Dramatic weight loss is a great achievement and has many benefits, Cosmetic Surgery After Weight Loss Surgery but most notably improving your health and self-esteem. However, many people who achieve such weight loss have large amounts of heavy, loose, excess skin folds around the abdomen, thighs, buttocks, breasts, arms, face, and neck.
The reason for this is that the skin is stretched over a long period of time by the accumulation of fat, and when a large amount of weight is lost, the skin and tissues often lack elasticity or are permanently damaged and cannot access it shrink back new, greatly reduced body size.
If you’ve managed to lose a lot of weight and have excess skin folds, cosmetic surgery may be the only way to reshape your body and complete your weight loss journey.
Excess skin problems
Excess skin can make your daily activities like getting dressed a chore. This can limit your mobility, and it can also lead to sanitary and medical problems such as infected wounds and rashes. You may also be frustrated that, your body is not reflecting the more positive image you now have of yourself.
Is plastic surgery for me?
Cosmetic surgery after weight loss is a personal choice. Before making a final decision, you need to research the types of cosmetic surgery available and discuss with your cosmetic surgeon the pros and cons of each procedure. You should be aware of the fact that most cosmetic procedures are major surgical procedures and, as such, involve risks and can lead to a scar. Your specialist doctor will advise you of the risks of the procedure you are considering and the possible scars, although most procedures will hide the scars in places that are hidden by clothing.
Research has shown that patients who undergo reconstructive body contouring plastic surgery, after massive weight loss experience significant improvements in physical function, emotional well-being, body image satisfaction, physical well-being, and quality of life.
Am i eligible for cosmetic surgery after weight loss surgery?
It is recommended that you wait at least 18 months, after weight loss surgery before undergoing cosmetic surgery to allow your skin, to shrink as much as possible and your weight loss to stabilize. You also need to be in good health.
If you have a chronic condition like diabetes or heart disease, your doctor may not recommend plastic surgery.
If you smoke, you must stop 6 weeks before the operation.
You also need to be realistic about what to expect from your cosmetic surgery and be aware that your skin will continue to age.
What is body contouring?
An operation to contour the body after severe weight loss is the collective name for a number of cosmetic procedures, that are intended to remove excess slack fat and skin while at the same time improving the shape of the supporting tissue underneath.
The most problematic areas are the abdomen, thighs, buttocks, breasts, upper arms, face, and neck. Your surgeon will work with you and make recommendations on the best strategy to treat the areas that are problematic for you as efficiently as possible. The result of body contouring is a more normal and sleek look with smoother contours.
Types of procedures for body contouring
Tummy tuck or appendectomy
A tummy tuck is done to remove excess fat and skin from the abdomen and to tone the abdominal muscles below. It improves the contours of the abdomen and ensures a flatter and firmer stomach.
A modification of the tummy tuck in patients who have an overhanging apron of skin and fat over the pubic area. It is performed on the lower abdomen below the belly button and only the excess skin and fat is removed².
A thigh lift, as the name suggests, corrects sagging skin on the thighs that has been overstretched due to weight gain. It results in firmer thighs in proportion to your legs and the rest of your body.
Lower body lift
Many patients find that the majority of weight loss occurs in areas such as the buttocks, hips, and thighs. A body lift, also known as a belt lumpectomy, removes excess skin from the abdomen, hips, thighs, and buttocks.
Women who have lost significant weight are often faced with sagging and flattened breasts. Cosmetic breast surgeries, including breast lifts, breast augmentation with implants, or both, remove excess skin while tightening and improving the overall shape of your breasts.
Men can develop large sagging breasts after losing weight. This is usually treated with a combination of liposuction and skin removal around the chest area called gynecologist surgery.
An arm lift (rhinoplasty) reduces the fat and excess slack skin on your upper arm. The underlying support tissue, which determines the shape of the upper arm, is tightened and smoothed.
You may notice relaxation of the mid face, cheeks, and neck after weight loss. After a face and neck lift, you can expect a smoother, wrinkle-free face and neck area.
A face lift removes sagging facial skin and unwanted fat deposits. A neck lift helps to correct sagging skin and wrinkles in the neck and jaw area. Either procedure hides the scar along the front of the ear and in the hair.
Multiple operations at the same time
Your cosmetic surgeon will advise you on whether you want to have several procedures performed at the same time or whether, you want to split them up. Combining some procedures at the same time will limit the total number of surgeries, and recovery periods you need to go through. Most cosmetic surgeries can be combined in any way. For example, breast deformation and tummy tuck are common procedures offered to many patients.
You have to keep in mind that the more procedures that are combined, the longer you will be in the operating room. You will also be anesthetized longer and more anesthetized, which can leave you feeling a little drained after the operation.