Help with Excess Skin After Baby and Weight Loss?

I used to be a small size 10 before I gave birth. I've gone right up to a size 22 now. I'm an 18, nearly a 16, and have been focusing on losing weight, but it's depressing when I look down and see this huge mass of numb skin flapped right down like a apron. How do I get rid off this? I am a single parent on income support. This is seriously affecting me as I get upset and dont' like to go outside much because it just hangs there and it's depressing. Feeling it when I walk feels disgusting. Please help me—I'm only 25 years old. Please.

Doctor Answers 8

Help with Excess Skin After Baby and Weight Loss

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The most important decision to be made before performing any surgical procedure is determining whether you are an ideal #candidate. #Weight, and more specifically body mass index (BMI), need to be considered when deciding. For instance, studies have shown that patients with BMI > 30kg/m sq (placing them in the obese category) have a higher complication rate. Therefore, it is important for patients to be as close as possible to their normal body weight prior to surgery for at least six months.

If deemed a candidate, you may benefit from a #drainless tummy tuck. Silicone #drainage tubes are used by trained Plastic Surgeons for many different operations.  The purpose is to drain extra fluid that may otherwise accumulate under the skin, fat or muscle following an operation.  Patients generally find this annoying and uncomfortable and they can impede mobility and therefore slow aspects of #healing. Over the years, surgeons have improved procedures and found ways to eliminate the need for these #drains in a variety of operations; including #tummy #tuck or #abdominoplasty.
Another option is #vaser #liposuction, either with a tummy tuck, or without. Vaser liposuction, also known as Vaser #lipo, LipoSelection or Liposuction, is an advanced body #contouring procedure that selectively removes unwanted body fat. An alternative to the harsh techniques of traditional liposuction, #Vaser lipo uses state-of-the-art ultrasound technology designed to gently #reshape your body and, yes, it can be done on the #midsection. There are three types of #Vaser Lipo. Each benefit patients differently depending on their needs.

An ideal #candidate for Vaser Liposuction is a person in good health who seeks a minimally invasive way to remove stubborn fat with less downtime than traditional #liposuction. Vaser is ideal for those seeking improved definition of muscles and contouring.  Those who seek increased sculpting of are ideal vaser lipo candidates. 

The costs of a #tummy tuck or #liposuction will depend on several factors. Such include the geographic location, the skill and experience of the surgeon, and operating room and anesthesia fees.  However, many payments plans exist for cosmetic procedures. Ask your surgeon's office about programs and lenders they may recommend as well as personal loans available through financial institutions. Begin with an in-person, one-on-one consultation to determine if you are an ideal #candidate and which technique is best for you. Most importantly, your procedures should be performed by a #Plastic Surgeon who is board-certified and has a great deal of experience specializing in cosmetic #surgery.

Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 116 reviews

Tummy Tuck May Be the Most Suitable Solution

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A tummy tuck may be the most suitable treatment for you, as it can eliminate the excess skin and fat in your mid section. However, to achieve your desired results more safely and improve surgical outcome, it's best to have a stable BMI that is ideally in the normal range. Once you reach your ideal BMI, you can consider proceeding with surgery. Financing options are available. Best of luck!

A tummy tuck will effectively remove your extra abd skin

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Lay the groundwork for a successful tummy tuck. Be sure that you are at a stable weight and that you have no untreated active medical issues. Although it is difficult, the more weight that you lose, the better your result will be and the shorter the surgery, as well.

Before your surgery, you would be well with a full medical exam and work up as well.

Be sure to perform your research on all of the plastic surgeons that you are considering. When funds are limited, complications from surgery performed by unqualified (non Board Certified) plastic surgeons are not affordable.

Excess pannus

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The best thing for you to do is to go on a diet first.  Once the weight come off with diet and exercise you can then have a tummy tuck to remove the loose skin.

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

Benefits of a tummy tuck

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You would benefit from a tummy tuck. However, you are still very young and I would recommend losing as much weight as you can before getting any surgical procedure done. Once you reach your goal weight, then you can go ahead with surgery. The reason I am suggesting this, is because you will have a longer lasting result. If you choose just to get thde tummy tuck now, your resutls will be drastic, but you may be motivated to lose more weight and may end up with more loose skin. Diet and exercise alone is not enough to get rid of all the excess skin and stretch marks. You are a great candidate for this procedure!

In need of tummy tuck without funds

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From the photo you submitted, which is very helpful, it is clear that you need this skin surgically removed. In all likelihood, your abdominal wall muscles also need to be repaired. Both of these things are done in an abdominoplasty.

Since insurance will not cover this and you are low are funds, a possible lower cost option than a private doctor is to find a hospital in your area that has a plastic surgery resident training program. A hospital that trains doctors to become plastic surgeons. At least in the US, these hospitals often have clinics which are run by the residents, who are surgeons. The residents perform the surgeries under the supervision of a fully trained plastic surgery attending. The procedures performed through the clinic are often much less costly compared to a private doctor. Hopefully this is available in the UK as well.

DO NOT select a surgeon who is not board certified, even if they are less expensive. Board certified plastic surgeons have met strict training and education requirements, have passed rigorous tests and meet patient safety criteria standards. Your safety is is the most important thing, do not sacrifice it over cost issues. Hope this helps.

Tracy Pfeifer, MD
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

A Panniculectomry Could Help!

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Your excess skin is probably not going away with just diet and exercise but would probably respond to a panniculectomy. This surgical procedure essentially removes this excess skin. Going one step further, a formal tummy tuck would then not only remove this skin but also tighten loose muscle underneath. This procedure would really be the gold standard.


Good or bad, both of these procedures are generally deemed cosmetic and, as such, are rarely covered by insurance. I would speak with a local Board Certified Plastic Surgeon to discuss your options and move forward accordingly.

Large abdominal apron following pregnancy

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Losing weight may help reduce the bulk of this mass but only surgery will eliminate it completely.

I do not understand the nuances of the NHS but you may want to discuss the medical aspects of this with your primary care physician and ask about coverage for a panniculectomy (simplest form of a tummy tuck).

In the USA, occasionally these are performed at reduce rates within the context of a plastic surgery training program. There are fantastic plastic surgery training programs in Glasgow and you may want to contact the University to see of this opportunity is available to you.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 86 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.