Kind of Scars to Expect from Medial Thigh Lift?

I've decided to have a medial thigh lift. I'd rather have a couple of scars than loose skin. At least I can wear shorts! I'm really curious as to what to expect. I've heard of "scar migration" and the scar widening and getting larger. I've heard of holes that form, and horrible lumpy scars. But I've never seen a healed picture of the scars because they're covered by garments and closed legs! So I'd like to know what to expect. Will they flatten? Will they ever turn white, or stay lumpy and red?

Doctor Answers 14

Thigh Lift

It really depends on who does your procedure.  Thigh lift surgery is not as easy as you may think.  It needs a lot of attention for it to be done well.  When performed accuratley, the scar does not migrate much.  The incision must be placed within the groin crease.  The crease must be reconstructed afterwards meticulously.


Medial Thigh Lift scar information

The scars for the medial thigh lift are hidden in the groin area, and can sometimes extend along the inner thigh. Over time, the scars should flatten and become less noticeable. Exactly how noticeable they end up can depend on several variables.

Skin tone and elasticity will play a role, as well as color. A caucasian’s scarring will be less noticeable than the scarring on a dark skinned person. A person with good skin tone and elasticity will heal better than if the skin has poor tone and elasticity.

Generally though, the scar that is left behind is well worth being rid of the hanging, excess skin which is present before surgery. Scars can also have a vertical component along the inner thigh, depending on the quantity of skin to be removed. The best option is to speak with a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon, have them to perform a physical exam, and go from there.

Scott W. Mosser, MD
San Francisco Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Scars depend on you and your surgeon

Without a doubt medial thigh lifts are probably one of the most tricky body contouring surgeries. The key to a good scar in the medial thigh and anywhere is to have no tension on the skin when it's closed. This requires only the appropriate amount of skin to be removed AND securing the deep fascia or fibrous layer to the deep layer in the groin.

The scar also depends on your skin tone and color. A pale Caucasian will tend to scar better than a darker skinned patient. And a patient with good skin tone will scar better than one with poor tone.

So it really depends on a lot of factors. As long as your surgeon knows the anatomy and how to do the surgery and you have good skin tone you should end up with a good scar.

Medial thigh lift scar possibilities

There are two basic ways to do a medial thigh lift. One is to take a crescent of skin out from the upper medial thigh and hide the scar in the groin crease. This sounds logical, and is the more traditional technique. However, these scars can be notoriously problematic, with slow healing and frequent wound problems. Plus, the effect of this lift diminishes the farther from the groin, so it does little for the area above the knees if you have any looseness there.

The procedure I tend to prefer, especially for patients with significant weight loss and loose thigh skin from groin to knee, is a vertical approach. Although the scar does extend down the inner thigh, the contour result and the scar quality tend to be much better.

Medial thigh lift

Medial thigh lift is a major procedure with atleast 3 weeks of down time.

In medial thigh lift we fix the scar to the bone cover with permanent sutures. These sutures cause puckering of the skin initially, but these are the sutures when well placed prevent migration of the scar.

They will flatten with time. It takes a year for the scars to settle.

Samir Shureih, MD
Baltimore Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

Scars after Thigh Lift

Spend some time with your plastic surgeon. Thigh lifts are not easy procedures, but my patients have all felt the scars are worth the tightening of the skin. Find a surgeon who does thigh lifts frequently and has enough experience. I would recommend a surgeon certified by the AMERICAN BOARD OF PLASTIC SURGERY. You can find one in your area .

Jack Gelman, MD
Frankfort Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 14 reviews

Factors Influencing The Appearance Of Scars From A Medial Thigh Lift

Your question serves to underline the fact that, as with most body contouring procedures, a medial thigh lift represents a trade off between redundant, inelastic skin, and sometimes long and visible scars.  For patients with just a small degree of skin laxity in the upper thigh, the scar can be confined to the groin area, and the skin tightening and vector of lift is mainly in a vertical direction. 

For any patient with a significant degree of skin laxity, there will need to be a vertical extension of the scar that will occupy a position roughly equivalent to the inseam of a pair of trousers.  However, the circumferential tightening that is achieved by this vertical extension of the scar can have a profound effect on the ultimate tightening and contouring of the thigh skin.

The healing of scars is always an important issue for patients contemplating body contouring surgeries.  While anchoring the incision to the Colles fascia and ischial periosteum can help prevent scar widening and scar migration, perhaps the most important determinant of the quality of scar healing is the excision of just the right amount of skin, not too much, and not too little, and this can be tricky to determine in a patient with a great deal of skin redundancy, as the degree of apparent skin excess can vary with the position the leg assumes. 

 Beyond these considerations, other factors that affect wound healing include the patient's ethnicity, skin quality, and general health and nutritional status.  The good news is that some aspects of the appearance of the scars from a medial thigh lift can be improved by judicious employment of postoperative modalities such as steroid injections, silicone sheeting, and laser treatments.

Peter Lee, MD, FACS
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 47 reviews

Medial thigh lift scars

The scar for the usual medial thigh lift is placed in the groin crease, which should be covered by clothing.  Unfortunately, due to gravity, the scars may move, or migrate, down the legs to rest beyond the groin and thus not be covered by a swimsuit.  Your surgeon should be able to show you some of his results including scars to help answer your concerns.

Randy J. Buckspan, MD
Austin Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Thigh lift scars

There are a variety of different ways to perform a thigh lift surgery. The appropriate technique depends on the degree of skin laxity and also the degree of fatty excess. The length and position of the scar can vary greatly depending on how much loose skin there is in the thighs and if this isolated to the upper third of the thigh or involves the lower two thirds of the thigh. There may be a horizontal component of the scar that is in or close to the groin crease and can be both in front and under the buttock crease. There can also be a vertical component of the scar the extends down the inner thigh. These can also be used in alone or in combination. In some cases, liposuction of the thigh can greatly complement the result, especially when there is fatty excess combined with skin excess.

Scar healing and quality depend not only on what was technically done during surgery but, more importantly, on genetics. You should consult with a board certified plastic surgeon to have a better idea of what options exist for you and what the potential outcome may be.

Scarring and Thigh Lift Surgery - What to Expect

                  It’s safe to say that it’s impossible to perform a medial thigh lift without scarring.  This operation trades stretch marks and loose skin for a scar that’s hopefully well positioned.  The patient’s particular anatomy will have a profound impact on scar placement.  In the vast majority of patients the scar is positioned along the groin crease and then extended along the inner thigh towards the knee.

                  Even when extreme care is taken, wound healing problems may still occur.  It’s important to realize that wound healing is a dynamic process which varies from patient to patient.  For these reasons, scars may take over a year to reach maturity.  When scars are less than optimal, scar revision may be necessary and this usually results in a satisfied patient.  With normal wound healing and a well-placed incision, most patients are ultimately happy with this procedure.

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.