Thigh Lipo Before a Thigh Lift? (photo)

I've lost 165lbs and need a thigh-lift. I've had consults with 2 surgeons so far. One said if he doesn't do lipo in the thigh first (a few months before the lift) then I wouldn't like the result. The other didn't meantion lipo, just the thigh lift. If I just get a lift (without lipo a few months before) would the scar look bad? Would it have trouble healing? I really don't have the money to do lipo and then come back months later for the lift. I just want to fit into normal non-stretch jeans! :/

Doctor Answers 10

Thigh lift and liposuction can be performed safely at the same time


A thigh lift and liposuction of the thighs can be performed safely at the same time.  Although some liposuction would be beneficial in your case at the same time as your thigh lift, most of your contour correction would seem to be related to correction of the excess skin.  There several type of thigh lifts available to you depending on what other procedures your are considering having, financial considerations, and the length of the incision that is considered.  The best result in terms of maximum correction of the excess skin laxity will be obtained from either a vertical thigh lift (incision goes along the inner thigh from groin to knee) or the spiral thigh lift (incision wraps around thigh onto the buttock crease).  The crescent thigh lift (incision is in the groin crease) is only designed for patients that have mild to moderate laxity located in the upper half of the inner thigh.

All the best,

Dr Remus Repta

Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 162 reviews

Combination Liposuction Thigh Lift Surgery

In the vast majority of patients with thigh skin sag, there's no significant advantage to staging liposuction and thigh lift procedures. Rarely, liposuction is indicated as a preliminary procedure when it's felt that liposuction by itself might accomplish the patient's aesthetic goals. Under these circumstances, a thigh lift procedure would be utilized only if the patient developed skin sag.

In most cases, liposuction is used to fine tune the result when patients undergo thigh lift procedures. Under these circumstances, liposuction is utilized to make contour adjustments.

When surgeons perform this type of procedure, it's important to tailor the procedure to meet the patient's specific needs. If liposuction is an anticipated need during thigh lift surgery, there's probably no reason to stage the procedure.

If you're considering this combination, it's appropriate to consult a board certified plastic surgeon with experience in this area. This surgeon should be able to formulate a treatment plan that optimizes the approach to your loose thigh skin.

Richard J. Bruneteau, MD
Omaha Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 194 reviews

Thigh lift with liposuction

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. Performing liposuction of the thighs at the same time of thigh lift is safe.

Jamil Ahmad, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

Thigh Lift after massive weight loss

Generally, after losing a lot of weight it can be difficult for the skin to tighten back up again. Liposuction may remove any stubborn fat deposits in your thighs, however it has been my experience that any obvious sagging present before surgery remains afterward, and can even get worse. As a result, a thigh lift would probably be better suited. I wouldn't recommend getting liposuction then having a thigh lift afterward. You will have more scarring that what would result from liposuction alone, and the extent of it depends on the technique applied during your surgery. 

Jerome Edelstein, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 176 reviews

Medial thigh lift and liposuction

Congratulations on your weight loss. There are 2 medial thigh lift techniques used to improve the thigh contour. One is with the final incision placed only in the groin crease. The second operation will have an incision down the inseam of the leg with or without a groin crease incision. Both operations can include liposuction if it is necessary. By your photos the second operation would yield a better result and could be done with liposuction. Seek out a board certified plastic surgeon with experience is body contouring after significant weight loss.


Robert W. Kessler, MD, FACS
Corona Del Mar Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 129 reviews

Thigh lift v. liposuction

With the degree of skin laxity you demonstrate, you will need a thigh lift which can be performed with or without liposuction.  Congratulations on the amazing weight loss!  The scarring from the thigh lift would not be affected by whether the operation is combined with liposuction.  Best of luck.

Robert L. Kraft, MD, FACS
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 40 reviews

Thigh lift with liposuctioning

Philosophically, I like to look at what the patient is trying to achieve as a way of beginning the discussion then talk about how to get there. Along the way there may be compromises due to financial, scarring or recovery reasons. In that regard you need to express what bothesr you and what you would like to see as your final result. There are many different ways and combination of procedures to improve the way weight-loss-thighs look. The use of liposuction ahead of time will generally give a better result in the long run but costs more in the long run and involves two operations. Your pictures would indicate that you could probably get a fairly good result with a thigh lift without prior liposuction. The next question is whether to do a groin only incision, down the thigh incision or both. That decision is again based on the desired result vs the amount of scarring. 

John P. Stratis, MD
Harrisburg Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 34 reviews

Medial thigh lift

It seems from the pictures posted that you will do well with a vertical scar medial thigh lift.

If you accept having a scar on the inner thigh from groin to knee.

In my practice I do some liposuction at the same time to refine the results. Also may add a groin scar to refine the results further.

Samir Shureih, MD
Baltimore Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 7 reviews

Thigh lift

From your photos it is apparent your problem is mostly extra skin. I failed to see how a liposuction staged at a separate earlier surgery is necessary or helpful. Most surgeons do not do it that way. The size of the incision and subsequent scar is dependent on the amount of extra skin removed and the pattern of skin removal not the amount of fat under the skin.

I hope you realize that this format of posting questions and receiving answers lacks the face to face direct communication required for you to make an informed decision regarding your surgery.

My response to your question/post does not represent formal medical advice or constitute a doctor patient relationship. You need to consult with i.e. personally see a board certified plastic surgeon in order to receive a formal evaluation and develop a doctor patient relationship.


Aaron Stone, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

Thigh lift procedures

Congratulations on your weight loss.  Plastic surgery after weight loss is different than plastic surgery on a non-weight loss patient.  It would be best for you to seek surgery from someone who deals with weight loss plastic surgery.  With significant weight loss, most patients develop thigh laxity in 2 dimension.  Vertical laxity as well as horizontal laxity.  Unfortunately, you seem to have both.  Thus a simple lift may not get you what you want.  In terms of choices, these are the available procedures for the weight loss patient in my practice.

1) Vertical thighplasty with simultaneous liposuction.  This procedure will remove the excess inner thigh skin through an incision that goes from the pubic area to the inner knee. This will result in reduction of your though horizontally.  This is not a lift.

2) Spiral thigh lift- This procedure is a modified inner thigh lift.  The incision is placed under the buttock crease and then runs through the groin crease.  Through this one spiral incision, the back of the thigh, the inner thigh, and the thigh front are lifted.  This procedure is a more comprehensive lift than the inner thigh lift only.

3) Outer thigh lift.  This lifts the outer aspect of the thigh.  It can be done as an extension of the Spiral thigh lift or with a lower body lift.  Combined with the Spiral thigh lift, it will give you a circumferential thigh lift correction.


For more information, and to see pictures, see my website link below.

Siamak Agha, MD, PhD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 106 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.