What is a Thigh Lift?
Cosmetic surgery of the thigh is an important part of lower body rejuvenation. The surgery, which ranges from fairly minor to quite extensive, can provide improvement in the shape and contour of the thighs. There are procedures for both the inner thighs and outer thigh and hip regions. The most common reason patients undergo surgery is to remove excess skin and smooth out unsightly contours. The procedure is often combined with other procedures including abdominoplasty, belt lipectomy, and buttock lift (gluteoplasty) which can result in a dramatic change.
Who is a Good Candidate for Thigh Lift?
The best candidates for surgery are those with excess skin and are often those patients who have lost considerable weight by diet, exercise, or after bariatric surgery. A true thigh lift, medial (inner thigh) or lateral (outer thigh), may involve considerably long incisions and the resultant scars. This is the trade-off many people are willing to make for improved contour.
During your Consult
At the time of your consultation we will review your goals. Dr. Brown will evaluate your medical conditions, drug allergies, current medications/herbal supplements and prior surgical history. He will ask about your general health and stability of your weight.
He will examine thighs and legs, take measurements, and finally take photographs. If there is significant fat Dr. Brown will discuss the utility of a staged liposuction procedure. From that information Dr. Brown will recommend a course of treatment, likely outcomes, and discuss potential complications as well as the type of anesthesia.
Prior to Surgery
To get ready for surgery there are a number important steps. We will obtain recent blood work and sometimes obtain medical clearance from your primary doctor
You must stop smoking. In most cases Dr. Brown will not perform a thigh lift on anyone who is actively smoking. You must avoid taking Aspirin, anti-inflammatories and herbal supplements for 3 weeks prior to surgery as these can increase the risk of bleeding. Certain hormones must also be stopped as these increase the risk of Deep vein thrombosis.
Medications are administered for your comfort and most cases these surgeries are performed with deep sedation or general anesthesia.
Prior to surgery several marks are made on thighs to determine the amount of skin to excise. If there is excess fat liposuction is carried our first, followed by skin excision. The skin is then adjusted, as well as inset in the inner thigh to create the best contour. The skin is excised in a way the scar is kept on the inner aspect of the leg. The lower part near the knee is often the most visible part of the scar.
After surgery the legs are wrapped lightly with compression wraps. These are switched out to compression garment at 1 week post-operatively. Often there is a need for post operative drain tubes which are in 5 to 7 days.
Strenuous exercise is avoided for the first 3 weeks. Most people feel ready to return to work by 2 to 3 weeks.
- Anesthesia Risks
- Fluid Accumulation (seroma)
- Poor Wound Healing
- Skin Loss
- Numbness or changes in skin sensation
- Skin discoloration
- Unfavorable scarring
- Recurrent looseness of skin
- Fatty tissue
- Deep Vein thrombosis
- Cardiac and pulmonary complications
- Suboptimal Aesthetic result
- Possibility of revision surgery
- Persistent pain