Do you suffer from “skirt-envy”? Would you like firmer, younger looking thighs? Then a thigh lift may for you. After considerable weight loss, skin can be left with a “saggy” appearance, which is not the look you had in mind when you decided to lose weight. A surgical thigh lift removes skin that has lost its elasticity, improving the overall appearance of the thigh area, although often focusing specifically on the inner thigh. The procedure may be combined with other related procedures, such as a tummy tuck or liposuction.
Immediately before surgery your doctor will mark your thighs while you are in a standing position. He or she will grasp the skin and gently pull it upwards in order to estimate how much skin should be removed. An incision is made in the groin that goes to the back of the crease of the buttock. Skin in then lifted and excess skin and fat are removed to improve the shape of the leg and tighten the skin. The final scar is hidden in the groin crease.
Four to five hours
Your surgeon will direct you on preparation for surgery. You will be given instructions on eating and drinking, smoking, and taking or avoiding vitamins, iron tablets and certain medications. If you develop a cold or an infection of any kind, especially a skin infection, your surgery may have to be postponed. Patients that suffer from hypertension must inform the surgeon prior to surgery. To eliminate the chance of post op. bleeding you should avoid aspirin and any medication containing aspirin or brufen for two weeks prior to surgery. Communication with your surgeon is very important. You must clearly discuss your desired look with the surgeon so that he or she can determine with you what can realistically be achieved.
After surgery your leg(s) will be covered with bandages designed to hold them in shape whilst the newly sculptured skin heals to the tissue beneath. You will have sutures, possibly with a drain inserted to help the skin and tissue heal. Some of the sutures will absorb, and some may have to be removed by your during a follow-up visit.
Following the procedure you may feel some discomfort as there may be some swelling, bruising and stiffness. You should rest well and avoid a lot of leg motion, which can affect scarring.
Most people return to work after about a week.
Risks are inherent to any surgical procedure. The most common risks are swelling, bruising, bleeding, infection, fluid, numbness, or scarring.
The most common risk particular to this surgery is pulmonary embolism due to the freeing of fat or blood clots into the bloodstream, however this is very rare.
The incision does leave a scar at the hip, but it fades in time and can be hidden by a bathing suit
You will see a noticeable difference in the balance and contour of your leg(s) quite soon after surgery. However, improvement will become evident gradually as the swelling has subsided. You will also feel more confident and less self-conscious.