Body Contouring Surgery
What is body contouring after major weight loss?
Surgical body contouring following major weight loss removes extra fat that is sagging and skin while refining the shape of the underlying support tissue. The result is an appearance that is more normal with much smoother contours.
Drastic weight loss has many benefits. But after weight reduction surgery, or any large amount of weight loss, the tissue and skin sometimes lack the elasticity to conform to the bodies reduced size.
Body contouring procedures may include:
- Breast lift: sagging, flattened breasts
- Tummy tuck: apron of excess skin hanging over the abdomen
- Lower body lifts: sagging of the abdomen, buttocks, groin and outer thighs
- Medial thigh lift: sagging of the inner, outer and mid thigh
- Brachioplasty (arm lift): sagging of the upper arms
Every body contouring procedure requires big incisions to eliminate extra skin. In many cases, these incisions may be extensive.
Incision length and pattern depend on the location of the extra skin and the amount to be removed, as well as your doctor’s surgical judgment and your personal preference. Advanced techniques allow incisions to be done in strategic places so that most clothes can hide them, but this is not always the case.
Body contouring is performed in stages most of the time. Your particular goals and condition and your surgeon’s best judgment, will all have an influence on how your doctor defines a surgical plan.
While it is possible to have taken you two years or more to lose the extra weight, it is possible to take equally as long for the results to be complete of your body contouring.
A full lower body lift takes care of the sagging abdomen, buttocks, hips, waists and outer thighs all in one procedure.
Incision patterns may vary, and include a circumferential incision that is around the body to remove the “belt” of extra fat and skin.
The incision patterns for lifting a woman’s sagging breasts will be determined based on the amount of excess skin to be removed. These may include one or a combination of incisions in a circular pattern around the areola, in a line extending from the areola to the breast crease, and horizontally along the breast crease. A breast implant also may be recommended to enhance breast shape and size.
Skin that is sagging in the upper arms is treated with an incision from the underarm area extending to the inside or back of the upper arm. Additional incisions on the arms may be necessary where sagging pockets of extra skin has formed.
The tighter, smoother contours that result from upper arm contouring are apparent immediately, although initially obscured by swelling and bruising. When the arm is raised, the ultimate scar will be more obvious.
Reforming of the thighs is accomplished through slits in the groin that can extend downward to the knee along the inner portion of the thigh.
Refining contours of the outer thigh often requires a slit extending from the groin to around the hip area. Through these slits your plastic surgeon will tighten tissues for a smoother, thigh.
Risks and Safety Information
The choice to have plastic surgery is completely private, and you will have to decide if the benefits will fulfill your goals and if the potential complications and risks of body contouring surgery are acceptable.
You will be asked to sign consent forms to ensure that you fully understand the procedure and any risks and potential complications.
Body contouring risks include:
- Bleeding Infection
- Fluid accumulation
- Poor wound healing
- Skin loss
- Blood clots, deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolism
- Excessive or widened scars
- Numbness or other changes in skin sensation
- Anesthesia risks
- Unfavorable scarring
- Residual skin laxity or contour irregularity
Additional Information About Body Contouring:
Board certified plastic surgeon Jeanette Padgett offers body plastic surgery that is tailored for each patient. Tummy tucks and liposuction are very popular for shaping specific areas of your body that cannot be improved through diet and exercise. A combination of procedures is generally recommended for patients who have successfully lost a lot of weight and wish to enjoy and celebrate their success with a trim appearance. Natural, proportional outcomes are Dr. Padgett’s specialty.
Please choose from the links below to learn more about cosmetic body contouring surgery procedures from board certified Oklahoma City plastic surgeon Jeanette Padgett: