The cost of skin removal surgery

The cost of skin removal surgery? Skin removal surgery is scheduled for November. Since the post where I announced my decision to have skin removal surgery, I’ve been asked a lot about the cost of surgery.

I’ve been hesitant to share. Not because I think you’ll judge me but because me sharing my answer won’t be valuable to you… even though you think it will. I actually think sharing may do a disservice to some in that they may shy away at even considering it because of the cost.

In the bluntest of definitions, it is plastic surgery. An elective. The only way most insurance companies cover it is, in my own words, if you have so much skin it actual effects your quality of life in a physically debilitating way. Mine is more of an annoyance vs actually physically a “problem.”

If you are considering it even 10%, I highly recommend you go talk to someone yourself
and not compare your possible cost to what mine costs.

Consider skin removal surgery similar to the purchase of a car. There are SO many variables that it really is up to what a person wants & how much skin they are removing (not how much it weights but how many different places on the body), where they go, what region of the country they are in, and the doctor.

The estimated cost of what I’m having done is in the middle of that range because I’ll be having it on 2 separate days which means paying 2x for anesthesia, OR equipment, etc. It is on 2 days because it is too much to have all on the same day.

A possible change in plans: I haven’t discussed this with my doctor yet but I may have a change of plans in terms of the procedures. Here is what my current surgeries will correct:

  • Underarms
  • Breasts
  • Stomach
  • Back

Ok, So, How Much Does Skin Removal Surgery Cost? 

A car can cost anywhere from $2,000 to $50,000 and so can skin removal surgery, depending on the variables. Here’s a decent estimate of cost that I found online:

“Lower, upper, and mid body lift procedures generally cost between $5,000 to $8,000, while a full body lift typically costs $10,000 to $17,000 and can range up to $50,000 depending on the extent of treatment.”

*Related: Skin surgery, Farewell to Skin Part 1

According to I currently have my surgeries scheduled for this November to take advantage of the holiday time off from work. However the tornado may have caused a dent in that plan because of finances. While we have insurance & are lucky in that the insurance will cover everything tornado related, there are two HUGE areas which are an indirect result of the tornado that are not covered:

Guest Bedroom: When the contractors were replacing the ceiling in the master bedroom, they found rain dripping in the house – when they peeled back the layers, they found rotting wood. Since water drips down, they asked if they could open up one of the walls in the guest room right under the bedroom. Sure enough, they found the entire two corner walls rotted through – rotting that has been happening for 15+ years… so not tornado related but exposed because of the work being done to fix tornado damage. Fixing this is pretty extensive.

Basement/Landscaping: When the contractors redid the roof, they had to take down our gutters. With no gutters, every time it rained, more and more water puddled in our basement exposing what was a small problem before but now a HUGE problem. We also found out there is a leak in our outside water faucet so every time it is turned on, it drips inside the basement wall and into the basement.

So now we need to regrade the outside as well as fix the leak in the pipe located in the cement wall. While we are at it, we are going to finish off the basement and make it a finished wide open space because we anticipate some of Carlos’ family staying with us around wedding time next year.

Because of these two unexpected expenses as well as a wedding to begin planning for August 2012, the decision to have skin removal surgery has come under consideration. Carlos and I have been talking about it and we may end up deciding to do half the surgery… but which half? The arms/chest or the stomach/belt lift?

Isn’t that just life, huh? We make plans, appointments, budgets, schedules and just when we think we’ve got it all figured out, some a tornado rips through disrupting everything you had so carefully planned.

I think I’m going to make another consultation w/ Dr. Gervais and talk through some things.

9 thoughts on “The cost of skin removal surgery

  1. Patricia

    I like this blog, but I’m not going to lie…I felt like the title of the blog was misleading. I get that you want a title that will grab readers but pulling a bait and switch, making it seem like you will discuss the cost of surgery and then not doing it is the fastest way to alienate your readers and lose eyeballs. Anyone who is at the stage of considering skin removal surgery knows that prices vary wildly depending on where you have it done and by whom. However, it still helps to understand individual, specific cases when making your own decisions. No one has ever made a better decision with less information rather than more. If you don’t want to share the cost…then don’t. Using a a title like “The cost of….” and then talking about everything but… including things that have no relevance to anyone else’s life feels very disingenuous. Really disappointing from bloggers who are purporting to to be lighting the way for the millions of other people on this journey.

  2. Laura A

    I disagree with Patricia. While I understand where she is coming from, I think you did address the cost… you said it was somewhere in the middle of $2,000 and 50,000, which would lead us to assume it is probably costing in the $25,000 range. All it took was some simple math to decide, which I think is better than you coming out and saying your expenses. Personally, I don’t think its anyones business how much money you spend. It is your life and your decision, and while I understand that people want to know… it will still be different for everyone, so your expense should not affect them.

    I hope this wasn’t too forward of me, being my first post. I just want to let you know that I recently started reading your blog and I find it extremely inspirational. I myself am trying to lose weight, though my story is quite different than yours. It really helps to know that other people struggle as much as I do.

    Also, if you are looking for some advice on which surgery to get… think about what shows in your wedding dress. I’m guessing its the arms? For me, arm fat is one of the hardest things to lose… so I’m guessing its the same for skin. Not really sure though!

  3. Dawn

    I thought about making this a private email but I thought other readers might find what I have to say of use so I will post here. Jen, when I first read you were going to have all that done one week apart I was very concerned for your recovery. Since I have had all you mentioned done in 2 surgeries 6 months apart plus thighs I definitely know what recovery is like though of course we all heal differently. I actually had a really great recovery the first surgery (thighs and body lift) (though it still felt like a tough recovery) but the second was much harder (practically a second body lift with vertical stomach cut, breast lift and implants, arm lift and lipo) so my advice would be to break it into two surgeries. I was actually surprised to hear your doctor was willing to do all that in just a weeks time though then I’m sure he would have considered if the first surgery you weren’t recovering as well he would postpone the second one (guessing you might have talked about that anyway). My surgeon has 22 yrs experience and I think he definitely plays on the side of extra cautious when I haven’t always felt he needed to. Anyway, my surgeon recommended not having the breasts and body lift done at the same time he would have been willing to do arms and body lift at the same time. I say do what you think will make you feel the best but of course taking into account your surgeons advice as well. This all is definitely a personal choice between you, your doctor (and Carlos) so I wish you great luck with it all and please email me anytime if you have any questions about anything.

  4. Dawn

    Something else I forgot to talk about was revisions, I wasn’t totally happy with my body lift (or thigh lift for that matter) so he did revisions in the second surgery as well at a much reduced cost. If you have the surgeries so close together you won’t know what your not totally happy with. I don’t know how your surgeon works with revision fees but for me I still had to pay additional operating room costs and anesthesia costs. So I do think having 2 surgeries with some time between them isn’t a bad decision.

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