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Procedure to Remove a Large Apron of Fat

I'm overweight, but have lost weight going from 400lbs. to 330. I'm 24 years old with good blood pressure, and no diabetes nor other health problems.

The better I get around my ribs, across my chest, and in my arms, the bigger my lower tummy gets. Lower body exercise is getting harder because of this apron of fat hanging. It even changes how I sit.

I want to get rid of it, but it's kind of heavy. How many pounds, or in general, how much can I remove from my body safely? How much would a procedure this large cost?

Doctor Answers (13)

Body Contouring of Abdominal "Fat Apron"

+2
Thank you for your question.  You are to be congratulated on the 70 lb weight loss.  At 330 lbs you are still too heavy to be ready for this type surgery, but researching what you will need to do is a good idea.  There are several approaches.  Removing the apron alone is called a panniculectomy.  This helps relieve the  rubbing of skin, but usually is not a good solution for contour.  An abdominoplasty works well for smaller amounts of weight loss, but a lower body lift generally gives the best restoration of contour in persons like yourself with a substantial weight loss.  Keep up the good work.  Change is possible.


Seattle Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 93 reviews

Body lift for removal of abdominal apron of fat

+1
Congratulations on your substantial weight loss - way to go!! You're young, and other than your obesity, you appear to be fairly healthy. This bodes favorably for you in the long run. I'm afraid, though, that at this stage you are probably not yet an ideal candidate for a panniculectomy, the procedure that removes the apron of fat (pannus) at the lower abdomen, or a total body lift, which removes a "belt" instead of the apron only found in the front. Both of these operations that we are addressing are not operations done specifically FOR weight loss, but rather, are done AFTER massive weight loss has occurred. In regards to your question, though, usually due to the large size of the pannus, substantial weight loss can do achieved. This procedure ususally costs several thousand dollars, and may vary in cost, depending on how much time is taken in the Operating Room, as well as if other procedures are to be done concurrently. I understand that it is getting harder to deal with the pannus, and that it interferes with daily activities and exercise. My only reply to that is: KEEP AT IT!!! YOU CAN DO IT!!! Continue to lose more weight, continue to watch what and how you eat, and continue increasing the activity level in your life. When it's the right time, a panniculectomy or total body lift will work wonders for you, and the quality of your life will be immensely improved. Good luck.

Daniel Kaufman, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

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Panniculectomy versus abdominoplasty vs body lift

+1

Hello,

Thank you for the question.  There are a variety of body contouring procedures available to improve the appearance of the abdomen and waist after significant weight loss.  These body contouring procedures are not designed to be a weight reduction treatment rather they are designed to improve the appearance of the body part in question.  In general there are three levels of waist contouring procedures from least involved to most involved in terms of cost, down time, and recovery.  These are panniculectomy: removal of just the overhanging skin of the abdomen.  Abdominoplasty: full tightening of the abdominal area including abdominal wall and belly button rejuvenation.  And finally a lower body lift which is an abdominoplasty in the front and a buttock lift in the back.

All the best,

Dr Remus Repta

Remus Repta, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 95 reviews

Best procedure to remove a large apron of fat????????????

+1

Congratulations on losing the weight.  An abdominal pannus can be very debilitating and cause hygiene issues as well as difficulty with ambulation.  So far you have lost 70 pounds and you are continuing to lose weight.  If that is the case, do not have your surgery until you have reached your goal weight.

 

The other piece of this picture is that you are still morbidly obese at 330 pounds.  I would encourage you to get closer to a normal body weight.  You may be able to reach this with true lifestyle modification, but you may also need some help.  Bariatric surgery has excellent outcomes compared to lifestyle changes alone.  Should you remain in the morbidly obese category, I would encourage you to explore the option of weight loss surgery.

Stephen M. Chen, MD
Richmond Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

Procedure to Remove a Large Apron of Fat

+1

If you are still losing weight, it would be best to continue with your regimen until you have reached your maintenance weight.  After your maintenance goal is reached you can schedule a consultation with a board certified Plastic Surgeon for a panniculectomy (removal of excess abdominal apron fat).  Unlike a cosmetic abdominoplasty (tummy tuck) this procedure removes the lower hanging excess of fat and skin and makes it easier to move about and exercise and will help you stay motivated on your healthy lifestyle program.

Thomas Guillot, MD
Baton Rouge Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

Panniculectomy to remove excess abdominal apron

+1

I would suggest a panniculectomy.  This procedure removes excess skin and fat of the anterior abdominal wall.  The conditions you describe, I hope, should be covered by most insurance plans; however, your insurance may require you to lose more weight based on your height.  This number is your BMI.  Not having seen your pictures, I would guess your surgical specimen would weigh between 50 and 80 pounds.  For your case, I would suggest this procedure be perfomed in a hospital.  Good luck with your weight loss journey.  Sincerely, Dr. Katzen

J. Timothy Katzen, MD, FACS
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

Weight Loss and Surgery

+1

Thank you for your question.

I always recommend for best results and safety, for the patient to lose as much weight as possible prior to surgery.  Panniculectomy is an option to get rid of the apron of skin/fat you are referring to.

I would also want to get a medical clearance to proceed with surgery from your doctor once you have reached the lowest weight you can.

Best Wishes!

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 751 reviews

Panniculectomy

+1

It sounds like you need a panniculectomy, but these are plagued by compications from wound healing and seromas. It is always better to lose as much weight first as possible.

Steven Wallach, MD
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Procedure to Remove a Large Apron of Lower Tummy Skin and Fat

+1

Regarding: "Procedure to Remove a Large Apron of Fat  I'm overweight, but have lost weight going from 400lbs. to 330. I'm 24 years old with good blood pressure, and no diabetes nor other health problems.

The better I get around my ribs, across my chest, and in my arms, the bigger my lower tummy gets. Lower body exercise is getting harder because of this apron of fat hanging. It even changes how I sit.

I want to get rid of it, but it's kind of heavy. How many pounds, or in general, how much can I remove from my body safely? How much would a procedure this large cost?"

Body contouring operations are best done when the patient's BMI is 30 and under, preferably close to 26 and the weight loss has stabilized for at least 6 months. At that time, the cosmetic results would be vastly superior and the incidence of complication associated with these procedures would be lower.

From your articulate description it sounds like you are committed to self-improvement and are hampered by the lower abdominal over hang or apron. It can be removed with a PANNICULECTOMY. The operation is NOT a tummy Tuck but is meant to remove the excess skin overhang to improve comfort, hygiene and activity. The amount of weight of the apron varies significantly and depending on its size, you may need to be monitored in the hospital for a day or two. The cost of the procedure will vary widely geographically.

Dr. Peter Aldea

Peter A. Aldea, MD
Memphis Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 61 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.