Plastic Surgery Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
When is the right time after gastric bypass or massive weight loss to undergo a body lift?
Typically no earlier than 1 year in Dr. Spence's practice, by this time most patients should be within a few pounds of their final stable weight.
I had gastric bypass, when my weight has stabilized I would still like to lose a few more inches. Could I have liposuction with my body lift?
Yes, liposuction can be performed safely in conjunction with a body lift; most frequently around the waist and thighs to improve ones body proportion.
Can I have my entire body lift performed at once: face, breast, arms, thighs, buttock, and abdomen?
Though some surgeons do this, Dr. Spence prefers to break up these procedures; thereby shortening the length of time of any one operation, speeding recovery, and maximizing patient safety.
Will I end up with a flat buttock following a body lift?
No, for those patients that prefer a fuller buttock with a body lift, the redundant skin and fat that would normally be cut away around the waist can be used to enhance buttock fullness. Fat grafting can also be performed.
What if I gain or lose weight after my body lift?
Significant weight gain or loss can dramatically affect the results of a body lift. For example, weight loss can lead to recurrent excess skin and weight gain can lead to loss of contour.
I have had a previous tummy tuck, can I now get my buttock and thighs lifted alone or do I have to have my tummy tuck done again?
No, if you are satisfied with your tummy tuck it does not have to be done again. An extension of the tummy tuck incisions can be used to lift the buttock and thighs.
I had difficulty healing after my gastric bypass; will this affect my body lift?
Possibly, it is important that you inform Dr. Spence of this so an evaluation can be performed.
What is staged body contouring?
For those patients that have plateaued from their weight loss, but are not yet candidates for a body lift, aggressive liposuction is performed as a first stage procedure. In 8 to 12 weeks, once their swelling has subsided, they are then candidates for a body lift.
What is the difference between a belt lipectomy and a body lift?
Some patients have accumulated fat and excess skin around the abdomen, back, and waist but their lateral thighs are in good shape. In a belt lipectomy the excess skin and fat is removed circumferentially and the skin is sutured. In a body lift the thighs and buttock attachments are released and these structures are lifted.
Will insurance pay for my body lift?
In some instances insurance carriers will cover these procedures after massive weight loss. Please note that Dr. Spence does not participate in any insurance plans. If you are seeking such a physician, please contact your insurance company. Dr. Spence's practice offers a wide range of financing options for these procedures.
What is included in a lower body lift?
In Dr. Spence's practice a lower body lift includes lifting the buttocks and lateral thighs, along with a high lateral tension tummy tuck. This typically requires at least an overnight stay in a monitored facility. The second stage typically includes a breast and arm lift along with a medial thigh lift.
I have excess skin from weight loss on my arms along with some fat; will liposuction alone work for my arms?
If the skin on your arms has been stretched from weight gain and there are a lot of stretch marks, liposuction alone may not be enough and an arm lift may be necessary to contour the arms. Talk to Dr. Spence during your consultation about short scar arm lift techniques to avoid lengthy scars on the arms.
What can be done about the excess skin and fat on the side of my chest from massive weight loss?
If the hanging skin has good tone with some fat, it may respond to liposuction. If not, direct excision of the skin is the other option. There must be a plan to treat this scar aggressively, as there is no place to conceal it in a body crease.
The responses to Frequently Asked Questions listed here are not intended to be medical advice, but are the practice of Dr. Spence and will vary from surgeon to surgeon and patient to patient.
To schedule a consultation with Dr. Spence at Hillcrest Plastic Surgery, call 407-999-2585 or request a consultation online.