A well-toned body with smooth contours is often a sign of fitness achieved by healthy diet and exercise.
But exercise cannot always achieve desired results for people who have loose, sagging skin and uneven contours. Aging, sun damage, pregnancy and significant fluctuations in weight as well as genetic factors may contribute to poor tissue elasticity and can result in sagging of the abdomen, buttocks, thighs and upper arms.
If you desire a firmer, more youthful-looking body contour, then a surgical body lift may help achieve your goals. It improves the shape and tone of the underlying tissue that supports fat and skin.
Excess sagging fat and skin are removed to treat conditions caused in part by poor tissue elasticity. In addition, the procedure(s) can improve a dimpled, irregular skin surface, commonly known as cellulite. A body lift may include these areas:
- Abdominal area, locally or extending around the sides and into the lower back area
- Buttocks, that may be low, flat or shaped unevenly
- Groin that may sag into the inner thigh
- Thigh, including the inner, outer, or posterior thigh, or circumferentially
Medications are administered for your comfort during the surgical procedures. The choices include intravenous sedation and general anesthesia. Your doctor will recommend the best choice for you.
Incision length and pattern depend on the amount and location of excess skin to be removed, as well as personal preference and surgical judgment.
A complete lower body lift treats the buttocks, abdomen, waist, hips and thighs in one procedure. A circumferential incision around the body removes an apron of excess skin and fat and repositions and tightens tissues.
A combination of liposuction and surgical body lifts may be necessary to achieve an improved contour. Deep support sutures within underlying tissues help to form the newly shaped contours.
Closing the Incisions
Sutures, skin adhesives or tapes close the skin incisions.
Body Lift Recovery
After your body lift procedure is completed, dressings or bandages will be applied to the incisions. A small, thin tube may be temporarily placed under the skin to drain any excess blood or fluid that may collect.
Following your physician’s instructions is key to the success of your surgery. It is important that the surgical incisions are not subjected to excessive force, abrasion, or motion during the time of healing. Your doctor will give you specific instructions on how to care for yourself.
Body Lift Results
The results of a body lift are visible almost immediately. However, it may take as much as one to two years, or more, for the final results of the body lift procedures to fully develop.
Scars will remain, but the overall results are long-lasting, provided that you maintain a stable weight and general fitness.
As your body ages, it is natural to lose some firmness. However, most of your initial improvement should be relatively permanent.