Body contouring typically includes surgical procedures designed to remove excess skin and fat. For discussion of procedures to remove excess fat, please see the section on liposuction. Surgery to remove excess skin is commonly requested by patients who have experienced major weight loss. It is designed to improve the shape and tone of their underlying tissue, that which supports fat and skin. With this procedure, your surgeon will remove the excess sagging fat and skin in certain areas of the body. Typically, when a person loses a large amount of weight, an apron of skin is left over and hangs down in the midsection. Not only is this an unattractive, embarrassing feature for the patient, but it can also cause him or her discomfort.
Sagging, hanging skin can also affect other areas of the body, including the breasts, upper arms, and thighs. Depending on your condition, your surgeon may recommend certain contouring procedures to target certain areas that have extensive sagging, such as a lower body lift (the abdomen, buttocks, groin, and outer thighs), breast lift (flattened breasts), arm lift (the upper arms), and/or thigh lift (the inner, outer and mid thigh).
The body contouring procedure is an especially important part of the weight loss process because it adds the finishing touch you may need to feel more confident. A person typically experiences quite a challenge to lose a large amount of weight, whether it was through natural means or surgically. So by not removing the excess, hanging skin from the body, the patient is stuck with a less-than-flattering new look and the reminder of his or her previous size and shape. Skin that has been over-stretched can lose its elasticity and will only shrink back so far as weight is lost. The remaining skin is permanent and can only be addressed by surgical removal.
Procedures such as the lower body lift, breast lift, arm lift, and thigh lift are effective reshaping surgical solutions that offer individuals the chance to start over with a new, trim appearance. Removal of excess skin always produces some scars; however, the improvement in contour is always worth it to the appropriate patient. A full consultation, including a full assessment of your particular needs and goals, can allow you to determine if this surgery is right for you.