cosmetic procedures

after weight loss, plastic surgery removes excess skin and restores body shape

After Extreme Weight Loss: Plastic Surgeries Complete the Journey

in their transition from obesity to a healthy body weight, patients often require plastic surgery to
remove excess skin and restore body shape to complete their personal transformation

Extreme weight loss, the result of improved nutrition, diet and exercise, or of the growing number of bariatric procedures (banding and gastric  bypass), often leaves individuals feeling caught between the person they were and the person they want to be.

The physical toll of living with obesity for years often shows in large amounts of excess skin, and loss of face and body volume.

Though it's hardly ever touched on in media stories about those who've lost significant amounts of weight, extreme weight loss after-effects often are addressed by plastic surgery procedures.

large folds of skin may hang - from the stomach, thighs, arms buttocks and hips...

The body may be smaller, but for someone who has committed themselves wholly to changing their shape, their health and their life, the remnants of obesity won't let them see themselves as completely transformed.

Large folds of skin may hang from the abdomen, thighs, arms, buttocks and hips.

Health issues include chronic chafing, rashes and hygiene issues. The excess skin also presents an everyday problem in clothing choices, since the skin has to go somewhere.

One patient was able to prove to her insurance company the medical necessity of excess skin removal. Folds - batwings - hanging from her upper arms became caught in a recliner. Paramedics had to free her from the chair.

Skin Laxity and Common After Weight Loss Plastic Surgery Procedures

Some of the body conditions seen after extreme weight loss make plastic surgery a medical necessity.

Those who have been obese for years may lose weight and body volume. But the skin that stretched and grew to contain that weight remains. Think of a balloon that slowly deflates but retains its stretched out shape.

Generally speaking, after extreme weight loss:
. Men have better skin elasticity than women, and fewer weight loss remnants.
. African Americans fare better than Caucasians.
. Heredity plays its part in tendency towards obesity, but also, in skin laxity and signs of aging once weight is lost.
. The longer one has lived with obesity, the less elastic the skin.

Most weight loss makeover patients ask for these procedures:
. A tummy tuck (for male and female patients) to excise the abdominal skin and tighten the abdominal muscles is the number one procedure.
. For women, a breast lift to remove excess skin, and implants to restore lost tissue.
. A lower face lift to remove excess skin from the lower face and neck.
. Additional procedures may include an upper thigh lift and upper arm lift.


Seeking a board-certified plastic surgeon who can help with your after weight loss surgery? Visit, the official site of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons.

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