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What Will It Cost Me To Get Weight Loss Surgery?



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Weight loss surgery? Really? For me? Why?

What’ll it cost me?

Perhaps a better question is “What’ll it cost you if you don’t?”

With today’s uncertain economy and rising healthcare costs, it’s normal to wonder if now is the time to consider the LAP-BAND® AP System.

Extra weight on a person often goes hand in hand with extra financial burden.

Obesity can have significant medical costs over time. Weight loss surgery can help reduce the cumulative cost of living with obesity: like weight loss programs, prescription medicine and hospital visits.

Knowing this, you may want to consider these questions:

  • What are your current out-of-pocket healthcare expenses? Are they due to go up?
  • What are your current prescription and over-the-counter medication costs? Are they due to go up?
  • How many times a year do you see a doctor or specialist? Has that gone up over time?
  • How many days have you missed work over the past few years? Has that gone up?
  • How much have you spent on non-surgical weight loss programs? (WeightWatchers®, Jenny Craig®, etc.) Did that work?
  • How much have your costs for groceries and dining out gone up?
  • How much have you spent on additional clothes due to your weight gain?

Acting now by using the LAP-BAND® System to help you significantly reduce your weight — may also reduce your weight-related costs!

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My out of pocket cost for my surgery was $2000. I saved that much at the grocery store the first year. While I spend a lot on clothes, I always have so that hasn't changed. The change is that I don't have to go to expensive "fat lady" stores ti buy size 10's. I can get them anywhere! Another financial change is my earning potential has gone up. Right or wrong, the fact is that HR directors are more willing to hire someone thin and fit than someone morbidly obese. Even if I hadn't had insurance and had to pay the $20,000+ it would have been a bargain. The benefits far outweigh the expenses. In the long run you'll come out money ahead.

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Being Morbidly Obese cost me 2 Knees. They begin to wear out in my 40's. What I didn't know, was that since they are the shock absorbers for the body, they went out around the same time equally. Not even 6 months after the first knee was totally replaced, the other one was not working right anymore. So, time to replace the other one. $25,000.00 for each knee ! So he made $50,000.00 of me, plus I had to have the Bariatric Surgery, or he would not touch me. The knees would only ware out, and need replacement again.

Do yourself a favor, and save your joints. Yes they can be replaced, but they are Hinges, they only go back and forth. They can't swivel. Your Health is priceless.

Of course there are other expenses, especially cloths, and it seemed that no matter what I spent, I never looked good in anything. So I was for ever shopping for something that would look good. God how I hated that !

I paid $1,000.00 just to keep my Ins. for 1 more month to have the LapBand done. Plus some out of pocket expenses for scrips, and other little things.

But the Band was well worth it. It saved my LIFE !

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Financially...the surgery cost me about $17,000 CAN plus about $1000 in travelling expenses and about 2 weeks off work.

Physically...My blood pressure is now normal (and I won't be needing any meds), my cholesterol is normal (I have been taken off those meds, saving about $100 per month) and I have no risk of diabetes anymore. My knees don't hurt and I am not as tired anymore. I have a lot more energy and walk everywhere. My doctor visits are very pleasant, no more lectures about losing weight and she is very proud of my accomplishments to date. Value...priceless!

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What an inspiration this thread has been. I am scheduled for surgery on March 6th. I am dipping into an inheritance to pay for it, and now trying to find a doctor to order the pre-op testing for me so insurance will at least pick those up. If I have to pay for the pre-op myself I will, but would rather not. Cindy, Shirley, Lorena, thank you so much. I think I will print this out and keep it with me at all times to re-read as needed. lol

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What great inspiration! I am waiting to see if my insurance will approve my procedure.

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These were the questions my husband and I asked ourselves too. Thankfully, our insurance covers the procedure. All we paid for was the co-pays, our tlme and gas to get to all the different offices of the specialst required to see before the procedure. We're very aware of how lucky we are and we're taking advantage of this opportunity. My husband was banded on 3/26 and has done very well and is a great example to me. He admits it's been tough with the cravings but is focused on the goal snd following through with the process. I get banded on 4/16...day 3 on pre-op diet. This thread is a great find and another reminder of how fortunate I am to be experiencing this journey. It's challenging but a challenge I'm going to overcome and be a better and healthier mother and wife for my family! Thank you!

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My out of pocket maximum before the insurance pays 100% is 1,650.00 But the insurance pays for not office visits so I have spent an additional 1,000 getting my pre testing done so around 2600. I will also have to pay out of pocket for all my follow up visits. I think the benefits will be well worth it and compared to the cost of weight watcher or nutrisystem foods hopefully this weight loss will be permanent. I have tons of clothes in all sizes so am looking forward to actually being able to wear them!!

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I would really like to talk to someone who can help me figure out cost. My insurance does NOT cover any wls. I am planning on self pay. I have documented attempts at programs such as weight watchers, plus 10+ years of morbid obesity so I think I'm ok on all those fronts. No one can seem to tell me what to expect to pay. My aunt had the surgery 4 years ago and she paid about 13,000 for hers but even she won't give an exact amount. Because I am self pay I need to know :( and I don't feel I can choose a location or surgeon until I do. Why won't anyone discuss it? I'm already decided to do it, it's just a matter of saving. I'm thinking most about south valley surgical in sandy utah but haven't yet been able to get to one of their seminars, planning to make it to the next one. I've already been to a seminar at two other locations and neither one would give me a cost for self pay.

Anyone have ideas? Also, I heard that wls can be tax deductible, does anyone know for sure if this is true and someone else suggested that I could put up to $5K on my flex spending if I elected it before the year started (say I waited until Jan of next year)... does anyone know if this is accurate? Thanks in advance I'd really like to have someone to discuss this all with.

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Fericito, I'm not in Utah, and I didn't use flex spending, so I can't comment on that, but I DID cover the entire cost of my banding on my own with no insurance coverage. I can tell you that my surgeons posted the cost on their website for self pay... AND they're a Center of Excellence, so it wasn't just a sales gimmick. The cost for my surgery (in the Pacific NW) was $10,245 which covered pre-op physical, surgical and nutritional consults, a group exercise class (physical fitness education, not a workout class!), and blood work, as well as all aftercare and fills for the first 90 days (afterward, fill apts should cost about $175 -$200, according to the office staff). I also had to pay about $450 to cover the 2 psych apts and about $25 for the post-surgical x-ray that I was unconscious for and don't even remember having. :-P

Those were my numbers. If I had needed a sleep study or other outside testing, I would have had to pay for those, but if you have any insurance, even if WLS is not covered, they will often cover that kind of testing if it's recommended by your PCP, regardless of WLS coverage. I guess because your PCP can argue it's medically necessary whether you have WLS or not.

Hope that helps!

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Fericito,

I am one of those who went "south of the border" for a self-pay Lap Band. I had my surgery done on 4/13/2012 in Cancun Mexico by dr. sergio verboonen. My cost for the pre-op blood work, EKG, chest x-ray, surgery, anesthesia, IV & post-op pain meds/antibiotics & one night hospital stay was $5400 USD. My patient facilitator, International Patient Facilitators, also paid for one night hotel stay at the hotel of my choice. My add'l costs were the airfare to Cancun & my husband and I stayed a total of 6 days there to enjoy the sun & relaxation!

I am paying out-of-pocket here in the Midwest for aftercare. My first fill/follow-up appointment is on May 16th. My cost for the new patient visit/examination/fill using a fluoroscope is $400. Add'l fills run $250, but all use fluroscopy (no blind fills).

Personally, I have been extremely pleased with my Lap Band journey so far. I had a few questions when I got back to the States & was able to contact my patient liaison and get answers from her & my surgeon.

I did about 6 months worth of research before making the decision to venture to Mexico. I didn't have the $10-20K to self-pay here in the U.S. This situation worked for me & I'm really excited about what the future holds. Good luck in your endeavor to get your Lap Band done! :-)

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Thank you for your answers. I did finally make it to one of the seminars and it looks like self pay is $11500 here in Utah. I have about half of what I need saved and will just keep plugging along. They did give me lots of options for borrowing and also said Flex Spending DOES qualify so I might wait until January but was REALLY hoping to get the surgery by summer. I'll keep you posted. Thanks again!

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There are many wonderful surgerons in Mexico that do the band as well as many other weight loss procedures. I had my surgery May 10 with dr. Ponce de leon in Tijuana Mexico. My insurance has an exclussion in all types of bariatric surgery so I was self pay and I am really glad I went to the surgeon I did!

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I would say to contact a surgeon and ask for a consultation. Then you would have no questions. Good luck,.

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I was given the guestimate of $17,000 to $20,000. My insurance company pays half and I'm responsible for the rest.

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