How Much Is A Tummy Tuck?
The cost of a tummy tuck will vary according to the clinic and surgeon chosen and the extent of the work that is needed to achieve your desired results. Typical procedures start from around £7,000.
It is still currently possible to receive tummy tuck procedures for free via the NHS under certain extreme conditions, for example when there is excess skin left over following a dramatic weight loss that is seriously affecting your mental or physical health. The first step in seeking a tummy tuck on the NHS, like any cosmetic procedure, is to speak to your GP who will assess your eligibility and refer you to a plastic surgeon.
What Is A Full Tummy Tuck?
Watch Mr David Floyd, Consultant Plastic Surgeon at the Royal Free Hospital, explain what a full Tummy Tuck procedure entails:
"A full tummy tuck usually involves removal of a large lip of skin below the umbilicus, leaving a neat scar in the bikini line and then when we’ve removed that we stitch the muscles back together which flattens out the abdominal wall and gives a nice flat solid tummy again that the women don’t have to spend the whole day holding their tummy in because actually it’s tightened up.
With a combination of the muscle tightening stitch or the muscle repair as it’s called for the rectus Diverification, together with the removal of the excess skin and tightening of the skin is a full tummy tuck.
If patients also have an umbilical hernia then I would normally fix that at the same time."
Mr David Floyd, Consultant Plastic Surgeon at the Royal Free Hospital
Types Of Tummy Tuck
There are three primary types of tummy tuck – a mini, standard and extended procedure.
However, depending on the circumstances, the surgeon may also choose to perform a circumferential or reverse tummy tuck. Which procedure is carried out will be down to the surgeon, and will depend on a number of factors, such as how much excess fat and skin needs to be removed and where from. During a standard tummy tuck (sometimes called a traditional procedure), an incision is made along the pubic line from hip to hip and around the navel to enable fat from the general abdominal region to be removed. During a mini-tummy tuck, excessive fat in the lower abdominal area is removed through a smaller, shorter incision line with no incision made around the navel at all. The extended technique targets a large amount of overall fat from the abdomen, along with the flanks and lower back.
A circumferential tummy tuck is a large-scale operation that removes even more fat than the extended method. When carrying out this procedure, the surgeon will make an incision around the body that extends along the waistline from the abdomen to the lower back and buttocks. If you have undergone significant weight loss or bariatric surgery, this can be used to remove the excess skin that can accumulate. Lastly, a reverse tummy tuck removes excess skin from the upper abdominal area through an incision made below the breasts (an inframammary incision).
The Procedure And Recovery
A tummy tuck procedure is carried out under a general anaesthetic, and depending on the method chosen, can take anywhere from an hour and a half to three hours to complete.
The surgeon will create the incision and remove the necessary excess fat and skin, before closing the wound with sutures. These stitches are normally not dissolvable and will need to be removed in the week following surgery, along with any drainage tubes that have been inserted to deal with any accumulation of fluid. After the procedure, you will be given a support garment to wear in the weeks following to help with the swelling, discomfort and pain.
It can take up to six weeks to make a full recovery from a tummy tuck, with most patients returning to work four weeks after surgery, but this recovery time will depend on a number of different factors. It is normal to experience a degree of pain in the week immediately after the surgery, and this can be managed with over-the-counter pain medicine as needed. In roughly 10 to 20 days after surgery, you will be able to start resuming light activities and eventually return to your everyday routine. However, you should refrain from vigorous activity for at least six weeks post-operation.
What Affects The Price Of A Tummy Tuck?
The cost of a tummy tuck can vary dramatically, depending on numerous factors, including:
- The clinic and surgeon chosen for the procedure.
- The amount of excess fat to be removed.
- Whether you have any risk factors for complications during surgery.
Can I Get Cheap Tummy Tuck Surgery?
Tummy tuck procedures can cost upwards of £7,000, so it is understandable that you will be looking for the best price available for your procedure. However, as with all cosmetic surgeries, it is important to research the reputation and success rate of a surgeon or clinic as well as their prices.
Whilst most reputable clinics will provide you with a price that covers all aspects of your surgery, some may charge extra for certain aspects of your care in order to advertise a seemingly bargain price. It is therefore really important to find out exactly what is included in the price when enquiring about a tummy tuck procedure, for example you should be sure to ask whether your price includes aftercare, recovery support and follow-up appointments. In addition be sure to check whether there is a time-limit on the included aftercare, or if there is a limit on the number of times you can be seen afterwards before you begin being charged.
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Financing Tummy Tuck Surgery
The high cost of a tummy tuck means that many patients wish to spread the cost of their procedure. To accommodate this, most clinics offer finance packages to help you pay for your procedure As the packages available can vary greatly between clinics, it is important to be thoroughly aware of the final price of your tummy tuck and what is included. Some of the payment options are detailed below:
Most clinics provide the option to pay for your tummy tuck procedure monthly, with many offering a 0% APR option, which means that the total paid back at the end of your payment plan is only the original cost of the procedure, with no added interest. Alternatively (and your options may depend on your credit rating) some providers do charge interest on a pay monthly plan. An example of the difference interest makes to your payment is shown below:
As well as researching the clinic and your surgeon, it is also really important to fully understand the finance packages offered by your clinic. It is quite often the case that lower repayments over a longer period of time mean you pay more in total for your tummy tuck procedure.
|£7,000 at 0% APR over 2 years = £291.66 per month||Total Repaid = £7,000|
|£7,000 at 9% APR over 2 years = £344.17 per month||Total Repaid = £8,260|
|£7,000 at 9% APR over 4 years = £198.33 per month||Total Repaid = £9,520|
Buy Now Pay Later
Some clinics also offer a "buy now pay later" option, where you will be given an initial payment free period, usually 12 months. After this initial period you can then either pay the amount owed in full, or spread the costs out in a monthly payment arrangement. If you choose to pay monthly, most clinics will charge interest, which will affect the amount you pay in total for your procedure.
Are Tummy Tucks Available On The NHS?
Generally no. Although there are a few instances where it is possible, when health risks are involved. It is best to speak with your GP for further advice.
Tummy Tucks Abroad
Alongside breast surgery, tummy tucks are one of the most popular surgeries people travel abroad for. The reason for this is largely due to the lower cost. For example in Belgium or the Czech Republic, the price for a tummy tuck can start from around £1,200 upwards.
When calculating how much you are likely to save, you must remember to factor in the cost of your travel to the clinic, accommodation and food for the duration of your visit. As well as this, you will need to purchase specialist insurance which covers medical treatment abroad.
The Benefits Of A Tummy Tuck
In addition to improving the physical look of your body, tummy tuck procedures come with numerous other benefits, including:
- Motivation to maintain a healthy weight and lifestyle
- Increased personal confidence and thus improved mental well being
- Possible improvement in appetite-regulating hormones and thus a secondary reduction in your appetite
- Reduced occurrence of infection under folds of excess skin