Is It Easier to Lipo Body Fat in Certain Areas?

I have had four children. My upper inner thighs are fatty, with stretch marks and loose skin hanging. I have consulted a plastic surgeon and he said that since I already have a couple of dimples, it would be difficult to treat the area successfully. Is this true? Are there certain areas where body fat is easier to treat? What options do I have for my upper inner thighs?

Doctor Answers 14

Liposuction and Skin Shrinkage

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Despite everything you hear Liposuction does only ONE THING RELIABLY - it REMOVES FAT. Skin shrinkage AFTER fat removal (by liposuction) depends on:
- the health and elasticity of your skin (Young skin will shrink better than older skin, Stretch Marks (cracks) are cracks in the skin with destroyed elasticity),
- the thickness of the skin (thicker skin shrinks better than thin skin),
- the area of the body (Back and Love Handles shrink better than inner thighs) and
- your ethnicity (Asian and Black skin shrinks better than North European skin)

From your description of 4 pregnancies, I would venture to guess that you have a muscle separation (diastasis) resulting in a pooch, loose skin and stretch marks of the lower tummy, a droopy Mons pubis and cellulite of the anterior and lateral thigh. A special Tummy Tuck named a HIGH LATERAL TENSION ABDOMINOPLASTY will correct all of this AND may improve some of the upper inner thigh skin redundancy. I would propose you do this first as it may improve things sufficiently for you. If 4-8 months afterwords, you are still not happy with the thighs, you may need a formal Thigh Lift procedure combined or preceded by Liposuction.

Dr. P. Aldea

Memphis Plastic Surgeon

Upper inner thighs

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With pregnancy, there are often large swings in weight. These weight fluctuations, especially after four children, can leave hanging skin behind. This skin is most often present in the lower abdomen, but is often in the inner thighs as well.

When skin is loose or dimpled, liposuction has a low success rate. In fact, the skin can appear more dimpled and loose after more fat is removed.

Your surgeon is wise to advise you against liposuction in this already loose area!

The good news is that for the inner thigh area, hanging skin and fat can often be removed with a medial thigh lift with the incision in the groin crease. At that time more liposuction is usually done as well. This is an excellent procedure for patients with medial thigh looseness.

Brent Moelleken, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 195 reviews

Liposuction Inner thighs

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Don't have liposuction. Why not?

  1. Your inner thighs have stretch marks. That means the skin support is gone. Liposuction will give you fat-free, saggy thighs. .
  2. Your only option - a surgical thigh lift. It removes the sagging skin, tightens the deep tissues and can liposuction at the same time.
  3. Scars are usually hidden in the groin crease.
  4. Recovery requires 2 weeks doing nothing. Otherwise you'll get an infection. You'll need a month off work. Good luck. 

Liposuction can help inner thighs

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With superficial liposuction (Gasparotti technique) and subdermal tunneling, liposuction of the inner thighs can tighten the skin quite a bit.

George J. Beraka, MD (retired)
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon

Best areas for liposuction

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Liposuction is a safe, popular, and effective way to contour the body. Liposuction can be performed in almost all areas of the body. The most important factor for a successful liposuction result is the experience of the surgeon and the quality of the skin in the area that will be treated. For this reason, it is essential that you work with a board-certified plastic surgeon was great deal of experience in liposuction and body contouring. They will be able to examine your body and determine if your skin has enough elasticity to contract after liposuction and give you a beautiful and smooth result.

Liposuction to inner thighs depends on skin quality

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If you have loose skin with stretch marks of your upper inner thighs, liposuction may not be a great procedure for you. The success of liposuction depends on the quality of the overlying skin in that area. If you have loose skin with poor elasticity, that skin will not contract and the final result could be skin with an irregular, bumpy contour. The skin of the upper inner thigh in general is more delicate than on other parts of the body (ex. abdomen) and does not respond as well to liposuction. If you have a fair amount of loose skin, you may need a procedure such as a thigh lift, to remove the skin.

Consult with a board certified plastic surgeon to determine if liposuction in this area is a good surgical option for you.

Best wishes,

Dr. Bruno

William Bruno, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 412 reviews

Candidates for Liposuction

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Although you have fatty tissue isolated in one area, the quality of the skin is very important to consider before going through with liposuction surgery. If the skin in the area is loose and stretched, it is very unlikely that the skin will bounce back, leaving with you even more loose and saggy skin. You may want to consider a thigh lift instead to help tighten the skin. It would require more scarring but will give you a better result.

Upper inner thighs beware, but there is hope!

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I agree with most of these posted that the inner thighs can be challenging from the skin laxity standpoint. If the vertical fibers in this area are left intact and the skin is addressed with a tightening technique such as laser, there may be more improvement that seen in the past.

Upper inner thighs

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 The upper inner thighs are a tough area to treat.  Liposuction may make it looser.  For some the best way to treat this area is to perform a medial thigh lift. This can often be done with a crescent excision leaving the scar in the groin crease.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

You have options.

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There are some areas of the body that are harder to treat then others. This being said, the inner thigh area is a very commonly treated area. Without examining you it is difficult to give any real recommendations. What I can say is that the way to treat the inner thigh is either by liposuction or direct excision, called a medial thigh lift. If you have loose hanging skin and stretch marks you may be a candidate for a thigh lift, which can be done a number of ways. However a medial thigh lift does leave a scar.

Hope this helps.

Kari L. Colen, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 8 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.