Jan
2012

Cost of Bariatric Surgery: How Much Does Weight Loss Surgery Cost?

Weight loss surgery, or bariatric surgery, can be a fairly expensive procedure with an average price ranging from $20,000 to $35,000+. LAP-BAND surgery is slightly less expensive than the typical gastric bypass procedure, with the average price ranging from $17,000 to $30,000+.

However, there are a number of other costs involved with this procedure. Not only do the surgeon’s fees and hospital fees vary by location of the bariatric surgery center, but some patients require follow up procedures such as liposuction, skin tightening procedures and nutritional counseling services to maintain their results.
 

General Costs of Gastric Bypass and Gastric Banding Surgery

The average cost of gastric bypass surgery ranges from $20,000 to $35,000 surgery depending on the location of the hospital and follow up appointments involved. Other costs that are factored into the final price include:
  • Hospital facility fee
  • Surgeon’s fees
  • X-ray fees
  • Pre-operative lab fees
  • Exercise and diet counseling fees
  • Body contouring surgeries (post-op)
The cost of bariatric surgery varies significantly by region. Weight loss surgery is generally more expensive at bariatric surgery clinics on the East Coast and in major metropolitan cities around the United States. The central and southern states typically boast lower than average overall costs for bariatric surgery.
 

Additional Procedure Costs After Bariatric Surgery

Many patients require a significant amount of surgery after they have finished losing weight with their procedure. Plastic surgery procedures such as liposuction and tummy tucks are typically required to enhance the results of weight loss and give the patient a smooth, sculpted and contoured appearance. Patients who lose a significant amount of weight from their weight loss surgery are also good candidates for skin tightening and body contouring procedures that help to further sculpt and tone the body. Popular procedures after bariatric surgery and their costs include:
  • Breast Lift ($5,000 - $10,000+)
  • Liposuction ($7,000-$14,000+)
  • Breast Augmentation ($5,000-$8,000+)
  • Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty) ($6,000-$9,000+)
Follow up procedures after weight loss surgery typically aren’t covered by insurance so the patient will be responsible for paying out of pocket or finding a financing plan that will cover the costs of their procedure.
 

Insurance Coverage Options to Cover the Cost of Weight Loss Surgery

Many people who have been diagnosed with chronic morbid obesity do qualify for insurance coverage to manage the costs of bariatric surgery. Health insurance providers such as Medicaid and other insurance companies will require the patient to undergo a thorough examination and ensure that the surgery is a “medical necessity”. In some cases – and with the appropriate documentation -- the insurance company can also cover the costs of drug therapy, counseling and dietary programs associated with the procedure. The bariatric surgeon typically has to follow certain guidelines and file paperwork for the insurance company to create a strong case for your weight loss surgery.
 
Learn more about bariatric surgery in our information guide, or consult with a bariatric surgeon in your area to find out if your insurance provider will cover some of the costs of weight loss surgery, and what type of payment plans may be available to finance your procedure.
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