Should I Have A Tummy Tuck Done At The Same Time As A Hysterectomy?

Q: Dr. Eppley, I was wondering if you do tummy tucks scheduled and coordinated with a hysterectomy. What the cost would be and how much of a cost savings would it be. I am not only looking into having them done at the same time for cost savings (insurance will pay for the hysterectomy but NOT the tummy tuck) but for combining recovery time as well. Can a lower body lift (instead of a tummy tuck) be combined with the hysterectomy? A little info on me.  I am a 40 year old female, about 20 months post op from bariatric surgery. I have lost about 160 to 165 lbs and now weigh about 167 and weight has pretty much stabilized the last 4 to 6 months. I am 5’3″ and happy at the weight I am at now, but the hanging excess skin is really bothering me, in the way, clothes don’t fit right, it gets sweaty under the fold, and it is very uncomfortable. Thank you for you any information you can provide me and for your time.

A: Congratulations on your successful weight loss! Either a tummy tuck or a circumferential body lift can be performed at the same time as a hysterectomy. This is an historically common combined abdominal procedure. Besides the obvious benefit of one single combined recovery, the only key question is how do the economics work out. Since you will be paying out of your pocket for either a tummy tuck or a body lift, the question is what is the OR and anesthesia cost if done in a hospital with the hysterectomy compared to it being done separately in an independent surgery center? (the plastic surgeon’s fee would be the same at either location) Many patients would assume they are similar but that is often mistaken. Either location of the surgery should be priced out so you can see the difference between your fees. If the difference is small, then one should have the body contouring procedure done at the same time as the hysterectomy. But if the difference in significant (thousands of dollars) that may give one pause as to whether it should be done separately. You may ponder as to why there would ever be a difference between the two locations (hospital vs surgery center), the answer is simple….overhead and efficiency.

I will have my assistant calculate those specific costs between the two locations for just one of the procedures (tummy tuck) so we can see how different or similar those costs would be.

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis, Indiana