Removal of Excess Skin After Weight Loss

Losing 100 pounds or more is an exciting accomplishment. Even so, it’s not unusual to be frustrated by folds of hanging skin that fitness programs can’t fix. At Faith Regional Physicians Services in Norfolk, Nebraska, we offer skilled, safe procedures to help. 

Our board-certified plastic and reconstructive surgeon performs body contouring to surgically remove and tighten loose skin. Your surgeon removes stubborn fatty deposits and reshapes problem areas inside and out. The doctor combines procedures to lift and smooth the arms, breasts, belly, legs, and more to finetune your new and improved body.

Body Contouring Surgery  

After bariatric surgery or other major weight loss, diet and exercise don’t restore skin that’s lost elasticity and shape. Body contouring can enhance your body in these and other ways:

  • Improve the shape of underlying support tissue
  • Remove folds of hanging skin
  • Tighten and lift skin
  • Remove small, fatty deposits

Surgery to remove excess skin after weight loss could be an option if you meet these and other guidelines:

  • Your weight loss has stabilized.
  • You’re in good health.
  • You don’t have medical conditions that could affect healing or increase surgery risk.
  • You have a positive outlook and realistic expectations.
  • You’re committed to healthful habits, including diet, nutrition, and fitness.

If you’re thinking about body contouring, schedule a free consultation with a board-certified plastic surgeon at Faith Regional. You’ll learn more about which approaches may be right for you.

Meeting with the Surgeon

During an office visit, the plastic surgeon discusses your condition, expectations, and goals. The doctor considers your body size and shape, health, age, and other factors. You’ll learn more about recommended procedures and what to expect.  

At Faith Regional, we use tools such as advanced 3D imaging technology to help you visualize and discuss your potential results using your own simulated image.

Body Contouring Procedures

Body contouring procedures vary, depending on your condition and care plan. Your surgeon may combine surgical and nonsurgical procedures such as:     

  • Arm lift – Corrects sagging skin on your upper arms
  • Breast reduction and lift – Removes excess tissues, lifts and shapes sagging, flattened breasts
  • Lower body lifts – Trims and reshapes abdominal “apron” of overhanging skin, treats thigh and other skin, including tummy tuck, buttocks lift, and thigh lifts
  • Liposuction – Loosens and removes fatty deposits
  • Nonsurgical fat reduction – Varied methods such as heating or cooling technology, injected medicine, and other fat-reducing techniques
  • Skin rejuvenation and resurfacing – Includes nonsurgical procedures to smooth and enhance skin

Risks of Body Contouring Surgery

Every surgery carries some risk of complications. Your doctor will discuss potential risks and benefits based on your procedure, condition, health history, lifestyle habits, and other considerations.

Potential risks of body contouring surgery include:

  • Bleeding
  • Blood clots
  • Changes in skin sensation
  • Excessive or unsightly scarring
  • Fluid accumulation
  • Infection
  • Poor wound healing
  • Reaction to anesthesia
  • Results not as expected
  • Skin loss
  • Uneven or irregular contours

Body Contouring Surgery: What to Expect

During office visits, your doctor evaluates your health and checks for underlying conditions.   Body contouring surgery is done at Faith Regional Health Services, which includes inpatient and outpatient services.

Before your scheduled surgery, notify the doctor’s office of changes or concerns. Feel free to ask questions at any time, before and after procedures. You’ll have 24/7 contact information.

Preparing for Surgery

Your doctor and health practitioners at Faith Regional will give you individualized instructions depending on what procedures you have. You’ll learn specifics, including where to where to go and what to do on the day of your surgery.

  • Before surgery, you’ll receive medicine for your comfort. You may have an IV line placed in your hand or arm. If you have general anesthesia, the anesthesiologist delivers medication through a mask. You won’t feel anything during your procedure.
  • The surgeon makes incisions depending on which areas of the body are treated. The doctor works on one body area or procedure at a time, in stages. The shape, size, and length of incisions will depend on how much loose skin you have in each area.
  • For body contouring, large incisions are necessary to remove a significant amount of tissue. The doctor makes every effort to locate incisions strategically so scars are not easily visible and can be hidden by most clothing styles.
  • For each area treated, your surgeon tightens and repairs skin and underlying tissues or muscles.
  • Your surgery may include other treatments, such as liposuction to loosen and suction fat, or other fat-reduction methods.
  • The doctor pulls the skin together, trims it, and secures it, using stitches or other suturing methods. Your surgeon covers surgical incisions with sterile bandages.
  • You’re taken to a recovery room for monitoring while you awaken. Once your condition is stable, you’ll go to a hospital room to rest.

After Body Contouring Surgery

Your doctor will discuss your individual recovery process and time at pre-surgery appointments.

  • After surgery, a nurse monitors your condition. Your doctor examines your incisions and discusses your follow-up care and other details.
  • You may have small, thin tubes under the skin to drain excess blood or fluids. Your doctor removes them at a later office visit.
  • You can expect redness and swelling for a week or more. Your doctor will give you medication and discuss ways to manage discomfort.
  • You’ll learn about careful wound care, medications, and how to spot early signs of potential complications. Report any unusual symptoms right away.
  • Your doctor will talk to you about follow-up appointments and care. We encourage you to ask questions if anything is unclear.

Home Care and Recovery

Follow all care instructions to ensure safe healing and successful results.

  • Once you’re home, take it easy and be careful not to bend, strain, or lift for several days or weeks.
  • You may have to sleep with pillows that elevate your knees. This helps to lower the risk of blood clots.
  • Get up and walk as soon and as often as possible, and drink plenty of fluid as you heal.

Results of Body Contouring Surgery

Results vary and some people need additional procedures to achieve the desired outcome. Generally, results include:

  • A slimmer, more balanced, and evenly proportioned shape.
  • Immediate relief from the discomforts of excess hanging skin. Clothes fit better and most people notice improved confidence and self-esteem.
  • Results are long-lasting, but it’s important to follow all of your surgeon’s instructions and maintain a steady weight and a healthy, fit lifestyle to stay in good form.
  • Surgical scars fade over time, but some scarring remains. You can ask your doctor about ways to encourage healing and limit scarring.
  • Skin naturally loses firmness as you age, but most of your improvements will remain.

Your Plastic Surgery Team

At Faith Regional, your plastic surgeon, a specialized nurse and other healthcare professionals such as an advanced care practitioner and aesthetician may be involved in your care.

Dr. Mark Shashikant

Schedule a Consultation

You can reach us at 402-844-8167 or email frpsclinics@frhs.org to schedule an appointment.