Medical costs have significantly increased in recent years, but the incomes for most people have not kept pace. Therefore, when you seek permanent freedom from obesity, one of the first questions you might want an answer for is how much is weight loss surgery. Although it is a life-changing procedure with proven benefits for your health and longevity, the cost of weight loss surgery is still a judicious starting point, especially if you are going to pay for it out of pocket.
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What is weight loss surgery?
Weight loss surgery is now widely accepted as the most effective way to treat morbid obesity. The procedure is designed to reduce the capacity of your stomach to store food to help you cut down your meal portions. At the same time, it triggers favorable metabolic changes to lower your appetite. Some types of bariatric surgeries will also reduce your body’s ability to absorb calories, which accelerates weight loss.
Most common bariatric procedures
To understand what is weight loss surgery it is important to know the primary ways in which this surgery is performed. At present, gastric sleeve ranks as the most popular form of bariatric surgery, followed by Roux-en-Y gastric bypass. Both these procedures together account for a vast majority of weight loss surgeries performed today. In exceptional cases, duodenal switch surgery may be performed to treat super obesity.
Is it worth investing in bariatric surgery?
Many patients are concerned about how much is weight loss surgery because they are going to invest their hard-earned money to pay for it. Clearly, they expect to achieve their goals. Fortunately, both gastric sleeve and gastric bypass have excellent success rates. You may lose up to 80% of your excess weight in the first year itself. The procedure also reduces co-morbidities, which makes the cost of weight loss surgery worthwhile.
How expensive is bariatric surgery
Weight loss surgery prices will vary from one patient to another, depending on several factors. Price becomes more important when you don’t have insurance coverage because the out of pocket cost for bariatric surgery will be significantly high. Here are some of the salient points to help you evaluate how much is bariatric surgery.
Factors affecting the cost of weight loss surgery
- How expensive is bariatric surgery will depend on what type of procedure you have chosen.
- The geographical location will affect the average cost of bariatric surgery because of cost of living is variable.
- The bariatric surgeon’s fee will vary according to their qualifications, experience, and performance record.
- The hospital or bariatric center charges will vary according to their facilities, services, and reputation.
- How complicated is your procedure and whether you need a longer hospital stay will contribute to how expensive is weight loss surgery.
Is bariatric surgery cost-effective, cost-neutral or cost-saving?
- According to researchers, patients suffering from obesity spend $3,000 to $10,000 on their medical costs alone every year.
- Weight loss surgery can significantly lower these costs. If your co-morbidities reduce, you will spend less on treatment and drugs.
- Your annual health insurance premium costs may also come down after your weight loss surgery and resulting health improvements.
- Your work productivity and earning capacity may go up if your health, fitness, and emotional stability improves after bariatric surgery.
- How expensive is weight loss surgery should be seen in the context of its cost-effectiveness and potential cost-savings over time.
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Average cost of weight loss surgery
According to a comprehensive analysis of 13 research studies, it was found that the average cost of weight loss surgery was $14,389. This cost covered all types of bariatric procedures, ranging from the cheapest at $7,423 to the costliest at $33,541. However, the analysts stated that none of the research studies covered all of the vital or recommended cost components involved in this surgery. Therefore, the accuracy of these cost estimates remains questionable.
How much is a gastric sleeve
The average cost of gastric sleeve surgery may be as high as $20,000 in certain geographies. During your initial consultation, you should be upfront with your surgeon about how much is a gastric sleeve. Feel free to obtain bariatric surgery prices from different sources and do your own cost-benefit analysis before making a choice. How much is a gastric sleeve is a function of numerous factors, so make a well-considered decision.
How much is gastric bypass
The average cost of gastric bypass surgery may go up to $25,000 in some parts of the US. Check reliable online resources to find out how much is gastric bypass in the region where you live. Request quotes from multiple treatment providers and find out the standards of care you will receive for that price. Keep an open mind about all your options, and remember that how much is gastric bypass will vary from one location to another.
How much is lap band surgery
The average cost of lap band surgery may be in the range of $15,000 in some locations. However, when you are looking at the question of how much is lap band surgery, you should discuss with your surgeon if the procedure is worthwhile even if it is cheaper than other bariatric options. Most surgeons today do not recommend adjustable lap band surgery because of its relatively low efficacy and poor success rates.
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How much is balloon weight loss surgery
The average cost of a balloon weight loss surgery may only be about $5,000 in some regions. This is primarily a non-surgical weight loss technique with limited success. During your pre-op consultation, your surgeon will explain to you how much is weight loss surgery, what are your options, and what are the pros and cons of each. At this time, you should evaluate how much is balloon weight loss surgery and whether you are a candidate for it.
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Weight loss surgery prices
Bariatric surgery prices may not matter much to you if you have adequate health insurance coverage and your insurance company approves you for this surgery. However, thousands of women and men who struggle with obesity face the challenge of high weight loss surgery prices because they may lack insurance or may be declared ineligible by their insurers.
A research study published in the acclaimed journal JAMA revealed that patients primarily look at three factors when choosing a particular type of bariatric surgery. The first factor is weight loss surgery prices, and the other two factors are weight-loss efficacy and co-morbidity resolution potential of the procedure. The study also showed that patients are less concerned about the risks than they are about the cost of weight loss surgery.
Out of pocket cost for bariatric surgery
When you do not have insurance coverage or the insurer rejects your application for coverage on some grounds, the question of out of pocket cost for bariatric surgery becomes important. The good news is that you can consider safe yet affordable options for this surgery, and you also have the option to take out a loan to pay for your procedure.
- Costs with insurance: Even when you insurance coverage, it’s crucial to consider how much is bariatric surgery in terms of your deductibles, co-pays, and any other costs according to your health plan.
- Costs without insurance: Be prepared to explore options such as medical tourism with a reliable service provider. This could save you as much as 70% on your out of pocket cost for bariatric surgery.
- Medical care financing: A number of professional medical care financing companies will offer you competitive loans. This can help you pay your out of pocket cost for weight loss surgery in easy monthly installments.
- Other financing options: Talk to your family members and friends if they can lend you money for your procedure, consider a personal loan, or use your credit card loan facility to pay for your bariatric surgery.
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Cost of Weight Loss Surgery: What all is included?
When you receive bariatric surgery price quotes from different sources, it’s critical to consider what cost components are covered. You don’t want to find yourself in a situation where some of the costs are hidden initially, and you end up with unpleasant surprises when the final bill is presented. Your cost of bariatric surgery should ideally have the following inclusions:
- The bariatric surgeon’s fee
- Fee of any other attending doctors and nursing staff
- Anesthesia and sedation costs
- Surgery room charges
- One night stay at the hospital, if required
- Initial consultation and at least two post-op appointments
- One consultation with the nutritionist and physical therapist
- Pre- and post-surgical diagnostics and blood work
- Prescription medications for one week
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The Bottom Line
How much is weight loss surgery is a critical issue to address if you are going to pay for it out of your pocket. Take care to work with a trusted and reliable treatment provider who can correctly guide you about how expensive is bariatric surgery, what could be your best options, and how to achieve freedom from obesity with the lowest weight loss surgery prices.