Post-Weight Loss Surgery: Effective Treatment Options & Recovery

Dr. David Stoker

Woman is excited to get a post weight loss procedure. Losing weight is a major life change, and it can be frustrating to put in all that hard work—only for your slimmer shape to be hidden under a lot of loose skin. Surgery after weight loss at my Los Angeles practice helps patients put the “finishing touches” on their new bodies to complement their hard-earned results.

In this blog post, I’ll answer a few of the questions I most commonly receive from prospective patients about post-weight loss surgery recovery, limitations, and possibilities.

What are the different types of post-weight loss surgery?

Patients considering plastic surgery after weight loss are often primarily looking to address loose skin and associated sagging or drooping. The most effective procedures for this include:

  • Abdominoplasty (Tummy Tuck): This removes excess skin in the midsection; it also tightens up weakened or separated abdominal muscles, if needed.
  • Panniculectomy: A modified tummy tuck, this is helpful in addressing excessive loose skin along the lower abdomen only.
  • Facelift: A full incision facelift approach solves concerns about sagging skin on the lower face and neck.
  • Thigh Lift: Dimpled, wrinkled, or hanging skin on the inner and outer thighs is best addressed with this procedure.
  • Body Lift: Body lift surgery after weight loss is my specialty. Variations include the upper body lift, which addresses skin on the torso and back, and the lower body lift, which encompasses the abdomen, thighs, and buttocks.
  • Arm Lift: This procedure removes excess skin along the upper arms and is one of the most popular choices for patients who have experienced weight loss.

What does the recovery after weight-loss surgery look like?

The recovery time for surgeries performed after weight loss varies, but it’s likely you will need at least a week away from work. You can expect to wear bandages, supportive braces, and compression garments that are designed to help your body recover beautifully. I may put surgical drains in place to help prevent fluid from building up below the skin during the first few days. Walking around as soon as possible, even if just for a few minutes, is a great way to reduce the risk of complications such as blood clots.

Regular follow-up appointments will help you stay on the right track to recovery. Your first appointment will be within 5 days of your surgery, which will allow me to check dressings and remove any drains.

What is the best way to minimize scarring?

Even though scarring is a common side effect of major body contouring surgery, I use techniques designed to hide these scars in inconspicuous areas and help them fade over time. Closely following your recovery instructions and protecting your incisions from the sun will help them heal effectively.

What are some common side effects?

Swelling, numbness, and pain are the most common side effects of post-weight loss surgery. The extent of this depends on the area treated and the intensity of the procedure.

Throughout my years of experience as a board-certified plastic surgeon, I have helped patients celebrate their weight-loss results with procedures designed to help them look as great as they feel. With each patient, I create a customized plan to make sure their recovery period is smooth and their results are exceptional.

For more information on which surgery option may be right for you, see my previous blog post on choosing post-weight loss procedures.

If you would like to learn more about surgery after weight loss in Los Angeles, please contact us online or call (310) 300-1779 to request a consultation.

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