I was a fat child. In my teens, I lost about 100 lbs. I had a consultation for Liposuction to suck of some hard areas to get rid of fat pockets, and I was told the only way I would ever look normal is through a body lift. After some extensive research I was too scared to have the procedure. Now, I'm 25 and am frustrated with my body. Despite the claim that a body lift is my only option, I'm not convinced that my body is so flabby that I need an extreme procedure like that. Do I have any other options?
Other Options for Body Lift?
Doctor Answers 7
Afraid of a Body Lift.
Many people view the Body Lift idea of being cut all the way around their body as an extreme procedure. I hear from patients that they have been told they were going to be cut in half and then put back together. What most people do not understand is the back portion of the procedure is just removing skin and fat. The front part of the procedure is where the muscles are worked on and is the cause for most of the discomfort associated with the procedure. A Body Lift procedure is really a combination of two procedures a Tummy Tuck and a Back lift . At twenty five years of age you are, in general, at one of the most healthy times in your life and have a statistically extended time left to live your life. It is well known that people who feel better about themselves lead happier and more productive lives especially when it comes to the way they look. The best advice you can have is to find a surgeon who gains your trust by listening to you and understanding your concerns. One who does this procedure often and in a safe environment and is certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, this will give you the best chance for a successful outcome. Good Luck!
Treatment Options Following Massive Weight Loss
The vast majority of patients who lose 100 pounds will develop significant amounts of loose saggy skin. Correction of this problem will almost always require a lower body lift. Lesser procedures such as liposuction won't address excess skin and can actually make the problem worse. For these reasons, a lower body lift is not only your best option, but probably your only option.
It's normal to be fearful of a large surgical procedure. Under these circumstances, you're the only one who can weigh the risk benefit ratio of proceeding with surgery. For these reasons, it's appropriate to consult a board certified plastic surgeon with experience in this area. This surgeon should be able to thoroughly discuss lower body lift surgery and, hopefully, alleviate your anxiety.
Without a physical exam it is very difficult for me to say what could work for you. If you lost over 100 lbs, it osund like a body lift is what you need.
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Body Lift after Weight Loss
Congratulations on your weight loss! That loose skin is certainly bothersome after all you've accomplished, and I understand your desire to be rid of it. Liposuction will only create more loose skin, so that's not a great stand-alone option for you. Removing the skin through a tummy tuck or body lift is really your only option to definitively manage that skin. A body lift is done to address loose skin on the tummy, the lateral thighs, and the lower back. A tummy tuck just takes care of loose skin on the tummy and part of the waist. The right procedure for you depends entirely on your goals and your health. Both can be done quite successfully, and most have few complications, fortunately.
Body Lift Options
The only to determine whether a different procedure could be useful is by examining you. I had patients who only needed a tummy tuck for that kind of weight loss. There is always skin excess problem. Hope that helps!
A 100lb weight loss is significant and will most likely leave anyone with significant skin laxity. Bulky subcutaneous fatty tissue can be removed with liposuction, but this will not help (and will probably worsen) skin laxity. Unfortunately, there is no good way to treat skin laxity except with surgery. Skin tightening procedures like lasers, thermage, etc. only work for the most minimal amount of skin laxity and certainly have no place in treating significant body skin excess. I haven't examined you, but if you are looking for a significant change, surgery is probably your only answer.
Alternatives to Body Lift
I can understand your reluctance to undergo body lift, as it can be presented as a very extreme procedure. It would be essential to understand your exact body goals, before an alternative to a body lift can be suggested. That said, the only way to treat excess, stretched out skin, after 100 lb weight loss, may be to surgically remove it - whether through a full body lift, or a series of smaller operations. I would suggest first identifying what it is exactly that bothers you about your body, and discussing this with a plastic surgeon again -- one who will take the time to understand your concerns before presenting you with a solution.
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.