Body lift, also known as belt lipectomy is a procedure that serves to remove excess skin and fat from the torso. It is ideally suited for individuals who have loose, sagging skin around the abdomen, waist, buttocks, hips and thighs.
Patients who have experienced significant weight loss either through dieting or weight-loss (bariatric) surgery are often left with large folds of sagging, inelastic skin. Despite their best efforts with exercising or skin care, the skin fails to tighten and remains sagging. Body contouring surgery is the only proven option for such patients.
Am I A Good Candidate For A Bodylift?
The best candidates for a bodylift are those;
- Who are healthy but have loose, sagging skin around their torso
- Whose weight not not changed significantly during the last 6 months
- Who do not have a medical condition that could impede healing
- Who are willing the accept the scarring
- Who do not smoke
- Who have realistic expectations of the results and willing to follow all pre-op and post-op instructions
What Will A Bodylift Not Do?
Although the results of a bodylift are immediately visible, the surgery cannot stop further changes to the torso as a result of ageing and changes in weight.
It is important to understand that the final appearance of the abdomen is also dependent on abdominal muscle tone and degree of intra-abdominal fat.
What Does A Body Lift Involve?
Body lift is an extensive procedure which involves a combination of tummy tuck, liposuction, thigh lift and buttock lift. For some patients, Mr Karri may recommend splitting the surgery into two parts. The first surgery addresses the sagging abdominal and thigh skin, and the second surgery involves the buttock lift. An interval of 3-4 months is usually required between the two surgeries to ensure healing is complete after the first surgery.
Body lift is performed under general anaesthetic and may take several hours. You will be required to stay in hospital for a few days after surgery. To minimise swelling and support the new body contour, you will be required to wear compression garments continuously for several weeks.
Complications following a body lift depend on numerous factors such as general health, smoking history, previous abdominal surgery and medications. Mr Karri will explain how risks apply to you and will send you detailed pre-operative instructions to minimise these risks.
Scar / poor-scarring – a body lift scar runs circumferentially around the lower abdomen and lower back. In all patients the scar is initially red and raised but settles over several weeks. In some patients it can take a number of months for the scar to settle.
Bruising and swelling
Numbness – numbness over lower abdomen is expected and will gradually return over a number of weeks.
Bleeding and haematoma formation – excessive bleeding after surgery can occur (known as a haematoma) and may require drainage. It is important that you do not take any products containing aspirin, anti-inflammatories, blood thinners or vitamin E for 14 days prior to your operation as these medications can greatly increase the risk of bleeding.
Seroma – tissue fluid can accumulate under the skin and usually resolves over a few weeks.
Infection – rarely a severe infection can arise which may require treatment with antibiotics or further surgery. Antibiotics will be given at the time of surgery and afterwards to reduce the risk of infection.
Skin necrosis / delayed wound healing
Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) – low molecular weight heparin (LMWH) will be given for 7 days after surgery to minimise the risk of DVT
Skin relaxation – after a number of months a bulge or small roll may appear just above the scar. This represents skin relaxation and the roll can be removed with additional surgery at a lower cost.