower abdomen, medically known as a panniculus, can remain. While this doesn't diminish your accomplishment, it can cause discomfort, hygiene issues, and even limit mobility. If you're considering a panniculectomy to enhance your comfort and well-being, understanding the cost is a crucial first step.

What Is the Average Cost of a Panniculectomy?

Panniculectomy procedures can be costly, typically ranging from $9,000 to $17,000. It's worth mentioning that this estimate might not cover extra costs like anesthesia and hospital care, which could make the final bill higher.

What Is Panniculectomy & Why Do You Need It?

A panniculectomy is a surgery that removes the extra skin, known as a pannus, from the lower abdomen. This procedure helps smooth out the area, relieving the discomfort and hygiene issues caused by the excess skin.

You may require a panniculectomy if you recently underwent weight loss surgery and can’t get rid of the excess hanging skin. This extra skin is interfering with routine activities like walking and sitting and is leading to skin rashes and infections.  

Is Tummy Tuck Different From Panniculectomy?

Yes, tummy tuck is different from panniculectomy. It is a surgical procedure performed to enhance the shape of the abdomen by removing the excess skin from it. The procedure is cosmetic and may not be covered by insurance. Here are some more differences:

PanniculectomyTummy Tuck
Avg. Cost $9,000 - $17,000$15,000 - $20,000
PurposeRemove large pannus of skin and fatImprove the appearance of loose skin and abdominal muscles
Who is it for?Individuals with large pannus after weight lossPeople with moderate to severe loose skin and weak muscles
ProcedureRemoval of pannus and tightening of underlying tissuesLiposuction, muscle tightening, excess skin removal, belly button repositioning
RecoveryLonger and more challengingShorter with some discomfort and activity limitations
RisksInfection, bleeding, scarringInfection, bleeding, scarring, muscle tightening complications, nerve damage
Insurance CoverageMay be covered if medically necessaryMay be partially covered

Does Insurance Cover the Cost of a Panniculectomy?

Getting insurance coverage for a panniculectomy can be tricky. It's not impossible, but insurance companies usually need proof that the hanging skin is causing big problems in your daily life.

Here's what you might need to show:

▪️ Pictures: Photos of the pannus can help demonstrate its size and impact.

▪️ Medical Records: Documents showing treatment attempts or how the pannus affects hygiene or movement may be necessary.

Some insurance companies have specific rules. For instance, they might require the pannus to cover the entire pubic area to help cover the surgery costs.

The key is to document how the pannus affects your daily life. Keep a record of any discomfort, hygiene issues, or limitations in movement caused by the pannus.

Insurance providers have different rules, so talk to yours to see what's included in your coverage.

If your insurance covers it, find out how much you'll need to pay yourself. Usually, insurance companies only cover a small part or a fraction of the total cost.

How Does Panniculectomy Cost Vary by Location?

The price of a panniculectomy can vary depending on where you live. In big cities or places where it's more expensive to live, it often costs more. The skill and reputation of the surgeon and the hospital can also change the price. In smaller towns, the procedure might be cheaper. Also, healthcare laws and insurance coverage can affect the cost in different states or countries.

Panniculectomy Cost In The US*

U.S. StatesAverage Cost
Washington, DC$9,392
New Hampshire$8,622
New Jersey$8,881
New Mexico$7,548
New York$8,927
North Carolina$7,511
North Dakota$7,490
Rhode Island$8,347
South Carolina$7,638
South Dakota$7,771
West Virginia$7,845

Estimated Cost of Panniculectomy in Countries Outside the US

CountryCost Range (USD)Considerations
India$9,000 - $15,000Most affordable option, but the quality of care and facilities can vary.
Thailand$12,000 - $18,000Good balance between affordability and quality care, many hospitals cater to medical tourists.
Turkey$10,000 - $17,000Competitive prices with modern medical facilities.
Mexico$13,000 - $20,000A more affordable option for US residents, research surgeon qualifications carefully.
UK$20,000 - $30,000+The high cost is due to higher surgeon fees and overall healthcare costs.

Phase-Wise Breakdown Of Panniculectomy Surgery*

PhaseAverage Cost RangeNotes
Consultation$90 - $150Can vary based on the surgeon's experience and location
Blood tests and imaging$200 - $300Basic blood tests & imaging
Surgeon's fees$3,000 - $12,000The broad range can be higher or lower
Anesthesia fees$500 - $1,000
Hospital facility fees$1,000 - $3,000/dayCan vary significantly based on hospital type
Pain medicationVariesDepends on medication and duration
Compression garment$110 - $225
Follow-up appointments$50 - $100Can vary

*Important Note: This is an approximation and actual costs may differ significantly. Consulting a board-certified plastic surgeon in your area is crucial for the most accurate cost breakdown for your panniculectomy surgery.

Various other factors affecting the price of panniculectomy:

1. The Surgeon’s Expertise

It's crucial to have a skilled surgeon for a panniculectomy. Make sure the surgeon has access to top-notch tools and techniques. A certified surgeon might charge more because of their skills and certifications. Picking an experienced plastic surgeon can lower risks and speed up recovery.

2. Geographical Location

Panniculectomy costs are usually higher in places where more people want the surgery. Also, places where it costs more to live tend to have higher prices than places where it's cheaper to live.

3. Hospital or Surgical Facility Costs

This covers the costs of using the surgery room, tools, and supplies, which can vary based on whether it's done in a hospital or a specialized surgery center.

4. Anesthesia Fees

These fees include the cost of giving anesthesia and monitoring the patient during surgery. The price can change depending on the type of anesthesia used and how long the surgery takes.

5. Prescriptions for Medication

Patients may require medications post-surgery for pain management, infection prevention, and healing support, with costs depending on the type and amount of medication needed.

6. Medical Tests and X-Rays

Pre- and post-operative tests and imaging studies, such as blood tests and X-rays, may be needed to ensure patient health and procedure success, with costs varying based on specific tests and healthcare providers.

Are There Financing Options Available to Cover the Cost of a Panniculectomy?

When considering payment options for a panniculectomy, there are several methods to choose from, each with its advantages and disadvantages:

Out-of-Pocket PaymentCredit CardsMedical Loans
No Interest or Fees: Paying with cash avoids interest charges, making it the most cost-effective option.Convenience: Credit cards offer a quick and easy payment method without the need for immediate funds.Competitive Interest Rates: Medical loans often come with lower interest rates compared to credit cards, making them a more cost-effective option.
Immediate Ownership: You won't have any lingering debt or monthly payments to worry about.Rewards Programs: Some credit cards provide rewards such as cashback or travel points, which can be beneficial.Flexible Repayment Terms: These loans typically offer flexible repayment terms, allowing you to choose a payment plan that fits your financial situation and budget.
Potential Discounts: Some providers may offer discounts for upfront, full payments.Build Credit: Responsible credit card use can help improve your credit score.Quick Access to Funds: Medical loans can provide quick access to the necessary funds, ensuring that you can proceed with your surgery without significant delays.
Large Immediate Expense: It requires a significant amount of money upfront, which might not be feasible for everyone.High Interest Rates: Credit cards often come with high interest rates, increasing the overall cost if the balance is not paid off quickly.Credit Requirements: To qualify for a medical loan, you usually need to have a good credit score.
Impact on Savings: Using cash can deplete savings that could be needed for emergencies or other expenses.Debt Accumulation: It's easy to accumulate debt if you only make minimum payments.Additional Debt: Taking out a medical loan adds to your overall debt burden, which could affect your financial stability and ability to borrow for other needs in the future.
Opportunity Cost: The money used for the procedure could have been invested or used elsewhere for potential financial growth.Credit Limit: You may be limited by your credit card's maximum limit, which might not cover the full cost of the surgery.Additional Charges: Charges such as processing fees, or prepayment penalties, can increase the overall cost of the loan.

Every payment option comes with its advantages and disadvantages. It's important to consider your financial situation and long-term goals when choosing the best method for paying for a panniculectomy.

Panniculectomy Financing With Denefits

To finance your panniculectomy surgery, you can ask the surgeon to provide you with customized payment plans. Here’s how Denefits can assist you:

➡️Easy Monthly Payments

Manage your expenses with personalized payment plans, allowing you to spread costs over time and reduce financial pressure.

➡️Instant Approval Without Credit Checks

With Denefits, most clients receive immediate approval as no credit check is necessary.

➡️Variety of Payment Options

Denefits offers a range of payment plans tailored to fit your financial needs.


A panniculectomy can greatly enhance your comfort and well-being, especially after significant weight loss, but the cost can be a major concern. This guide has provided you with valuable insights into managing the financial aspects of the procedure. We’ve discussed the range of out-of-pocket costs, how to navigate insurance coverage, and explored flexible financing options like Denefits to help make this surgery more affordable.

Remember, a panniculectomy is an important investment in your health and quality of life. By thoughtfully assessing your financial situation, exploring various payment options, and collaborating with your doctor to document medical necessity, you can make a well-informed decision. This can lead to a smoother, more comfortable future. Take the time to consider your options and choose the best path forward for your well-being.


Q1. How Much Is a Panniculectomy?

Out-of-pocket costs for a panniculectomy can vary between $9,000 and $17,000. 

Q2. What Additional Expenses Should I Expect Beyond the Base Cost of a Panniculectomy?

In addition to the main cost of a panniculectomy, you might need to pay for anesthesia, use the hospital facilities, tests before the surgery, care after the surgery, medicines, and deal with any unexpected problems. It's important to talk about these possible costs with your doctor and insurance company to know how much everything will cost.

Q3. Can Insurance Cover a Tummy Tuck?

A tummy tuck is a cosmetic procedure and is medically not necessary. Patients undergo it to remove fat and extra skin from the abdomen. Insurance will not cover it; you can opt for financing with Denefits, which allows you to pay for a tummy tuck through flexible payment plans.

Q4. How to Get a Panniculectomy Covered by Insurance?

For your insurance to cover a panniculectomy, you'll need to work with your doctor to provide detailed documentation, including pre-operative photos and a letter outlining the medical necessity of the procedure.

Q5. How to Get a Tummy Tuck for Free?

Tummy tuck is a cosmetic surgery, so, there is no way to get it free, but, you can opt for financing. To make the procedure more affordable for the patient, many surgeons offer financing as a viable option. You can explore the options available and pay the amount monthly. 

Q6. What About Insurance? Will Insurance Cover a Tummy Tuck?

Here's the good news! Medicare might help with certain surgery expenses. But, if the procedure is purely for cosmetic reasons, chances are the insurance may not cover it. You may have to document your journey via photos and videos to qualify for insurance.