Can someone have multiple surgeries at the same time?

In the last 18 months I've lost 200lbs. I would like to have a lower body lift as well as thigh and arm lifts. I've seen people who had body lift and breast lifts at the same time, but never this combination. Can this be done? Or is it too much?

Doctor Answers 17

Multiple procedures after massive weight loss

Thanks for your question; after massive weight loss, it's very common to suffer deformities of the breasts, arms, abdomen, buttocks, hips, thighs and/or neck from excess skin and/or residual fat.  Many patients desire improvement in some combination (or all of these areas) through surgical procedures to remove excess skin and residual fat.  Many surgeons who specialize in body contouring procedures after massive weight loss are willing to perform combined procedures to address multiple areas in one setting.  At the initial consultation, it's appropriate to exam all of the areas to be addressed and prioritize surgical procedures based on a combination of patient goals, length of surgery, patient safety and recovery expectations.  In terms of patient safety, a major consideration is length of time of surgery.  Many surgeons will use a cut-off of six hours as an arbitrary indicator of what is a maximum acceptable length of time for a cosmetic procedure.  Some surgeons who specialize in body contouring after massive weight loss will use surgical assistants to assist in the closure of incisions while the primary surgeon continues to perform the remaining portions of the procedure.  This team approach may allow these surgeons to perform more extensive procedures (by saving time) than those surgeons who do not utilize surgical assistants.

In your specific case, whether you could potentially undergo a body lift, brachioplasty and thigh lift in one setting depends on several factors.  Theoretically, if you are at an ideal body weight and in excellent health, a surgeon with significant experience with these procedures who utilizes a team approach with surgical assistants for incision closure may be able to perform all three procedures in approximately six hours; If, however, you have lost 200 pounds, but are still at an evaluated BMI, it's likely the operative time could approach 8-10 hours; in this case, it would be recommended that you split these procedures into several operations spread out over a number of months.  As a final note, after such a significant weight loss, its quite likely that no matter how tight your surgeon can make your body lift at the initial operation, during the healing process your tissue will swell and relax, resulting in some residual abdomen of trunk deformity that could benefit from a planned second stage revision to optimize the final cosmetic result.  i.e. You may need a touch up procedure down the line anyway, so you could intentionally plan to have one of your procedure (perhaps the arm lift) done later.


Dallas Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 25 reviews

Combination surgery

Hello and thank you for your question. Congratulations on your weight loss. I specialize in post massive weight loss body contouring and sometimes will perform the 3 procedures you mentioned at one surgical session. 
Your weight needs to be ideal, as well as your health. Complication rates are higher. Recovery probably slightly longer. In general I prefer to do a lower body lift and arms or breasts or both prior to doing the thighs. Then at a second surgical session I perform the thighs possibly bra line lift, possibly reverse abdominoplasty and or face lift. 
All is dependent on how many procedures I feel necessary and which or which not you may want.
Peter Fisher M.D 

Peter Fisher, MD
San Antonio Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 48 reviews

Multiple Procedure Surgery after Massive weight loss

Congratulations, Kalliea on your weight loss and getting healthy. As my colleagues stated, there are many factors to consider when deciding on a surgeon and what combination of surgery to schedule. You should begin by researching surgeons who specialize in massive weight loss procedures who are board certified. As you know 200 pounds is a very substantial weight loss. It is of utmost importance that you have a medical workup; a full evaluation including a history and physical and blood work performed by your PCP. Due to your significant weight loss.You may want to research facilities (often these are at university settings) that have multiple surgeons working on you at once to shorten the amount of time you are on the operating room table. Often, these surgeons operate at facilities that have accommodations for postoperative care. Recovery from multiple surgical procedures can be challenging and you will need alot of support both mentally and physically. I attached a you tube video from one of my patients who had significant weight loss. She discusses her experiences. Hope this helps. Best of luck.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 72 reviews

Yes they can, but no you can't.

The answer to your first question, "can someone have multiple surgeries at the same time?" is yes.  But there are qualifying factors.  For example, a breast augmentation shouldn't be done at the same time as a Brazilian Butt Lift.  You'll need to lay flat on your stomach when in bed for 2 weeks after the butt lift, but you can't lay on your stomach after a breast augmentation.  On the other hand, you can do a breast augmentation with a tummy tuck because you'll need to lay on your back for both of these following surgery.

My answer to your second question would be no.  I think it very unwise (and tell that to all of my prospective patients) to combine procedures that exceed 6 hrs.  Most lower body lift procedures take 4-5 hrs and most full length (all the way down to your elbow) arm lift procedures take around 3 hrs.  That puts you outside the "safe" time length in my opinion.  Lastly, you'll need your arms to pull yourself out of bed after a body lift, and that would be risky/too painful after an arm lift.

You should consult with a board certified plastic surgeon whom you trust and who has experience in these procedures.  If you are unsatisfied with his or her answer, ask yourself why.  Are you just trying to get someone to agree with you even though you know the right answer isn't what you want it to be or are you not trusting of the opinion previously given?  If you answer the later, I'd recommend visiting the Utah Plastic Surgery Society website and visit with one of our member surgeons for another in person consultation.

Hope this helps.

Best of luck.

Multiple procedures

Multiple procedures can be done safely, but it depends on your health status (past medical history), your anatomy, and the amount of surgery/type of procedures to be done. In some cases, an overnight stay may be recommended. Please talk to your plastic surgeon to get their thoughts on the matter as they are most familiar with your medical history and overall health status.

Best wishes,

Dr. Basu
Houston, TX

Can someone have multiple surgeries at the same time?

   The surgeries may be performed in combination as long as the surgery is limited to 6 hours.

Kenneth Hughes, MD

Beverly Hills, CA

Can someone have multiple surgeries at the same time?

First off, congratulations on an amazing achievement. I routinely perform Lower transverse body lifts with one additional area in one setting.  That could be a thigh, arm, or breast lift and aug.  In some smaller patients, I can actually do three major areas in one setting.  I do try to keep the surgeries under 7.0 hours, and with our good OR team at Barnes West County Hospital in St Louis, this is achieved quite often. 

Multiple surgeries at same time

Yes, you can have multiple surgeries at once.  I perform many major weight loss surgeries and most of them are in some form of a combination.  Consult with a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon and discuss your options.

Chad Robbins, MD
Nashville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 35 reviews

Multiple Surgeries at one time

The short answer is YES, you can combine all those surgeries. It is common in my practice and patients appreciate just one surgery and one recovery. Discuss risks vs benefits with your surgeon for this approach and explore reasons for recommendations.
#bodylift
#combinedcosmeticsurgeries

Body Lift | Arm Lift

Thank you for your question about body lift.

To be sure, see two or more experienced, board-certified Plastic Surgeons in your area for a complete evaluation to make sure you are a good candidate and that it is safe for you to have body lift surgery.

I hope this helps.

J. Jason Wendel, MD, FACS
Nashville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 149 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.