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Abdominoplasty vs. Panniculectomy

Posted in Body Contouring, Surgical Procedures, August 26th, 2012 | Posted by Dr. Kreidstein

In Ontario, patients who have abdominal skin that hangs over the groin crease and have a history of bad skin infections or other complications can ask their surgeon to apply for insurance (OHIP) coverage of a panniculectomy (removal of a skin apron). Depending on the severity of the pannus, this can be a life-saving operation, and at minimum will dramatically improve your quality of life. The operation is not intended as a cosmetic procedure, and we are careful to demonstrate at our consultations the limits of a panniculectomy and the benefits of adding an abdominoplasty (cosmetic) to the procedure. An abdominoplasty is much less expensive if a panniculectomy is already covered. On rare occasions, we have no opportunity to perform a cosmetic procedure (if the pannus is too large or infected), and we have to defer the cosmetic procedure to a second operation.

Panniculectomy is performed to manage serious complications from abdominal apron

Panniculectomy is performed to manage serious complications from abdominal apron

  • Sue Patterson

    I am 56 years old and had gastric banding several years ago. I have lost over 200 lbs and am still losing albeit slowly. I exercise regularly with a group of friends and feel pretty good. I am a Type 2 diabetic partially as a result of my obesity. The apron you speak of on me if extremely saggy so much so that when i walk the hanging skin hangs overtop of my legs, almost down to my knees which causes rashes, itching and burning as a result of the friction not to mention rashes under my belly. I am wondering if OHIP might cogver some of this.

    • http://www.drkreidstein.com/ Dr. Michael Kreidstein

      Hi Sue,
      I have little doubt we could successfully apply for coverage of your panniculectomy. Please call us to arrange a visit.

  • Elle

    Is there any way to get the panniculectomy covered by OHIP if you have OTHEr medical conditions? I have a cystocele that needs repairing but they want me to try losing weight, However that is very difficult due to pain from it, Not being able to lift anything heavy and then have a SI joint dysfunction which also exasperbates the pain, and makes working out harder for me as the muscles i need to work out are my core muscles which i cant even do many exercises because my stomach literally gets in the way of working out/bending over, down, stretching and its making my cystocele more painful and was told to hvae the least amount of pressure on my abdomen as possible. yes i need to lose weight but no matter how much weight I lose It NEVER goes from my low abdomen. I have had two children and it has made the excess skin, and fat there worst. Its also made my low back pain very bad and makes my SI joint dysfunction much worst. I am wondering if these would even help me qualify for OHIP? I am willing to do the exercises but its hard to work your core when you cant get too it because of the fat and it limits your mobility, movement, stretching ect….. And Im tired of the pain…

    • http://www.drkreidstein.com/ Dr. Michael Kreidstein

      Without considering the specifics of your medical condition, OHIP does allow for application based on any medical grounds.

  • jodi


    I would love to get a tummy tuck, but was wondering how you get OHIP to pay for this. I had two c-section as both my girls were big babies. One was 10lbs,10ozs and the other 9lbs, 1oz. I was very huge at both my pregnancies as I carried all my baby weight in my stomach. Now my stomack hangs over and it is just not nice looking. I have tried excerising to lost it and as I lose weight the excess skin just stays put. How do I go about getting this fixed.

    • http://www.drkreidstein.com/ Dr. Michael Kreidstein

      Our first step is to hold a consultation. Please ask your MD to fax us a referral. We will counsel you on possible OHIP coverage.

  • misty

    Hi. I have Degenerative Disc disease, Pinched Sciatica and Stenosis in
    my lower back. I Have lots over 100 pounds these past 2 years and The
    tummy skin is super heavy , it also gets infected and hurts my back and
    posture. Do you think I could get coverage under OHIP for a

    • http://www.drkreidstein.com/ Dr. Michael Kreidstein

      You certainly sound like a good candidate- we will confirm for you at your consultation. Please ask your MD to arrange a referral.

  • Stefania

    I am Type 1 diabetic. I am pregnant with my 4th child. The first 3 pregnancies were HUGE. I gained and lost 80+ pounds with the last one (despite good blood sugar control and running regularly, up to 13 km throughout my first trimester). I measured 15 weeks BIGGER – like I was carrying triplets, despite only carrying one child.
    My pannus does not hang past my pubic bone, however, post c-sections, I have had my recovery time prolonged as the incision has become infected due to the overhang of skin. I had to lift up the skin and blow dry it, in order to help the incision area to dry. I also had a couple of infections that required antibiotics. Nevertheless, after they finally healed, I haven’t had further antibiotic treatment needed.
    I am only 5 weeks pregnant. I really hope that when I deliver this last and final time that extra skin can be cut off to prevent from infection from occurring again AND because I hate that hanging flap of skin.
    I also believe due to the massive size of my pregnancies (huge babies and polyhydramnios) that I have diastasis of my abdominal muscles. I believe it is not recommended to have that abdominoplasty done at the same time as a c-section!? Is this true?
    Is there some way that I could have you operate with my OB-GYN when I deliver to at least get rid of part of the pannus ?! What do you suggest? I would really ALSO like my upper abs sewed back together too though. My husband will also be getting fixed, so we know that we are finished.
    What do you suggest? I’ll be delivering at Grand River Hospital in Waterloo, Ontario.
    Btw, do you think somehow I could get this covered? (even though the pannus doesn’t hang over my pubic bone…yet?!…maybe post 4th c-section, it will!?) I’ll be induced at the end of August, 2015.

    • http://www.drkreidstein.com/ Dr. Michael Kreidstein

      Hi Stefania,
      Although the criteria for OHIP panniculectomy are rigid, we may still have a successful application if we provide good evidence of your skin infections. Please see us once you have lost your pregnancy weight, and bring a letter from your MD or photos of your skin infection. We will do our best to get you coverage.
      We do no recommend (or offer) abdominal surgery in the setting of c-section or hysterectomy.

  • jay cook

    I am very pleased with the result that Dr Kreidstein has given me after my tummy tuck. I would recommend him.

  • Zizi

    I am 27 years old. I do weigh 254 pounds and I am 5’7.5″
    My stomach has always been an issue for me. I had a c-section in 2005 And my stomach is hanging really low. I get a lot of infections underneath the flab. Rashes that are very bad and itchy and as well as a bad smell too
    I am starting to have a very bad backache from being too heavy in my stomach area People look at me and don’t believe when I say I am 250ish pounds but I believe it’s mostly to do with my stomach.
    Would I be able to coverage from ohip??

    • http://www.drkreidstein.com/ Dr. Michael Kreidstein

      You may be a candidate for OHIP coverage. We would explain your options at consultation. Please obtain a referral from your MD.

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