Abdominoplasty and similar procedures (apronectomy, panniculectomy, liposuction) for cosmetic or psychological reasons are not normally funded.
Funding will be found when there is a considerable abdominal apron, causing functional problems, following massive weight loss (usually through bariatric surgery and less commonly by dietary means) when the patient has the following circumstances and meets the following criteria:
- There must be documented evidence of clinical pathology (eg recurrent intertrigo which has lead to ulceration requiring repeated courses of treatment for a minimum period of one year) or disability (eg ambulatory or urinary difficulties) due to the skin fold in question
- The patient’s starting BMI before weight loss must have been no less than 45kg/m2
- The patient’s current BMI must be less than 30kg/m2. (In some patients a BMI of less than 30kg/m2 may not be achievable, due the weight of excess skin. In these circumstances the patient must have lost at least 15 BMI points, and their clinician must confirm that no further reduction in BMI will be possible without removal of excess skin)
- The patient’s weight must have been stable (normally at less than a BMI of 30kg/m2) for a minimum of 12 months.
- Further advice: it is important that patients who are considering bariatric surgery are given full information about the cosmetic consequences of the bariatric procedures prior to undergoing surgery, and advised that they will not be eligible for abdominoplasty or a similar cosmetic procedure on the NHS unless they meet these criteria
Body contouring by surgery is not funded
This includes any requests for implants as well as removal of tissue