A lower body lift is the biggest procedure that I can offer a patient that has lost significant weight. It basically combines three procedures in one. It's a tummy tuck, a lateral thigh lift as well as a buttock lift. It basically allows me to circumferentially shape a patient's body after they have lost significant weight. The recovery from a lower body lift really, I think, depends on the patient. Some patients they can have a quicker recovery of sometimes one to two weeks. For some patients it can take a little longer, up to two to three weeks. I generally tell patients ideally if they can take two weeks off from work that would give them the most time to recover. Some of my patients are able to telecommute in my area so they work from home for a week and I think that sort of gives them a nice transition to go back to the office. I think the most difficult part for them is really sitting for a prolonged period of time. That's what's most challenging. It's not that they can't go back to work when they feel ready to go back to work. It's just working an eight-hour day can sometimes just be a little challenging.

Scaring is always the biggest question for a lot of our patients, and the reality is with any of these after weight loss surgeries, you're going to have an incision that may trade off with a scar. For a lot of these procedures, the real factor that's going to determine your scaring is genetics, and so obviously we try and do things to minimize scaring like minimize tension, at times use scar creams and Silicon sheeting in patients, but the biggest determinant of scaring is unfortunately the genes you inherited from your parents. If you had any previous surgeries that's going to really be your best gauge for scaring. If you are a bad scarer in other areas, that may be a determinant of how you're going to scar with an elective procedure. For some patients, they've had cuts and bruises that weren't treated by a surgeon or they had an infection or other things, so that can really make you scar badly so it's sometimes difficult. It also depends on the body part as well. Some parts scar better than others. The chest and the nipple area generally for most patients heal quite well whereas the lower abdomen or sometimes parts of the back can be sort of a tougher area, so not only is it your genetics, but the tension and tightness of the wound, as well as any other factors that can happen during your surgery.

What Procedures Are Part of a Lower Body Lift?

Dr. Joseph Michaels breaks down one of the largest procedures in plastic surgery: the lower body lift.