Paying for a Tummy Tuck

Can anyone help me with some ideas for getting a tummy tuck with poor credit and no money? I am a disabled vet and have been treated for back pain since October 9, 1980 when I was in the air force. (They acknowledge my 100% disability status but have not for my back.


I have $2000.00 worth of equity in my house. I can't get a loan from friends or a finance company. My medicare and Veterans medical plan will not pay for it. I have heard of patient volunteers who are given surgery for less money at plastic surgery colleges? What's up with that? I have about 10 lbs of stomach fat that contributes to my pain due to three prior abdominal surgeries and an intentional weight loss of over 100 pounds. Please help.

By culturevulture from Forsyth, MO

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If you have medical insurance and can prove there is a medical need for the surgery, the insurance should pay for it. Example: constant yeast infections or other skin irritations/excoriation. Photograph and document the proof and each time you've visited a physician because of the problem. I know that Blue Cross/Blue Shield will pay for the surgery @ 100%. I have a co-worker that is going in for a full body lift due to bariatric wgt. loss and she is the one I got the info from. Good luck to you.

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Best Answer

I worked in an operating room for years. If you have insurance and the doctor says it's medically nessesary, your insurance should pay for it. The office staff at the surgeons office can assist you with that. You can also ask about the residency program. Residents, not medical students will perform the surgery. The attending doctor (AKA teaching doctor) will be there to assist. If you have surgery at any hospital that is a teaching hospital, usually these are the best of the best, there is a good chance a resident is doing the work and the doctor is there to over look. Good luck!

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Do you think it's a good idea? In L.A., at least, sometimes plastic surgeons advertise for people to work on at a low fee or gratis - but would you be a good candidate? Wouldn't dieting be more advisable in your case?

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I'd google plastic surgery schools or medical schools, plastic surgery department, and tell them your story. I think someone will help you. There is probably one medical school per state, I would think, so do a survey of say 6 states nearby.

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Dear Pamphlila,

A tummy tuck is my last resort. I had had a lot of surgeries and gained over a hundred and sixty pounds over the last seven years.

Since October 2007 I have managed to lose weight through exercise and diet changes. I have gone as far as I am going and need the tuck because my back is still hurting because now I have all of the weight just lying down in the front.

At this point dieting will only help me lose some more weight but you just can't exercise over ten pounds of loose flesh.

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I will be praying for you. I know a lot of people will read and think. There isn't a need for that! It may not be life saving, but it would help your pain, and self esteem. I am hoping someone will be able to help you out. You could also try asking at your doctors if there is a case manager or social worker that could offer you some options.

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When having any type of surgery you want somebody with a lot of experience and board certification. I would not want to be a practice patient for a serious procedure such as this. Too many things could go wrong. I would try the route of getting insurance to pay for it. Start documentation of all doctor visits, get copies of all medical reports and tests. It may take some time, but after enough appeals you should win. Don't give up. In the meantime, you will be building equity in your home and may be able to borrow against it if you have to. My father has an enlarged abdominal area due to a large hernia. He wears a stomach binder for support and it really does help him. That might be an option for you as well.

Sandy from Pittsburgh

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How much is this surgery going to cost without the insurance? Interested because I too need this done. Just haven't yet gotten up the nerve to check into it.

Exercise that may help would not work, as I have collapsed vertebrae and can't seem to do the exercises that would help because of muscle spasms afterward. Thanks. Squirrelna

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Wow. I want to thank everyone for the great advice. It is so nice to hear from such caring people. I am glad that I placed this blog because I was not aware of how to get your insurance to fund that kind of surgery. I also was not aware of blue shield paying for it.I have tried everything and did not want to have another surgery because I have had so many surgeries and procedures (Only one elective though).

To those who say diet; I have that is why I need the surgery. I've lost over 100 pounds and the hanging stomach flesh is keeping me from exercising and walking without a considerable amount of pain. I appreciate everyone's help.

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Health & Beauty AdviceJune 18, 2009
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