Significant weight reduction is a major achievement that enhances your health, outlook, appearance and overall wellbeing. But excessive weight loss may leave you with heavy sagging skin around your arms, thighs, abdomen, buttocks, breasts, and face. Excessive weight loss leads to loosening of skin as a result of stretching for a long time, thereby preventing the skin from shrinking back to its original position. The leftover skin on your body may cause various problems such as hygienic and medical issues, sores, rashes, infections and is a major cosmetic issue. Contouring plastic surgery can help you achieve a new, positive and confident image.
Body contouring is a procedure that removes the excess sagging skin and fat to improve the shape of your body and provide smoother contours.
Candidates for body contouring procedures
Eligibility of an individual for body contouring surgery includes:
- Stable weight
- Healthy and free from diseases
- A non-smoker
- Positive attitude, realistic expectations and mentally prepared
- Committed to proper nutrition and a healthy diet
Body contouring procedures
Various parts of the body may require surgery to make them look smooth and shaped. The procedures include:
Panniculectomy: A panniculectomy is a surgical procedure to improve the contour of the abdomen by removing excess fat and hanging skin (pannus) from the lower part of the abdomen.
Abdominoplasty: Abdominoplasty, known more commonly as a 'tummy tuck', is a surgical procedure to remove excess skin and fat from the middle and lower abdomen and to tighten the muscles of the abdominal wall. There are two types of tummy tuck procedures: complete abdominoplasty and partial or mini-abdominoplasty.
Facelift and neck lift: This procedure removes excess skin around the face and neck and corrects the sagging skin of the mid-face, jowls, and neck.
Breast lift: Breast lift may be performed with or without breast augmentation (implants) or breast reduction. The pattern of incision for breast lift will be based on the amount of excess skin to be removed. These include circular incisions around the areola, an incision from the areola to the breast crease or along the breast crease.
Abdominoplasty or tummy tuck: This procedure involves removing the excess skin around the abdomen and towards the back, which follows by tightening of the abdominal muscles.
Lower body lifts: This procedure involves treating the sagging abdomen, waist, buttocks, hips, and thighs in a single procedure. Excess skin is removed by making an incision around the body’s circumference.
Thigh lift: This procedure involves removing excess skin from the upper, middle, and inner thigh around the area from the groin towards the knee.
Arm lift or Brachioplasty: This procedure involves removing excess skin from the upper arms. An incision is made from the underarm and extended towards the elbow.
These body-lift contouring procedures are carried out under the effect of general anesthesia and are performed one at a time or combined together based on its safety.
As with any surgery, body contouring procedures involve certain risks. An individual should weigh the benefits, risks and decide to undergo the surgery. Some risks include:
- Bleeding and infection
- Excessive visible scars
- Contour irregularity
- Accumulation of fluid
- Excessive loss of skin
Most individuals can return to work 2 to 4 weeks after body-contouring procedures. Swelling, soreness and bruising for a few weeks are normal.
It takes around two or more years to achieve complete results of body contouring. These procedures may be planned based on your surgeon’s judgment and realistic goals.