Not only has obesity been at epidemic proportions in this country for many years—it is actually continuing to worsen with no discernible end in sight. Fortunately, many people have come to realize, one way or another, that there are multiple negative ramifications of this condition including a litany of medical problems and risks such as diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, cancers and arthritis—and have decided to take definitive actions.
A lot of these individuals have been at least partially successful in achieving their goal to lose a large amount of weight, which often is in the range of 50 to 100 pounds or more. Some can realize this massive weight loss by adhering to a regimen of strict dieting and vigorous, consistent exercising. Others pursue bariatric (weight loss) surgery such as the lap band or gastric bypass.
Regardless of the approach, one’s health, quality of life and future prospects are improved with a substantial or even massive weight loss. You feel healthier, are more energetic and active and even look much better.
Looking in the mirror while wearing your birthday suit, you see a trimmer, smaller you though not quite the appearance that you may be proud of. Depending on the extent of your weight loss, period of time of the loss, genetics and other factors, your skin may be loose with poor elasticity and stretch marks, over-abundant, and very saggy to the point of cascading down in layers.
Now what do you do?
Fortunately, there is a wide array of plastic surgery procedures that can be performed in order to improve and rejuvenate your appearance while correcting the deformities and issues associated with your previous overweight condition and the subsequent (massive) weight loss. These can address essentially any area of the body that has suffered the consequences of weight problems such as your trunk, breasts, arms, legs and thighs, face, neck and even eyelids.
- What Are My Post Weight Loss Body Contouring Options?
- What Is Recovery Like After Post-Weight Loss Body Contouring?
- How Much Does Plastic Surgery After Massive Weight Loss Cost?
- Is Plastic Surgery After Weight Loss Covered By Insurance?
What Are My Post Weight Loss Body Contouring Options?
For patients who have experienced massive weight loss and want to correct multiple areas, an integrated treatment plan can be customized to their needs. Dr. Steven Turkeltaub will precisely evaluate your situation and then clearly and thoroughly discuss with you the recommended plastic surgery procedures and strategies.
The following are some of the most common post weight loss treatments available at the Arizona Center for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery:
- Belt lipectomy – Also known less specifically as a lower body lift, a belt lipectomy involves the circumferential removal of excess skin and fat of the abdomen, hips, outer thighs and buttocks along with lifting and contouring in order to provide a more toned, smoother, firmer and rejuvenated appearance.
- Tummy tuck – Technically referred to as an abdominoplasty, tummy tuck surgery involves the sculpting and rejuvenation of the abdomen by tightening of the abdominal muscles (if indicated) along with the removal of excess skin and fat for a slimmer, more attractive abdomen.
- Liposuction – Liposuction is a popular procedure that can be utilized to target and remove diet and exercise-resistant pockets of fat in virtually any region of the body, providing you with a thinner, more contoured figure.
- Breast lift – Also called a mastopexy, a breast lift is designed to re-elevate and contour drooping breasts for a rejuvenated appearance. During the procedure, Dr. Turkeltaub removes excess skin, reshapes the breast tissue and reduces the size of the nipple-areolar complexes based on your specific needs. If desired, breast lift surgery can also be combined with a breast augmentation to provide you with added volume, more youthful firmness and an overall improved shape.
- Male Breast Reduction – Designed to treat enlarged male breasts (gynecomastia), male breast reduction involves the removal of excess tissue, fat and/or skin in order to create a more masculine-appearing chest.
- Arm lift – Medically known as brachioplasty, arm lift surgery entails the excision of loose, redundant skin and excess fat in the upper arms, helping to achieve a more aesthetically pleasing contour.
- Thigh lift – Thigh lift surgery is conducted in order to remove loose, excess skin on the thighs for a firmer, more toned appearance. Dr. Turkeltaub can perform an inner thigh lift, an outer thigh lift or both in combination.
- Facelift – Frequently combined with a neck lift, facelift surgery can address laxity in the midface, lower face and/or neck region via the tightening of underlying muscles and the removal of loose, extra skin. For a more comprehensive enhancement, a forehead lift and/or a blepharoplasty can be performed as well if indicated.
Depending on the areas to be improved, staging of the procedures may be indicated. For example, a belt lipectomy and tummy tuck can be performed during the first session followed several months later with a breast lift with enlargement and an arm lift.
What Is Recovery Like After Post-Weight Loss Body Contouring?
Recovery after post-weight loss body contouring is quite variable, depending on a variety of factors. These can include the particular procedures performed, how many are done concurrently, the extent and complexity of each, the specific techniques employed, the total operating time and your body’s natural healing process.
When a belt lipectomy and/or tummy tuck is performed as part of treatment, most individuals will need approximately one to two weeks of recovery time before resuming office-based work and other non-strenuous daily routines. During this recuperation period, patients are instructed to regularly get up and move around to aid with healing and help diminish the risk of blood clots forming in the legs or lungs due to prolonged inactivity.
Non-physically demanding activities can typically be resumed when comfortable enough to do so, though heavy lifting and true aerobic exercise (running, cycling, etc.) will need to be avoided for about one month. By approximately eight weeks, the majority of patients are cleared of all post-surgical limitations and restrictions.
When a belt lipectomy and/or an abdominoplasty are not the particular procedures performed during a surgical session, recovery is usually quicker, easier and with fewer and shorter restrictions.
Dr. Turkeltaub can provide a personalized overview of what to expect based on the specific procedures selected at the time of your consultation.
How Much Does Plastic Surgery After Massive Weight Loss Cost?
Due to the high level of customization involved, the cost of plastic surgery after massive weight loss varies greatly. Key aspects that will affect the total expense you can expect to pay include which procedures are chosen, operative time needed, whether treatment is performed at once or in separate stages, the complexity of surgery, fees for the hospital/surgical center and anesthesiologist, the expertise of the plastic surgeon and geographic location of the practice. In addition, any medical testing, post-operative garments and/or medications that may be needed can also have an impact on pricing.
Based on data submitted to RealSelf by local patients, a body lift* in the Phoenix area costs anywhere between $6,500–$24,000. The average price among those who shared their expenses with RealSelf was $14,925.
If you are considering body contouring after major weight loss, Dr. Turkeltaub will gladly meet with you in consultation to discuss your needs and goals. Once he has a complete understanding of what you hope to achieve, he can formulate an individualized treatment plan for you as well as provide a breakdown of the total costs.
*Body lift is a general term often used to non-specifically describe an individual’s post-weight loss body contouring treatment which can be just one small area or multiple sites.
Is Plastic Surgery After Weight Loss Covered By Insurance?
Insurance coverage for plastic surgery after significant weight loss depends on the benefits and exclusions of your specific healthcare plan and whether or not your treatment is considered “medically necessary” versus “cosmetic.” In general, most insurance plans don’t cover any post massive weight loss plastic surgery except for rare exceptions. A panniculectomy (the removal of a large, hanging fat roll of the abdomen) may occasionally be approved for coverage.
Before-and-after pictures of actual patients reveal the profound effects that can result from body contouring procedures.
*Individual Results May Vary
Body Contouring Patient Testimonials*
*Individual Results May Vary
Interested in Body Contouring After Massive Weight Loss?
Contact our plastic surgery practice to schedule an initial body contouring consultation with Dr. Turkeltaub. We are dedicated to helping patients look and feel naturally beautiful.