As more people access the NHS for weight loss (bariatric) surgery such as gastric banding or bypass we are seeing an increasing number of patients with skin and soft tissue excess after dramatic weight loss.
This can have a negative effect on patient’s quality of life, confidence, and cause medical problems due to the weight and volume of the excess skin.
As with some aspects of breast surgery, funding for these procedures is not automatically available and must be approved by the Clinical Commissioning Group responsible for the area where the patients lives before they can be referred to us. GPs or CCGs may refer to our plastic surgeons for an opinion on whether funding may be appropriate, but it is important to realise that our plastic surgeons are not involved in making the decisions on funding requests, and are not part of the appeals panel in the event that. Before gaining a referral in to the service, our plastic surgeons would generally expect a patient’s weight to have been stable for two years, and their diet to be as healthy as possible.
Surgical procedures we may be able to offer, subject to approval by the effective use of resources team at the CCG, include removal of excess skin around the stomach (abdominoplasty and apronectomy or panniculectomy), thigh lift, arm lift (brachioplasty) and lower body life (belt lipectomy).
Referrals into the service may be made by GPs or by bariatric surgeons. Please note that approval for funding from an effective use of resources panel should be sought prior to referral, as we are unable to initiate this process and seeing us first may lead to substantial delays and disappointment.