How to Know If a Lower Body Lift Is Right for You
- 23 September 2016
- Dr. Mark Broudo
A lower body lift has the ability to dramatically improve the shape and contour of your entire lower body after undergoing significant weight loss. It can tighten and sculpt your buttocks, thighs, hips, and abdomen.
It can even get rid of loose skin that looks aesthetically unpleasant and causes mobility restrictions.
But while the results are certainly tempting, it is definitely not for everyone. If you want to undergo lower body contouring, you need to satisfy several criteria in order to be eligible for this highly taxing and complex procedure.
The following are some of the considerations that you need to think about before you commit to a lower body lift.
Significant weight loss and sagging skin
One of the biggest things that you need to consider is how much weight you have actually lost. If you have undergone extreme or dramatic weight loss and have lost 30 to 50 percent of your peak weight, then you are a good candidate for a lower body lift.
Extreme weight loss–whether caused by pregnancy, diet and exercise, or bariatric surgery—can cause excess drooping skin, fat, and tissue in different parts of your body, especially around the abdominal area. The excess skin can be a source of pain and discomfort as it can restrict mobility and lead to painful rashes, chafing, and even infection.
A lower body lift will not only relieve these discomforts brought about by excess skin, but it will also boost your self-confidence. You can wear whatever type of clothing you are most comfortable in, whether it be a bathing suit or revealing dress.
Another requirement that you need to fulfill before you get a lower body lift is a stable weight. Weight fluctuations can interfere with the results of the procedure, so most plastic surgeons recommend waiting around 18 months to two years after reaching your weight loss goals before you pursue surgery, as this gives your skin enough time to shrink as much as possible and accommodate your new body shape.
It can also help make sure that you will not regain weight after surgery, as your nutrition is already stabilized and optimized. That being said, those who are planning to get pregnant in the future is not advised to undergo a lower body lift, as the natural effect of pregnancy may reverse the outcome of your body lift.
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It is important to remember that the lower body lift should not be considered as a weight loss treatment, although it helps eliminate pockets of fat and improve the body’s contour.
You should be amenable with a large, circumferential scar encircling your waist since this is the most common type of incision used for lower body contouring. The main incision is located in the lower trunk, at the level above the pubic region and extending on each side towards the hips. This then curves upward to the top of the buttocks. If the lower body lift is combined with other surgeries, additional incisions may be needed.
In spite of this, you can be sure that your chosen surgeon will place the scar on the underwear line so that it can appear as discreet as possible. They can be easily hidden behind your underwear or clothing.
Smoking and drinking habits
Those who are planning to get a lower body lift should not be smoking or drinking excessively. Smoking and drinking alcohol slow down the healing process, making you more at risk of getting serious complications during and after surgery.
However, you can still undergo a lower body lift even if you engage in these things. You only need to quit smoking and drinking at least six weeks before your scheduled lower body contouring in order to decrease the risks associated with these practices.
Good health and mental stamina
If you are going to undergo this procedure, you have to make sure that you are in general good health without any chronic medical conditions like diabetes or heart disease. Otherwise, your poor health might not be able to take the rigors of a lower body lift. You need to obtain a clearance from your primary care physician before you undergo any type of plastic surgery.
Furthermore, cosmetic surgery—especially something as comprehensive as lower body contouring—can be a long and emotional process or many patients. You need to be in good psychological health and have the right amount of mental stamina in order to endure the long process and recovery of lower body contouring.
Another thing that you have to consider is your commitment to maintaining excellent nutrition and exercise after your surgery. This will allow you not only to heal properly but to also maintain and continue reaping the benefits of your procedure.
Immediately after surgery, you should be out of work for about three to four weeks and only resume your normal activities after six to eight weeks.
You also need to have the discipline to stay fit and healthy even after your surgery. A protein-rich diet is required before and after the procedure to fuel your recovery. Regular exercise, which can be done around eight weeks post-surgery, can prolong the results of your lower body lift.
Finally, you need to have realistic expectations about the results of your lower body lift. This procedure is not meant to be a substitute for proper diet and exercise when it comes to weight loss. While your skin will look and feel much better, you also have to understand that it might not have the same appearance as before your weight gain. It is also susceptible to the effects of aging and future weight gain.
Furthermore, even though your surgeon will work hard to make the scars as subtle as possible, those scars will still exist.
If you are still not sure whether a lower body lift is right for you, Schedule a Free Consultation with one of our highly experienced plastic surgeons here on Face + Body Cosmetic Surgery. We can help you figure out whether or not you are a good candidate for lower body contouring.