Body sculpting surgery is a broad term used to describe any procedure that improves the contour of the body—e.g., arm lift, tummy tuck, lower body lift, breast enhancement, and thigh lift.
The aforementioned procedures are also commonly used as a plastic surgery after weight loss in which the goal is to remove the redundant skin, stubborn fat rolls, and tissue laxity with the use of incisions beneath the bikini area and within the natural skin folds so the scars remain hidden.
Dr. Tarick Smaili, one of the leading Beverly Hills plastic surgeons, explains the variables affecting the body sculpting surgery cost.
- Type of procedure. “Isolated” procedures such as tummy tuck, upper arm lift, and breast-related surgery typically cost between $6,000 and $9,000, while full body lift or multiple procedures can range from $15,000 to $30,000, depending on the extensiveness of the “makeover.”
Despite the hefty fee, several studies have shown that plastic surgery after weight loss help patients stick to their healthier lifestyle to maintain their new contour.
Nowadays, insurance companies are becoming more and more restrictive that plastic surgery after weight loss is rarely covered, even though it can improve the patient’s quality of life.
As of this writing, only the panniculectomy is labeled as a reconstructive surgery and thus covered by health insurance. This involves removing just the apron-like skin in the abdominal area, without tightening the deeper muscle that also contributes to the saggy appearance.
- Location. The demand for plastic surgery in metropolitan regions is higher compared to less populated areas, thus city dwellers may have to pay premium. It all boils down to the supply and demand.
However, renowned doctors (e.g., Beverly Hills plastic surgeons) typically choose to practice their craft in large cities so it is not uncommon for patients from “more remote” areas to travel long distances for surgical enhancements.
- Hospital versus accredited outpatient surgery center. While a hospital privilege shows that a certain plastic surgeon has been thoroughly screened, having one’s procedure in an ambulatory surgical facility can slightly lower the overall cost.
Aside from the lower fees, outpatient surgery centers might also reduce the risk of contamination because they do not handle infectious diseases unlike most hospitals.
- Doctor’s fee. Plastic surgeons with impressive qualifications, good reputation, and extensive experience generally demand higher fees than someone who is still new in his craft.
Nevertheless, it is not uncommon for non-specialists (i.e., doctors practicing plastic surgery despite the lack of certifications and training) to ask for hefty fees to create an illusion of “exclusivity.” For this reason, a prudent patient should always conduct a thorough background check.