Body Lift - A body lift improves the shape and tone of the underlying tissue that supports fat and skin. Excess sagging fat and skin are removed to treat conditions caused in part by poor tissue elasticity. A body lift is a combination of a tummy tuck to the front and back of the abdomen and the thighs. It can be done in one operation or several stages. It uses a combination of liposuction and direct removal of skin. A body lift is a term that doesn't mean the same thing to all doctors that perform it so be sure to have your doctor explain their version of a body lift.
Body contouring is a general term that refers to removal of excess skin or fat after pregnancy, weight loss or to return the body to a more youthful appearance. It does not refer to a specific procedure.
What should I expect?
What it won't do:
The removal of excess fat is not the only use for body lifts. Liposuction can be used to remove excess fat deposits where skin has good elasticity and is able to naturally conform to new body contours. It is in cases where the patient has bad skin elasticity, a combination of liposuction and body lift techniques may be recommended. This is not a weight loss surgery but best suited for patients that have excess hanging skin after massive weight loss.
What to expect?
Your results will be visible almost immediately. However, the full outcome will not fully develop until one or two years following the procedure. Scars will remain and with age your body may lose firmness, however with proper maintenance of your weight and fitness, your results should be long-lasting.
Amount of excess skin, location of skin to be removed, personal preference and surgical judgment determine incision length and pattern. A complete lower body lift treats the buttocks, abdomen, waist, hips and thighs in one procedure. A circumferential incision around the body removes an apron of excess skin and fat and repositions and tightens contour. Sutures are placed deep within underlying tissues to form the newly shaped contours.
How should I prepare?
If you are a massive weight loss patient, be sure you have stopped losing weight and your weight has stabilized for at least 3 months before considering a body lift. Refrain from taking aspirin, ibuprofen or certain herbal supplements, as these can increase the chance of bleeding. Be sure to disclose everything you are currently taking, regardless of how menial. Stop smoking and all other nicotine products several weeks prior to your procedure. Your surgeon will discuss the recovery with you as well.
What are the risks?
If you are smoking or having your tummy tuck in combination with an abdominal hernia repair, you risk having the incision breakdown and required gauze dressing changes and worst of all, navel necrosis when the "belly button" does not have enough blood supply and dies. This will leave a scar in place of your navel.
How do I ensure my safety?
Be sure you have this procedure performed by an appropriately trained plastic surgeon in an accredited facility. Also, ask to see photos of previous results.
What will recovery be like?
Dressings will be applied to the incision site after you procedure is complete. Multiple drains will be placed under your skin temporarily in order to drain excess blood or fluid. These drains and any non-absorbable stitches will be removed within 1 to 2 weeks after your operation. Also, you will need to wear a tight fitting garment after surgery to help with swelling and improve the contour of your skin.
How much does it cost?
In the United States, the average cost of a body lift is $15,919, according to BuildMyHealth's Pricing Database.This includes costs of anesthesia, operating room facilities, and other related fees.
See more detailed pricing for this procedure
Prepare for your consultation. View these common questions you should ask your surgeon.
Arm Lift, Tummy Tuck, Thigh Lift, Liposuction to Inner and Outer Thighs, Knees, or Ankles