If you have achieved your weight loss goals but can’t celebrate your milestone because you’re now faced with a lot of excess skin, you’re not alone. Many people are frustrated after significant weight loss because their skin lacks the elasticity to adjust to their new body size. It’s often necessary to have body contouring surgery to combat sagging skin after weight loss.
Dr. Scott Holley and the team at West Michigan Plastic Surgery have helped many patients in Kalamazoo and Grand Rapids achieve a more attractive body shape after weight loss, with body contouring surgery. Dr. Holley is one of the most accomplished experts in the entire field of post-weight loss plastic surgery. Please view our photo gallery of amazing transformative results.
Surgery after weight loss may involve a combination of procedures to fully tone and contour the body. A lower body lift is one of the most common procedures performed after massive weight loss. A complete lower body lift includes a 360-degree enhancement of the abdomen, buttocks, waist, and hips in a single procedure. Loose skin surgery for the arms, thighs, and back may also be necessary after weight loss.
Candidates for surgery after weight loss typically have loose, sagging skin on various parts of the body. Ideal candidates should be healthy, non-smokers, have realistic expectations about surgery, and have maintained a stable weight for at least six months.
During your consultation, Dr. Holley will discuss your expectations and will help you understand all available surgical options. He will also review your medical history and design a plan based on your unique needs and aesthetic goals. Surgery after weight loss can be complex and is not without risks. It is often necessary to consider multiple, staged procedures to safely reach the goals that you have worked so hard to achieve. Dr. Holley will create a plan to reach those goals that is safe and cost-effective.
A lower body lift is a 360-degree contouring procedure performed under general anesthesia which addresses the most common concerns of loose, hanging skin of the abdomen, hips, and buttock. It typically involves a circumferential incision around the body, removing an ‘apron’ of excess skin and fat. Tissues are tightened, lifted, and repositioned.
An arm lift can be done with a body lift but this will depend on the extent of the body lift. Arm lift surgery involves making an incision in the inner area of the upper arm which may extend from the elbow to the armpit. The sagging skin is excised and excess fat removed.
A thigh lift is designed to remove loose skin and excess fat of the thighs. A body lift will provide some improvement to the outer thigh contour, but a separate thigh lift involves a curving incision on the inner thigh to more completely remove loose, sagging skin and fat
An increasingly popular option for contouring after weight loss is a bra line lift.
This is often a secondary procedure after a lower body lift designed to remove stubborn skin and fat under the arms and upper back.
Liposuction may be combined with a lower body lift, arm lift, thigh lift, or bra line lift to remove excess fat and achieve optimal body contours.
The results of a body contouring following weight loss are visible almost immediately. However, these are often complex surgeries that may take weeks, even months to completely heal. The results of body contouring procedures are generally long-lasting if you maintain a stable weight and adopt a healthy lifestyle.
While each case is unique, most patients can expect some pain, swelling, and limited mobility for 1-2 weeks. It is important to plan to have assistance with child care and routine needs around the home during this period. Most can return to work in 2-3 weeks, though strenuous work may require more time. Return to full, unlimited activity can be expected by 8 weeks.