Significant weight loss is a tremendous accomplishment. Whether it is a result of bariatric surgery or lifestyle change, you are possibly looking for the next step in your body transformation. A massive weight loss can leave you with very loose hanging skin in your trunk and limbs. Dr. Cherup performs several different types of after weight loss surgery.
Lower Body Lift
A lower body lift treats skin laxity in the following areas:
- Lower Back
- Pubic Area
- Upper Thighs
This procedure must be done when your weight loss is stable and near its nadir. This procedure includes an abdominoplasty with a lateral thigh lift and buttock lift. It requires an incision around the circumference of the lower trunk. The incision can be hidden by most two-piece bathing suits. It requires general anesthesia and usually a two-day hospitalization. Four drains and a liposuction garment finish the procedure. We get you out of bed the next day, but you cannot sit for 10 days. Lying flat and standing or walking are good.
The main risks of this procedure are skin loss along the incision and infection due to dehiscence (opening) of the wounds.
Medial Thigh Lift
If your weight loss leaves you with sagging skin at the thighs, you will need this after weight loss surgery procedure. An incision is made high in the front of the groin. It goes around near the labia and ends in the gluteal crease. A large ellipse of skin is removed and the upper thigh skin anchored to the groin and lifted upwards. If your thigh skin is tremendously loose, Dr. Cherup may employ a long vertical incision from the medial groin crease near your labia down to your knee. Although, this scar is more noticeable when you can see the inside of your knee and thigh, and has more tightening ability. The postoperative course involves liposuction garments, lying flat and elevating the legs for at least one week. Sutures are removed in two weeks.
The main risks of this surgery are infection and less-than-optimal scarring at the groin.
An arm lift or brachioplasty tightens the loose skin (or bat wings) on the upper arms left after weight loss. Dr. Cherup removes the skin from the underside of the arm all the way from the axilla to the elbow. The resulting scar is only visible when you raise your arms up in the air and rotate them outward.
This surgery is best done when the arm skin is loose and thin. When the skin is fat, the scars and contour end up not being as good. Postop care involves wearing snug arm sleeves, like a Bolero. The main risk of the surgery is lumpy or widened scars.
With weight loss, often the breasts deflate and sag. Women often choose to have a breast lift, or mastopexy, after weight loss, so that the breasts are raised back up onto the chest and have a firmer feel and shape. Sometimes breast augmentation is performed in conjunction with mastopexies. The surgery is done under general anesthesia. Dr. Cherup frees up the skin with incisions around the areola and elevates it off the breast gland. She then lifts the breast tissue back up onto the chest and anchors it with sutures, so it will stay there. After the wounds are closed, you will have scars around the areola, in a vertical line from the areola down to the inframammary crease, and horizontally for a short distance in the crease. A drain exits each breast from the axilla. All sutures are under the skin. The main risk of this breast surgery is less-than-optimal scarring. The scars can always be revised.
After significant weight loss, the neck and facial skin may never retract. A facelift will restore your cheek plumpness and neck contour. Please see our face lift section on this website for information.
Contact Dr. Cherup
If you have questions about plastic surgery after weight loss, or you’d like to discuss your case with Dr. Cherup, please call (412) 220-8181 or (877) 441-0639.