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Can you get a tummy tuck on the NHS?

(38 Posts)
ducdo Wed 22-Oct-08 07:55:41

I know the answer is no if its just for cosmetic reasons but if you have a really awful hanging tummy that will not shift after 3 babies and is really causing emotional problems for you, lack of confidence in yourself plus with your partner, then is it possible to have the op on the NHS if you see your doctor?

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akhemsProjectilePeaSoup Wed 22-Oct-08 08:00:24

yes you can sometimes. If it is sore, gets a rash etc.. make sure you document everything and visit your gp with it frequently, take photos, ask for creams etc to treat it, as you will probably have to fight with your pct to get it.

RGPargy Wed 22-Oct-08 09:24:05

It is possible, yes, depending on how much funding they have left etc. I had one on the NHS and it was a bit of a struggle to get it, but thankfully they gave me the operation in the end. That was 14 years ago now so i dont know how much things have changed since then. Good luck!

ducdo Wed 22-Oct-08 09:44:53

thanks rgpargy you lucky thing, I am really feeling so awful about my stomach and no exercise will shift the awful saggy skin that is hanging and its really getting me down. is there anything I should say or do to strengthen my case for the gp to recommend one for me or is it just down to their funding?

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RGPargy Wed 22-Oct-08 09:55:14

I totally sympathise with you. It gets you down, doesn't it?!

All i would say would be to go there and really really lay it on thick about how much it gets to you - tears are helpful too. I know you are obviously very down about it anyway, but if you're anything like me you will "try to be brave" in front of the doc/consultant. DONT! If they dont think you are affected enough about it you wont get anywhere. These are all tips that my GP told me before i met the consultant so it's deffo worth taking note! wink Basically, lay it on really thick about how much it affects your every day life, sex life, confidence, etc.


ducdo Wed 22-Oct-08 11:58:33

appt booked for tomorrow to see my GP so see what happens.. rgpargy, are you glad you went ahead with it? no regrets?

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PerkinWarbeck Wed 22-Oct-08 12:01:03

my old boss had a tummy tuck on the NHS. He also had his man-boobs reduced. However, he had lots of problems with the healing of the tummy tuck, and scarring, and said that whilst he would recommend the breast reduction to anyone, he would not recommend the tummy tuc at all.

ducdo Wed 22-Oct-08 12:10:56

I know its a major op which does scare me but my tummy is really making me feel so awful and I'm only 33 and dont' want to be hiding myself away for the rest of my life because I am so conscious of my tummy. its stopping me from doing so much so I figure its the only option..

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RGPargy Wed 22-Oct-08 12:36:40

I have absolutely no regrets whatsoever. I'm 100% glad i went ahead with it. Go for it!

ducdo Wed 22-Oct-08 15:04:05

rgpargy - did they move your belly button too?

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RGPargy Wed 22-Oct-08 16:57:09

Yep! They made a new hole for it!

rach345 Wed 22-Oct-08 17:00:59

thats what i need to find out, if i can get a tummy tuck and other bits put back where they are supposed to be. I have lost over 8st 7lbs so far. have an appointment next mth to see the doctor about it. so hopefully.. fingers crossed.

ducdo Wed 22-Oct-08 17:04:52

wow that is brilliant, well done you..

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stitch Wed 22-Oct-08 17:04:54

apparently i would qualify for an nhs tummy tuck. my sister is a surgeon who would be the decision maker, and she says i would. after lots of poking and prodding at awful baggy folds of skin, she says she would do it under the nhs. (however, as she works in different part of the country, it was more of a sisterly chat, than a consultation, iyswim)
but she is completely and utterly against the idea. says the risks of infection are too high to be acceptable in her opinion. she says that unless you make your living from your looks, then it is safer to find other, no surgical solutions, like covering up. wearing control knickers etc.

stitch Wed 22-Oct-08 17:07:38

sorry, i disagree with the laying on thick act.
dsis says that as a team, the surgeons are not stupid. they are well aware that people have been primed to act all upset. she says that a professional would never ever agree to one, if it wasnt appropriate. no matter how many tears were shed.
fwiw. i was laughing with her when she checked out my belly folds, and she still thought i would qualify

RGPargy Wed 22-Oct-08 17:23:08

well, as i said, it was 14 years ago and that's what i was told to do by my doctor!

stitch Thu 23-Oct-08 07:55:52

rg, absolutely.
i am just repeating dsis observations. according to her, if there really is a real need, then it is obvious

ducdo Sun 02-Nov-08 17:09:16

well, I had the appointment with my GP who was very understanding and yes I did cry, but genuine tears and didn't have to make things worse than they already are. After listening to me talking about how I was feeling and having a look at my tummy, she disappared off to another consultants room and after a few minutes returned to say there was nothing they could do for me - the NHS are not able to help with what is considered a cosmetic procedure. To say I was disappointed is a huge understatement. No where to go from here apart from save up to pay myself.. which will be years. Very sad about the whole thing..
Plus saw a young girl have the procedure on Channel 4s Embarrassing Bodies Teenage Years in the week - and feel even more so thats its the only option...

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Dabblesinpumpkinmaking Sun 02-Nov-08 18:52:27

rach345 - how are u losing weight? well doen btw!

Amandoh Sun 02-Nov-08 21:17:19

Ducdo ~ I'm sorry to read that your GP doesn't feel you qualify for a tummy tuck on the NHS.

I had a tummy tuck last year and it has made such a difference to my life. After losing five and a half stone very quickly and having 3 children my tummy was in an awful state. Shopping was a nightmare as all tops had to be long enough to cover my "jelly fold" and I couldn't wear dresses. I really hated going out.

If it's getting you down then go back to your GP and see if they can recommend a few local surgeons to you. Some of the clinics may offer finance. Also, depending on how bad your tummy is the op may not be as expensive as you think.

ducdo Mon 03-Nov-08 10:00:34

Amandoh, thanks for your message. Did you get your op done privately then? I emailed a couple of places at the weekend asking them to send me details / prices etc. and I guess I should book an appointment to have a consultation to see exactly what they would do and get a better idea of the cost, then I can work out how much I need.

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Amandoh Mon 03-Nov-08 11:45:04

Ducdo ~ Yes, I had my tummy tuck done privately. Your first port of call really ought to be your own GP when trying to find a local surgeon and not the ads in the back of the glossies. I know the clinics say they've been in business for 20 or more years but the surgeons working for them come and go.

When I had my operation (Operations really as I had a breast reduction too) my Surgeon regularly wrote to my GP. My point here is that your GP will know who is worth recommending due to feedback from his patients who have had private surgery.

Will you keep us updated? smile

ducdo Mon 03-Nov-08 12:37:53

thanks Amandoh, you're so right, there are so many adverts and companies around I wouldn't know where to start. I will book an appt with my GP this week and see what information they can provide. Would feel much happier being recommended so will let you know how I get on..

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MUM23ASD Tue 04-Nov-08 22:16:29

ducdo.... i'm 41 and know how you feel.

My youngest is 9 and i have spent the past 9 years trying to pull in my tummy constantly- to stop people asking if i am pregnant.

i need to lose weight- but having done so before- and the 'jelly belly' looking worse then- i am scared to lose wieight.

my BMI is 32.

I saw the 'embarressing bodies' girl too...and that peogramme inspired me to see GP.... but unlike you- have not been brave yet.

It effects my life. I cannot let DH touch/see it- unless i'm disgustedly prodding it to demostarte to someone how hideous i look- NOONE sees it!

It does not feel part of my body... it is a cold clammy blob- "i" "could" "take" "a" "knife" "and" "slice" "it" "off"

I can fit into size 14 jeans- which i am happy about- untill i try to pull them around my tummy- which measures 44".... so i have to wear size 18/20.....and tops are a nightmare- they either make me look worse (pregnant) or are so big to cover my tum that they fall off my shoulders/twist across my flat boobs...

that girl on C4 really summed it up well...when asked about the scar- she said she's rather be scarred than have that tummy.

i wondered about drawing (as the surgeons do) with a permanent marker- what bits i want chopped off?!

last month i even scalded my tummy as it gets in the way- as i don't feel it- itgot too close to kettle.

ducdo Wed 05-Nov-08 13:34:20

MUM23ASD ... sorry to hear you are feeling so low aswell.. seems we're not the only ones out there.
I agree with the statement you mentioned that the girl on Ch4 said about rather having the scar, definitely the same for me. I went on the website and there was a link for the surgeon she used - Alex Karidis based in London. I contacted their offices and they charge £75 consultation fee (which he donates to hospital) and a tummy tuck with him is around £7,200 .. so much money, I wonder where the 19 yr old on TV got that kind of cash from and wonder if as she was part of the programme whether Channel 4 paid for it? if so how lucky!? Be just my luck to bump into a doctor on the street filming for such a programme!
Don't be scared to loose the weight, if it's what you really want and you are not happy at the size you are now, then you really must do something about it. Try to pluck up the courage to speak with your GP, they should be able to provide you with some help to healthy eating or exercise plans? I was a right mess with the GP last week, crying like a baby but at the end of the day, that's what they're there for .. to listen to us and help with our problems. I found it easier talking to my female GP that I could family/friends as I am too embarrassed about my problem and I don't really care what she thinks of me but I do care what my family and friends think.
Hope you decide to make the appointment ... Take care

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