Loose Skin After Liposuction

Tomorrow is week 6 after tummy lipo. I'm 46 yrs. old (no kids) and was in excellent athletic shape before the procedure. I am stuck with what my doctor said was "loose skin" just above my belly button but it looks like a weird pocket of swelling to me and feels very tender. Is it too soon for me to be concerned? Is this going to be permanent?

Doctor Answers 4

Loose Skin after Liposuction

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I know. You have seen / heard many claims that some Liposuction techniques tighten skin. I am contacted weekly by companies wanting me to buy such magical equipment. The sad and cold fact is that there is NO SCIENTIFIC EVIDENCE (except from those doctors paid for by the top laser companies) that such 150,000 machines (names withheld to starve lawyers) tighten anything except your pocket book and mine.

When liposuction is done on loose skin, especially one masked by fat (just like a full wind makes every sail look smooth and tight, but when the wind stops...), the skin will NOT shrink to the smaller underlying scaffolding (similar to an old dress worn after you lost a lot of weight).

Without an examination much less a picture, no one can or should advise you on your options except to direct you to see one or more plastic surgeons for their objective opinions. I would pick members of The American Society of Plastic Surgeons who do NOT have to make payments on a new, 150,000 super-duper skin shrinking Lipo Laser machine. Their opinion MAY be a tad influenced by their investment.

Memphis Plastic Surgeon

Liposuction of the abdomen

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If your pocket of skin above the belly button is tender, then there  is inflammation. That may indicate that there will be continued retraction of the skin inwardly over the next couple of months. Continuing to wear the compression garment may help. See your surgeon for ongoing followup examinations and address this as time goes along. If there is a seroma, which is a liquid buildup of serum, then it may need to be drained.

Ronald Shelton, MD
Manhattan Dermatologic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

Please send pictures

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I believe you had only liposuction. The laxity of the skin will not change much after 6 weeks. You may need to have further evaluation with a board certified plastic surgeon to discuss the result and other options like mini Tummy tuck or Thermage depending on the amount of excess skin.

Kamran Khoobehi, MD
New Orleans Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 154 reviews

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Loose skin after mini tummy tuck

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Did you have a mini or full tummy tuck? If you had a mini, yes you are likely to be stuck with this loose skin. This is quite often why I recommend a full tummy tuck despite the appeal of a min tummy tuck.

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.