A panniculectomy is a procedure which removes the fatty apron (pannus) that can form around our lower abdomen. Patients who are over weight tend to form this excess fat and skin which drapes over their pants line. Patients who have lost significant weight can also be left with excess skin in this same area. In both cases, this pannus can be heavy, interfere with clothes and activities and can be difficult to clean under.
How is a panniculectomy different from a abdominoplasty or tummy tuck?
In both cases, an incision is made along the lower part of the abdomen which is well hidden by most undergarments and swimsuits. In both procedures, the excess skin and fatty tissue of the lower abdomen is removed. However, the panniculectomy procedure does NOT include tightening of the abdominal muscles, repositioning of the belly button and does not improve the contour of the flanks or “love handles”.
Will insurance pay for a panniculectomy?
In most cases, yes. A panniculectomy is considered a medically necessary procedure if the pannus causes hygiene problems or limits normal activity.