Grade 3 Apron Complication?

Hi, I lost 140# from bariatric surgery. I fluctuate 10-20# but, have stabilized @ 210. I have a grade 3 apron. I read that the higher the grade the more complications? Other than the normal complications, what other complications are they speaking of? Approx how much skin/fat removal from a grade 3 wt be? Thank-you for your time. Laurie McMillan

Doctor Answers 2

Grade 3 Apron Information

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Dear Laurie:

Higher grade aprons do mean higher chances of complications.  However this does not mean we should not undergo the surgeries.  It just means the surgery is riskier.  Typical complications that occur with larger aprons include wound breakdown and blood clots.  The amount of skin removed from a grade 3 apron should be determined by your surgeon.  However the skin and fat that is typically removed would be from the pubic region to well above the umbilicus.  Without pictures, I would estimate approximately 12 to 18 pounds.

Thank you,

J. Timothy Katzen, MD, FACS

Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 254 reviews

Grade 3 Apron Complication after TT

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A grade 3 apron in overhanging abdominal skin that reaches the upper thigh. When an abdominoplasty is being contemplated, the more excess tissue there is the longer the operation and the more the risk of complications, including:

  • bleeding
  • infection
  • blood clots in the legs and lungs
  • wound breakdown
  • wound ischemia (inadequate blood supply)
  • fluid collections (seroma, hematoma)
  • and perhaps most troublesome, need for touch up surgery as the skin continues to stretch and lose elasticity after surgery. 

The amount of skin and fat removed should be enough to resolve the overhang, and how much that is in terms of inches and pounds I wouldn't make a guess without at least some photos.

Thanks for your question, best wishes. 

Jourdan Gottlieb, MD
Seattle 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.