Financing Options in Plastic Surgery

Q: I am wanting to get liposuction and a tummy tuck and I have learned that it is quite expensive. Do people generally pay cash, out right? What financing options are available?

A:  Elective cosmetic plastic surgery is not inexpensive and many people considering it do require some financial assistance. While the concept of financing plastic surgery was once rare, it is not quite common. I have read estimates that in 2000 the number of patients that financed surgery was 5%. Today that number is closer to 40% and growing. For these patients, financing could be the only means to afford their desired plastic surgery procedures.

Most, if not all, plastic surgeons are very familiar with a patient’s request to finance their surgery. This is an everyday event in any busy plastic surgeon’s practice. While the plastic surgeon’s office can assist and guide you through the financing process, plastic surgeons do not directly loan money for surgery. Nor  do they work out a payment plan so that one can have surgery and then pay out off the plastic surgeon over time.  That requires a financing company or back (not usually the best) to work with you to develop the loan amount, interest, and a repayment schedule. Most plastic surgeons are signed up with financing programs that allow you to directly apply to and get very quick responses.  Like a car or appliance purchase, you need to think about making monthly payments over a given period of time 

There are a large number of companies offering plastic surgery financing. In my Indianapolis plastic surgery practice, we use Care Credit and My Surgery Loans, for example. But there are many other options out there that offer medical loans. Simply google the term ‘plastic surgery finiancing’ and a plethora of them will appear. These medical loans are not necessarily based on the procedure you are considering but on a dollar amount. You can then select the procedure you want to have, and depending on your credit ratings, you could be granted different interest terms.

When considering financing plastic surgery, there are three (and potentially four) costs that you need to be aware of. These include the surgeon’s fee, operating room charges, the anesthesiologist’s fee (if general anesthesia is used), and implant charges. (if some form of an implant is being used) Make sure you know all of the fees that will be required of your procedure so you don’t inadvertently get a loan that is not adequate. Your plastic surgeon should give you an estimate (quote) for all the costs of your procedure. Get a consultation and written quote before you ever finance. Do not take the estimated costs off of a website or some verbal exchange.

 Lastly, like all financial and legal documents,  double check the agreement terms, interest rates and re-payment time before signing at the dotted line.

Dr. Barry Eppley