What Kind of Surgery Do I Need to Slim Down Leg Calves and Thighs

i got super thick leg calves and thighs, everything on me is thin but my leg calves/thighs so what kind of surgery is there to reduce this part of the body? what are the dangers/side effects and is it painful? thx, i heard it's possible to reduce them but i don't know which surgery is used

Doctor Answers 10

Slimming down thick thighs and calves - very frustrating

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When I see a patient who has the unfortunate genetic trait of thick thighs and calves that don't come close to matching the rest of their body, I am at a loss at what to offer.  The classic answer is liposuction.  However, the truth is that these people want "normal" thighs and calves that match the rest of them, not just a little thinning.  And if you can't point with one finger to high point areas of concern, and instead wave your hand like a paint brush at an entire region and want it "gone", liposuction will never make you happy.

The expectation mismatch this creates leaves them forever wishing for more.  I even had one of these ladies in whom I removed 2500 cc on each thigh and it still didn't make enough difference for her to love the result.  So, this is one of the areas where I don't have a great solution to offer...Overdone liposuction is worse than no liposuction also because its damage can't be repaired.

Cankle solution

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Liposuction as an outpatient procedure under I.V. sedation can easily reduce the bulge that some people have in their ankles. The skin typically retracts well and the incisions are easily hidden in the body's natural contours in the sides of the ankles. Because a procedure on such bony body parts requires delicacy, I use several innovative forms of liposuction, including SmartLipo, in order to contour and resculpture the area while providing the most beautiful results with minimal scarring. SmartLipo, used in combination with other forms of liposuction or alone, is a procedure that uses laser light to liquefy fat and tighten the surrounding skin. It involves less downtime and side-effects than traditional liposuction and is particularly good for small areas of fat deposits like the ankles. New technology that's gentler and faster than ever before not only allows the removal of fat, but also resculpts the body.

When looking for a surgeon for something very specific, such as liposuction of the calves and ankles, it is important to find a doctor who routinely performs the procedure and who can show you before and after pictures of patients that they have operated on. These images will not only give you a sense of the surgeon’s skill, but will help you to better visualize the procedure for yourself.

Michelle Copeland, MD, DMD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

Liposuction risks increase further away from the trunk.

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While circumferential thigh liposuction is commonly practiced, PS' enthusiasm for liposuction of the calves and ankles has been decidedly luke warm because the incidence of complications and patient dissatisfaction is typically higher in these zones.  Many thick calves are the result of large gastrocnemius muscles, which in turn, is genetically determined.  In reviewing the French and Chinese PS experience with removal of strips or subtotal muscle belly excision, I've been impressed that the post-op results were not dramatically better for the exchange of a scar.  Ambulation becomes much harder because of pain and swelling, so the theoretical risk of clot development is real.  If a clot develops in the calves, (deep venous thrombosis) this can, in principle, travel to the lungs and cause significant health problems.  Try any nonoperative options before proceeding.  good luck.

Lavinia K. Chong, MD
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 59 reviews

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Reducing thighs

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Liposuction is helpful in any area there is fat distribution including the calves, thighs and even ankles. If there is loose skin, then a thighplasty could help. These all can usually be done as an outpatient with a recovery of about two weeks. I prefer the liposuction for it avoids large scars.

Edward J. Domanskis, MD
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Thick legs

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Some people are born with hypertrophic muscles but this is much more rare than being born with a predisposition to have a larger subcutaneous compartment (fat layer). In order to reduce the thighs and calves enough to make a visible impact, the amount of fat needed to be removed would be evaluated by the surgeon examining you.  Only then could the risks of the procedure and possible results be discussed. 

Ronald Shelton, MD
Manhattan Dermatologic Surgeon
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Large calves and ankles.

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This is far more common in asia. Reduction in the muscle is accomplished with literally resecting the muscle. In the States, liposuction of the subcutaneous fat is more commonly performed and can reduce the thickness of the fatty (adipose) layer if this is the primary contributing factor to your large calves and ankles. There are no accepted methods for reducing "big bones"

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

Slimming down calves and thighs

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Large calves and thighs may be the result of fatty deposits, enlarged bones and muscle, or a combination of all three.  If is difficult to give advice without the benefit of seeing you in person or photographs. If the enlargement is due to fat deposits, then liposuction may be the solution. I would recommend a consultation with a Board-certified plastic surgeon.

Best regards, Andrew Lyos, MD, FACS

Andrew T. Lyos, MD, FACS
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 65 reviews

Liposuction works to slim down legs.

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Of course you need to be examined, because large thighs and legs are not always due to too much fat. But liposuction works for most women.

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

Slim Down Leg Calves and Thighs

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This is a concern to many patients. Options are some type of liposuction. But without an in person examination impossible to be sure of the exact operation. Seek in person opinions. 

Treating thighs and calves

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Without an exam it is hard to say what would be best for you.  Usually liposuction can help many patients whose lower extremities are out of propotion with the rest of their body, but an exam would be madatory before saying for sure.

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