Thigh lift is one of the many body contouring procedures offered at Restore SD Plastic Surgery to improve your look and instill self-confidence. If you have lost a great deal of weight or the natural aging process has left you with loose skin on your thighs then a thigh lift might be right for you. The procedure is designed to remove excess skin from the thighs and restore a smoother and more refined contour of the legs above the knee.
A thigh lift is a body contouring procedure and is not designed as a weight loss operation. If you would like to lose a few pounds or tone up a bit before undergoing surgery please let us know – at Restore SD Plastic Surgery we can provide referrals for nutrition guidance, medical weight loss, and personal trainers.
The Best Candidates
- Do not have venous insufficiency of the legs or history of blood clots in the leg
- Are motivated to improve your thigh appearance through surgical intervention
- Are healthy and have maintained a stable weight for 4-6 months (within 10 pounds)
- Are satisfied with your weight prior to undergoing body contouring surgery
- Are not taking blood thinner medications or using nicotine products
- Are motivated to maintain a healthy lifestyle with diet and exercise
- Want the self confidence to wear body conscious clothes
- Have loose skin of the thighs
Thigh lift techniques have been refined over the last decade and your Restore SD surgeon will work with you to plan the best operative approach. If you have a bit of extra fat in addition to extra skin, liposuction of the upper thigh may be a useful addition. Sometimes liposuction is done as a separate procedure prior to removing the extra skin in order to optimize the final result.
Every individual has a unique body type that may affect final placement of the incisions and your Restore SD surgeon will discuss your goals to arrive at the surgical plan that optimizes your results.
Your thigh lift surgery is performed under general anesthesia in an accredited surgery center or hospital setting. The procedure usually takes 90 minutes to 2 hours. During the surgery, your Restore SD surgeon will remove the excess skin from the upper and inner thigh and sculpt the area into slimmer and more shapely appearance. When surgery is complete, you will have compression dressings placed and will have a drain in each surgical site. Thigh lift is an outpatient procedure and you will be able to go home after recovering from anesthesia.
Thigh lift is an outpatient surgery, so once you have recovered from anesthesia you are able to go home with a responsible adult. Ideally this loved-one or friend can stay with you for a day or two and drive you during the early recovery process. Some surgical pain is expected and will be treated with pain medications. Most patients can return to work after 2-3 weeks. Normal daily activities like showering, eating and light activity can be resumed within 48-72 hours after surgery. Some post-operative swelling is normal and generally resolves within the first 4 weeks after surgery. You should refrain from intense physical activity for 4-6 weeks. During the recovery period, you will have follow-up with your Restore SD surgeon and will be guided back to your usual activities. Most complications occur from getting too active too early, so select a surgical date that allows an appropriate amount of time to heal and gradually return to your more vigorous activities.
The Combined Procedures
Thigh Lift surgery is a very powerful body contouring procedure that restores harmony to your proportions that can be lost with weight loss or aging. The procedure can be combined with breast surgery, liposuction using the SAFELipo™ technique, or facial rejuvenation procedures. Your Restore SD surgeon will partner with you to develop a surgical plan that optimizes your result and your safety.
- What happens at my thigh lift consultation?
When you arrive at Restore SD Plastic Surgery to discuss thigh lift surgery, your Restore SD surgeon will perform a detailed examination as well as review your medical history and any medications you are taking. At your consultation, you will have photos taken with our Vectra 3D imaging system and discuss treatment areas and options while viewing your photos series. With our state of the art Canfield software, potential surgical results can be viewed and adjustments can be made, helping you to visualize possible outcomes.
- Tell me about the incisions and scars for thigh lift surgery.
The incisions for Thigh Lift are placed on the inside and upper part of the thigh but can still be visible while wearing shorts, a bathing suit, or an above the knee skirt. Depending on your individual distribution of excess skin the incision may stop short of the knee or may extend just beyond. Your Restore SD surgeon will thoroughly examine you and discuss all of your surgical options with you.
- Why is thigh lift surgery for me?
Weight loss through diet and exercise or through bariatric surgery halts or reverses some serious medical conditions such as type II diabetes, high blood pressure, and joint problems. Loose skin of the thighs can be an unanticipated side effect of weight loss and can be effectively treated with thigh lift surgery. Some skin shrinkage can be expected in the months following weight loss, so surgery is generally not undertaken until you have been at a stable weight for several months.
- Why should I choose Restore SD for my thigh lift surgery?
The surgeons at Restore SD Plastic Surgery have over a decade of experience with cosmetic and reconstructive surgery. In addition to being fully credentialed, we take the time to listen to your goals and partner with you to develop the best and safest surgical plan that will optimize your results and leave you looking and feeling your best.
- How do I choose a surgeon for thigh lift?
It is important to ask if your surgeon is Board Certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery. As Board Certified plastic surgeons at Restore SD, we have years of training and expertise in body contouring surgery that cannot be imitated by short courses and alternative certifications. Ensure that your surgeon is proficient in body contouring surgery and thigh lift surgery in particular. The American Board of Plastic Surgery is one of 23 members of the American Board of Medical Specialties. These specialties represent the traditional core of fully trained specialists. Alternative boards have cropped up over the last several years to try to lend legitimacy to incompletely trained or poorly trained practitioners. Accept nothing less than a surgeon certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery who preferably is a member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) and American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS).
- I am a massive weight loss patient after bariatric surgery – what do I need to know?
Thigh Lift surgery is one of several body contouring procedures that are very effective in restoring your figure and look to a slimmer and youthful one. The various body contouring surgeries after massive weight loss can be staged in a number of ways. Your Restore SD surgeon will listen to your ideas and goals and partner with you to arrive at a surgical plan that optimizes results and safety.
- How much time off work should I take after thigh lift surgery?
Depending on your profession, you should expect to take 2-3 weeks off from work. You will not be able to drive while taking narcotic pain medication and will be wearing compression garments. You will need a ride home after having general anesthesia and have a friend or family member stay with you for the first night and a day or two if possible.
- What should I do to prepare for thigh lift surgery?
If you have close friends or relatives who have had arm lift surgery – start there! A personal story of their journey may guide you to questions to ask your surgeon and having someone with a shared experience is invaluable. Educate yourself by reading our procedure page and viewing our educational videos. Other sources of information include RealSelf and WebMd.
- I am a smoker – can I have thigh lift surgery?
At Restore SD Plastic surgery, we want to deliver safe, consistent, and reproducible results. Smoking tobacco or using any nicotine products has adverse effects on wound healing. Your risk of tissue loss, infection, and prolonged incision healing are much higher if you use nicotine. We recommend a nicotine free period of 8 weeks prior to and a minimum of 4 weeks after surgery. We have an easy urinary nicotine test that we complete in the office to help you on your journey to a safe and gratifying surgical experience with us.
- I have Diabetes – what do I need to know about thigh lift surgery?
If you have diabetes it is important to work with your medical team to keep an ideal HbA1C. Diabetes can increase your risk for prolonged wound healing and certain types of infections. Surgery can be safely performed but requires a coordinated effort from patients, surgeons, and medical doctors to attain outstanding results. There are some instances where your Restore SD surgeon may want to postpone surgery until your diabetes is under better control.
- How soon can I travel after having thigh lift surgery?
Having surgery means a commitment to an appropriate recovery. We recommend scheduling your surgery at a time that allows enough time to recover and gradually return to your normal activities. Flying, driving long distances, or leaving the immediate area are not recommended until you have been cleared by your surgeon. If you have specific travel needs or require advice for emergency travel soon after a procedure, please let us know and we will be glad to discuss the details with you.