For patients who have undergone bariatric weight loss surgery, CRS Plastic Surgery offers several procedures designed to help you take this new and exciting phase of your life to the next step. We offer all the options of surgical procedures for our weight loss patients, including a body lift, brachioplasty (arm lift), medial thigh lift, abdominoplasty (tummy tuck), and breast lift which can help you get rid of excess, loose skin and fat for tighter skin and a more toned appearance.
Major weight loss can be very rewarding but can also pose challenges. People who have lost a significant amount of weight through diet and exercise, with or without the help of bariatric surgery such as gastric sleeve or gastric bypass, often live healthier, happier, more active lives. However, some successful dieters and post-bariatric patients face a new obstacle after weight loss – excess skin. Skin that is loose or sagging can prevent you from enjoying your healthy weight. Loose skin after weight loss can also cause health issues. If you have put in hard work to lose weight, but you are frustrated that loose skin is preventing you from achieving your ideal body, we may be able to help.
What is the Right Time for Post Bariatric Plastic Surgery?
As you lose significant amounts of weight post-bariatric surgery, you may notice an increasing amount of sagging in various areas of your body. Of course, you want to address these areas! You've invested in weight loss surgery for your health and also to gain some cosmetic rewards, too! As you consider the timing of contacting an experienced plastic surgeon to discuss body contouring, it's important to keep your long-term goals in mind, as well as your overall safety as it pertains to surgical risks.
Generally, we advise against post-bariatric body contouring before you've reached your goal weight, or at least the BMI that is healthiest for your body frame. It usually takes 12 to 18 months after bariatric surgery for this amount of weight loss to have occurred. Also, you're the most ideal candidate for body contouring surgery once you've maintained a stable weight for three months. There are numerous reasons for this recommendation. One is that your body relies on positive nutritional balance for optimal healing. If you're still in rapid weight loss mode, your body isn't primed for tissue recovery. Another is that continued weight loss after body contouring surgery may noticeably degrade your cosmetic outcome.
Another aspect of timing for post-bariatric body contouring is ensuring that you have sufficient time off work to fully recover. Chances are you'll combine at least two procedures to address areas of tissue laxity and excess skin. In addition to needing at least two weeks off work, you'll also benefit greatly from gathering a strong support system around you. Family and friends will be needed to help care for children (and pets), cook or deliver meals, and also to help maintain your good spirits as you recover.
What are the Steps to Post Bariatric Body Contouring?
Your post-bariatric body contouring treatment plan will be carefully laid out by your plastic surgeon. While we often combine multiple body contouring procedures into one surgery, there are limitations. We work toward an optimal cosmetic outcome while also protecting your overall health by considering how to properly stage your makeover process. While every situation is unique, cases in which significant body contouring is planned may occur as follows:
- Stage One may include abdominoplasty with or without liposuction. The doctor may also include ancillary procedures such as breast lift, augmentation, or reduction.
- Stage Two, if necessary, may include a thigh lift or arm lift.
- Stage Three, if necessary, may address tissue laxity in the face and neck area.
A period of a few months may occur between the different stages of the body contouring process. Also, the procedures that your surgeon combines may be tailored to your needs.
Will I Have Visible Scars after My Post Bariatric Body Contouring Surgery?
You can expect to have scars related to every body contouring technique. Your surgeon will skillfully place incisions in areas where scarring will be most discreet. For example, abdominoplasty incisions are made where the scars will be hidden beneath the bikini line. Arm lift incisions are made along the inside of the upper arm, where resulting scars are only seen when you raise your arms fully overhead. Scar maturation is the final stage of surgical recovery. It can take up to a year. Once your scars have healed, they should appear very faint.
To learn more about Post Bariatric Surgery or other procedures we offer, schedule a consultation with Cosmetic and Reconstructive Specialists of Florida by calling 954.533.8029. We serve Fort Lauderdale, FL and nearby areas.