Body Lift

What is a Body Lift??

A body lift is a body contouring procedure also known as a Belt Lipectomy, or Lower Body Lift. The term Body Lift refers to a procedure that involves the circumferential removal of loose hanging skin and fat from around the waist or "belt" line of an individual. This procedure is usually indicated for patients who have achieved massive weight loss but are left with excess sagging skin and desire an improved body contour.

A body lift is essentially an extended tummy tuck that continues around the sides and onto the lower back, so as to reduce the "love handles", define the waist, remove excess back skin and lift the buttocks.

Fast Facts:

Length of procedure: 5- 7 hours.
Type of anaesthesia: General anaesthesia.
Length of hospital stay: 5- 7 days.
What to expect post-op: You will have drains in which will determine your length of stay. You will need to wear a supportive post-surgical garment or binder for 2- 6 weeks post-surgery.
Recovery time: Most patients return to work after approximately 4- 6 weeks.
Results: Permanent, unless you experience significant variations in weight. Final results are usually visible at 12 months.

Who might benefit from a Body Lift?

After losing a significant amount of weight, patients may find themselves with a large amount of excess sagging skin and poor body contour. For these patients, the benefits of body lift surgery include not only a better body contour and improved clothing fit, but often also improved self-confidence and ability to participate in social and sporting activities that they might have otherwise avoided.

Patients who have achieved massive weight loss may also require or desire body contouring procedures to address loose sagging skin in other body areas:

  • Breasts: Breast lift, breast implants, or breast reduction surgery can be performed in order to tighten the breast area and reduce the appearance of sagging skin.
  • Upper body lift: This procedure addresses the breasts via a breast lift or breast reduction procedure, but also extends around the back to remove the ‘upper back roll’ that develops after massive weight loss.
  • Upper Arm: Brachioplasty is a procedure which addresses the upper arm area and removes excess skin.
  • Thigh lift: A thigh lift surgery, is aimed at removing excess skin and fat of the inner thigh and lifting this area for improved contour and comfort.
  • Face and Neck: Excess skin in the areas of the face and neck is removed with a procedure much like the traditional face lift.
  • Abdomen: Some patients prefer not to undergo a body lift and may opt for a tummy tuck (abdominoplasty) only. The abdominoplasty is a procedure in which the excess skin is removed from the anterior abdominal area, and the abdominal muscles are tightened. In some cases only a panniculectomy is suitable. A panniculectomy or ‘lemon slice’ procedure is a procedure in which the overhanging “apron” of skin is removed just below the belly button area.

What does a Body Lift procedure involve?

Undergoing a lower body lift is a major decision. During your consultation, Dr do Vale will discuss and answer the questions you may have regarding a body lift, all options available to you, the risks involved, and the expected benefits and results so that together you can come to a personalised decision about your body contouring procedure.

A body lift is a surgical procedure that may take up to 7 or 8 hours and is performed under general anaesthesia. A lower body lift involves the plastic surgeon making a horizontal incision which will be hidden in the underwear area and runs right above the pubic region, from one pelvic bone to the other and around the back at the upper limit of the buttocks. Surgical markings are measured and made before going into theatre. During the procedure, liposuction is performed, and excess skin and fat are removed. Anteriorly the lax abdominal muscles are stitched together to achieve a tighter, flatter abdominal wall, the navel is also repositioned, the waistline is defined, and the pubis is reduced. From the back, excess skin is removed and pulled downward to re-contour the small of the back, and the buttocks are lifted. As a plastic surgeon, Dr do Vale’s goal is to optimise your body contour and shape by ridding you of excess loose skin and giving you an improved body contour with a flatter, abdomen and a naturally contoured waistline.

Recovery after Body Lift:

A body lift is an extensive procedure, and the recovery is longer than other cosmetic procedures. After the body lift surgery, Dr do Vale will insert drains to drain excess blood and fluid, which may determine your hospital stay duration, but normally you may stay in the hospital for 5 -7 days. You will need to wear a supportive post-surgical garment or binder for 2- 6 weeks post-surgery.

For more information on Body Lift Surgery or to find out if it’s the right procedure for you, request a consultation below or call 0109003999 to schedule your detailed consultation with Dr do Vale.