If you’ve lost a significant amount of weight, over 75 pounds or more, you should feel proud of your accomplishment. Whether it’s via diet and exercise or weight loss surgery, you’ve put in hard work to live a healthier, better quality of life. However, even as you’ve reached your goal weight, you may not feel comfortable or confident in your body due to loose, sagging skin, cellulite, and stretch marks. This is incredibly common after extreme weight loss, and many people choose to have a body lift to complete their weight loss journey. If you’re not sure if this is right for you, Dr. Ortiz, a leading plastic surgeon in Raleigh, is providing an in-depth look at this procedure.
What Is a Body Lift?
Often, excess weight and fat stretches the skin, damaging the tissue permanently. Even after the weight is lost, the skin doesn’t bounce back, and without the fat to fill it out, the skin will droop and sag while cellulite deposits are left behind. Instead of the slim, trim figure you expected when you lost weight, the reality is much different.
A body lift, often called a belt lipectomy, is designed to help you remove the excess skin and eliminate the chafing and discomfort that the skin often causes. The excess skin is removed along with fat deposits. The muscles and deeper tissues are often repaired during the procedure.
The Belt Lipectomy Procedure
During the body lift, Dr. Ortiz makes a series of large incisions around the waist. The first series goes around the midsection, and the second series of incisions wraps around the hips, tops of the thighs, and buttocks. Combined, the two incisions form a bikini-type of outline.
Then, all the drooping skin and fat is removed from the mid-section, hips, and buttocks between the two incisions, then Dr. Ortiz will repair, lift, and tighten the remaining tissue, lifting the skin and redraping it to achieve a smoother, more contoured shape. While you’ll see immediate results, it can take up to a year for final results to be completely visible as the swelling goes down and tissues shift and shrink.
Is a Body Lift Right for You?
Typically, a body lift is the final step for many people in their weight loss journey. Because this is a serious, involved cosmetic procedure, it’s best for people who meet the following criteria:
- A BMI below 30 (though excess skin can add weight, so that can be discussed during your consultation)
- Does not smoke for six weeks before the procedure and six weeks after due to the risk of complications, including tissue necrosis.
- Achieved their goal weight and has stabilized for several months.
- Has significant amounts of loose, sagging skin.
- Has realistic goals for the outcomes of the body lift procedure.
A body lift is often performed in conjunction with procedures like a breast lift or an arm lift in order to repair tissues and remove sagging throughout the entire body while liposuction may be performed in cases of significant stubborn fat deposits.
Schedule a Consultation with Dr. Ortiz Today
If you’re ready to have a smoother, more sculpted figure after you’ve lost a significant amount of weight, we can help! Schedule a consultation with Dr. Ortiz, and he will provide you with a more personalized look at how a belt lipectomy will work for you, including the kind of results you can expect. Call us today at 919-532-2270 or fill out the form below to get started.