Body Lift or Thigh Lift for Stretch Marks on Calves, Hips, and Thighs?

I gained 33 lbs with one pregnancy and 28 lbs with the other. I'm 30 years old, and feel as though my lower body looks 60! I know there is nothing permanent for stretch marks and cellulite removal. I had 6 Fraxel treatments on my legs and there was some improvement. I want to wear shorts again. I would like to get rid of the stretch marks on my hips and calves. Is this possible with a lower body lift or thigh lift? I understand I will have another scar, but its better than many. I have olive skin and always scar lighter than my skin tone.

Doctor Answers 17

Body Lift

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If you have stretch marks on your hips and thighs, a lower body lift will offer you the best procedure by removing the excess, damaged skin.  A thigh lift only removes thigh skin.  Fraxel will probably make no or minimal change.

Body lift or thigh lift for stretch marks

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1. A BODY LIFT = Buttock lift + bilateral Lateral Thigh Lifts + Abdominoplasty (Tummy Tuck)

2. Stretch marks are NOT superficial markings. They are through and through CRACKS in the skin that filled with scar tissue. Therefore short of removing them with surgery - there is NO WAY currently available to just erase them.

A Body Lift WOULD remove the stretch marks in the sagging skin just below the incision and, depending on the skin sag, as much as 3 to 8 inches below the incision.

As such some of the stretchmarks on your buttocks, upper thighs and lower tummy would definitely be removed, there is NO WAY for those on the calves and ankles to be removed.


Peter A. Aldea, MD
Memphis Plastic Surgeon

Body Lift or Thigh Lift for Stretch Marks on Calves, Hips, and Thighs?

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Body lift procedures can address excess skin by removing it and re-draping the areas for a tighter, firmer look. There are multiple procedures and products that claim to eliminate Cellulite but unfortunately they do not achieve great success if there is significant skin laxity. Stretch marks on the hips can typically be addressed with a body lift. Those on the calf are more difficult to address. Cellulite is a structural problem underneath the skin that is caused by several factors and there is currently not a gold standard to address cellulite. My recommendation is to schedule a consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon to devise a plan to address your cosmetic concerns.

Stretch marks

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If the stretch marks are within an area where they can be excised then that will help.

THERE IS NO TREATMENT FOT THIGH LIFT. FRAXEL IS JUNK MEDICINE, designed to part you with your money.

Samir Shureih, MD
Baltimore Plastic Surgeon

Getting rid of stretch marks

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Stretch marks are particularly troublesome to many of my patients who are new moms. Depending on the severity of the stretch marks and their locations, sometimes a surgical procedure to remove the damaged skin (i.e abdominoplasty or lower body lift) is a more effective choice. For my patients who have scars that are not amenable to surgical removal, I have had very good success with a combination laser treatment with the Pixel Fractionated Erbium Laser and Skin Tightening Laser. Cellulite can also be addressed with non-surgical Accent RFA laser treatments.

The Management Of Stretchmarks

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Your history suggests that you would be a candidate for a lower body lift. This procedure removes excess skin in the lower back, flanks and abdomen. It also tightens muscles and improves contour. Stretch marks are removed in the area of the skin resection. Unfortunately, this won't help you with your calf and thigh stretch marks.

It's possible that stretching of the skin during this procedure will result in less noticeable stretch marks. The procedure also relocates residual stretch marks to a higher level where they may be less noticeable. Unfortunately, at this time there's no good way to manage stretch marks, short of removal.

Body Lift or Thigh Lift for Stretch Marks on Calves, Hips, and Thighs?

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Stretch marks are nothing more than scars in skin that has been stretched beyond its elastic limit.  They are permanent, and nothing short of direct excision will be effective in eliminating them.  With thigh lift and lower body lift, the areas planned for excision will allow removal of stretch marks only within those zones of skin excision.  Lifting or tightening the remaining skin may make the stretch marks not excised look less noticeable.  It is unlikely that the calf stretch marks can be reliably improved.  Stretch marks in the lower abdomen, hips, and thighs, however, can be removed and/or improved.  Best of luck!

Thhis hips streach marks

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Body lift will removed the stretch marks from the abdomen, waist and back. Stretch marks located in other areas have to be evaluated to have a direct excision or other dermatological treatments including fractional lasers.

Body Contouring

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If you have realistic expectations, a body lift would be able to remove some of the damaged, loose skin you've described in your lower body, but a thigh lift would not be able to accomplish results in your calves. Please consult with a board-certified plastic surgeon.

How to improve stretch mark appearance

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Stretch marks are areas of your skin where you have lost elasticity which resulted in scar formation and loss of pigment. Early treatment with retin-a cream while the marks are still red has shown to be of some help. Deep fractional laser resurfacing, not Fraxel which is usually superficial, may benefit more mature stretch marks. If the pigmentation difference is your major concern I suggest topical bronzers if they match your natural skin tone. Skin excision will remove the stretch marks if they are located in the right areas but of course this procedure will leave you with other scars that hopefully are easier to hide.

Andrew Goldberg, MD
Fairfax Plastic Surgeon

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.