Belt Lipectomy – Resize & Reshape Sagging Body Contours
Learn More About Body Lift & Arm Lift
A body lift, also known as a belt lipectomy, is a surgical procedure to raise and reshape unsightly, sagging body contours. Body lifting can also improve indented or irregular skin. Body lift procedures are designed to remove loose skin and related fat deposits, providing firmer skin and enhanced tone. Body lifts are also used to remove cellulite. Depending on your goals, the amount of excess skin and fat, your tissue structure and muscle form Dr. Craft will work with you to create a body lift plan.
Body Lift/Arm Lift
A complete lower body lift includes the buttocks, the lower torso and abdomen, waist, hips and thighs in one procedure. Because lift surgeries are not designed specifically to remove excess fat, liposuction is often used with body lift procedures.
An arm lift can be performed on the upper arms to remove excess skin and skin sagginess. Due to substantial weight gain and loss, aging and gravity or genetic disposition, some individuals experience excess skin or skin sagginess in the under area of the arms. An arm lift in combination with other areas during a body lift or on its own can remove the excess skin, tighten and tone this area of the body. Liposuction may be used in conjunction with the lift to give the best results possible.
After substantial weight loss (100 pounds or more), excess skin, loose tissue or alterations in body proportions are common. These folds of skin are usually evident around the abdomen, arms, thighs, breasts, buttocks and face. The excess skin may have loss firmness and pliability and is unable to conform to the new body shape. Because of these issues, getting rid of the excess skin through diet and exercise is unattainable. This excess skin can make it challenging to find form fitting clothing, may be a constant reminder of their lives pre-weight loss, and can increase susceptibility to skin disorders and infections. For these patients, body lifts can improve the contour and tone enhancing and improving body augmentation. Depending on body proportions, natural body tone and firmness, patients may choose a body lift to contour their body, developing and enhancing their overall features.
Candidates for Body Lift
Not everyone who has experienced significant weight loss is a candidate for a body lift. Suitable candidates who may find body lifts beneficial include:
- Individuals who have experienced substantial weight loss (100 pounds or more).
- Individuals who have reached their target weight and/or have stabilized their weight loss and gain. This is essential as considerable weight loss following the surgery may cause additional excess skin and problems experienced pre-surgery, while substantial weight gain may cause scars and stretch marks. It is generally recommended to wait 2 years after reaching your target weight. This enables time for your skin to adjust and ensures weight maintenance.
- Individuals without co-morbidities or other factors that may impede healing post- surgery.
- Individuals with a body mass index that is below 35, and preferably less than 30. As the BMI increases, the complications post-surgery also increase.
- Individuals who do not smoke.
- Individuals who are committed to healthy eating and a healthy lifestyle.
- Individuals who have good mental health.
The precise procedure varies with each patient, depending on the body type and desired surgical outcome. If you just have sagging skin and fat in specific area of your body, your surgeon may recommend less complex surgical interventions to your lower, upper and abdomen. This is considered a less invasive body lift and your surgeon will remove smaller portions of skin and fat.
In contrast, a total body lift involves removing excess skin, fat and tissue from various areas of your body including the abdomen, arms, breasts, thighs, hips and buttocks. If you have a lot of fat your surgeon may recommend liposuction to be performed in conjunction with the body lift.
Depending on the areas of your body involved in a body lift and the recommended procedures, your surgeon may choose to break the procedures up into several surgeries rather than perform them all at once.
Generally, a total lower body lift repairs the buttocks, abdomen, hips, waist and thighs in one procedure. An incision is made around the circumference of the body to remove the excess skin and fat, repositioning and tightening the tissue.
Body lift surgery that repairs the abdomen and back area involves an incision at the wait and removing the access skin and fat, repositioning and tightening the tissue. The size of the incision is dependent on the amount and location of excess skin and fat to be removed.
Depending on the amount of fat, your surgeon may use a combination of liposuction and body lift techniques to develop an overall enhanced contour. There are three methods of liposuction. All three methods involve detaching and isolating fat for removal. Once the fat is dislodged, the surgeon makes very small incisions in the skin and inserts very small tubes called cannulas into the incisions. The surgeon then removes the fat through the cannulas.
All body lift surgeries are performed under general anesthesia. You will be kept overnight for one to two days. The time of the surgery differs and is dependent on the type of body lift.
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Your surgeon will give you a physical activity schedule for your recovery. For the first few weeks days you will be instructed not to stand up straight fully, but instead to stay slightly bent at the waist. You may need to wear a support garment.
As the body recuperates, the patient can expect some swelling, and discomfort. Medication can be prescribed to relieve any pain caused by the procedure.
The stitches will be removed shortly after the surgery depending on the procedure(s) involved. Your surgeon will give you instructions for follow-up appointments as necessary. Although there will be scar, your surgeon may recommend scar diminishing cream. With time the scar will become less prominent.
Normal activities can usually be resumed within three to six weeks. It may take up to a year for the body to completely adapt to the new abdominal configuration but with proper diet and exercise the striking results of the surgery will be long lasting.
Generally, post-operative instructions call for plenty of rest and limited movement in order to speed up the healing process and recovery time.
- The surgical sites will be covered in bandages.
- Your surgeon will give you instructions on providing an optimal environment for wound healing.
- Small tubes or drains may be placed under your skin to ensure excess fluid is safely removed from your body. Dr. Craft will give you detailed instructions on caring and emptying these drains.
- You may be prescribed medication to take after your surgery.
A body lift is a complex surgery and in order to achieve a positive outcome safely it is important to have the procedure done by a surgeon who has advanced training and the surgical expertise in performing body contouring procedures after weight loss. Dr. Phillip Craft is a board-certified plastic and reconstructive surgeon specializing in aesthetic surgery of the breast, body and face. To learn more, contact our team of medical professionals today to schedule a consultation with one of the top surgeons in Miami. Dr. Craft will answer all of your questions and concerns in order for you to make an informed decision and guide you on the best body contouring procedure so you can achieve the body of your dreams.