Women or men who have lost significant weight are often left with drooping, sagging skin. Massive weight loss is like deflating a balloon. Skin becomes saggy, loose and misshapen. Some pockets of fat remain. No amount of exercise or diet will remove this excess skin.
Men or women who see this excess skin often consider arm reduction or thigh lift, circumferential trunk lift, breast lift and augmentation, and face and neck lift. After massive weight loss, patients can see an improvement in blood pressure, diabetes, energy, breathing problems, and arthritis but they are reminded of their old, heavier body each time they look in the mirror and see sagging, draping skin.
Surgery can remove the excess skin and provide a more attractive, toned contour. Several procedures are often required to address all areas of concern and bring results as close to your goals as possible.
Most insurance does not cover these procedures. We are happy to help you check with your insurance carrier if you feel coverage may be available.
It is important to have realistic expectations about what the procedure can achieve.
Circumferential trunk lift, also called belt lipectomy, removes hanging, draping skin from the abdomen and back.
CIRCUMFERENTIAL TRUNK LIFT RESULTS
A brachioplasty, arm reduction, removes skin and fat (bat wings) to give a thinner, tighter arm contour. Incisions are modified if excess skin extends onto the chest.
ARM REDUCTION RESULTS
Medial thigh lift is used to remove draping skin from the upper thighs. A thigh lift can be extended under the buttock or combined with abdominoplasty or circumferential trunk lift depending on where the excess skin is located.
Most patients experience moderate discomfort, which is relieved with prescription medications. Compressive, support garments are worn for 4 to 6 weeks. Patients are back to most activities within 2 to 3 weeks, depending on their job requirements. They are typically back to full, unrestricted activity within 4 to 6 weeks.
You can usually expect to have thinner arms, or thighs with removal of much of the excess skin. Patients who intend to lose additional weight should discuss this with Dr. Kennedy. As with all contouring procedures, realistic expectations are very important to ensure your expectations are in line with expected results.
All surgery carries some risk. Body contouring after weight loss has become common and safe, but no surgery is without potential problems. These are generally minor, such as scarring, a change in sensation, unevenness or delayed fluid and swelling. Rarely, more significant problems can occur.
Copy adapted from the joint ASPS and PSEF website.