Weight Loss Surgery

An ever increasing number of patients are now losing significant amounts of weight. Some do this via surgery (gastric banding, bypass) whilst some do it through exercise and diet. The end result, however, often detracts from the success of their weight loss. Patients often feel that there are significant folds of skin left behind and that their appearance belies the effort involved.

Plastic Surgery following major weight loss is termed Post-Bariatric Surgery and encompasses a number of procedures aimed at correcting excess skin following success in losing weight. Operations in this field are varied but all carry significant risks as well as very obvious benefits.

The Extended Abdominoplasty (or Belt Lipectomy) procedure removes skin folds from around the waist, leaving a scar that travels all the way around the abdomen. Although it appears to be simply a bigger form of an abdominoplasty, it is in fact a much more involved operation and takes significantly longer. Patients can expect to be in theatre for 4-6 hours, will most likely need blood transfusion, and can be in hospital for several days. They will then need significant aftercare and problems with wound healing are common, meaning that patients may need an extended period of dressings.

Arm reduction surgery (Brachioplasty) to remove skin fold in the upper arms (bingo wings or batwings) aims to tighten the skin in the upper arm, leaving a scar along the inside of the arm. It is usually a very successful operation and in Mr Price’s practice has a high rate of patient satisfaction. On its own it can be performed as a day case procedure.

Breast uplift surgery (mastopexy) or excision of redundant male breast skin is a more involved operation, requiring an overnight stay in hospital but usually no blood transfusions. The nipple is repositioned higher on the chest and the breast reshaped appropriately. This also has a very high degree of patient satisfaction.

Back lifts aim to correct the skin fold in the upper back, often around the bra line in ladies. The scar from these aims to be hidden behind a bra – in men it simply travels across the back. The surgery involves an overnight stay in hospital.

Thigh reduction surgery involves the removal of excess skin from the inside of the thighs. Where there is only a small amount of skin, the scar can be hidden high up in the thigh. However, with greater amounts of excess skin the scar travels further down the leg, but does not cross the knee.

Patients undergoing surgery can achieve exceptional gains from the procedures listed above, but should be aware that it is in the nature of their skin to stretch with time. As such, revisional surgery is sometimes required, as the skin stretches after surgery.

To make an appointment to discuss Weight Loss Surgery in Cambridge, please contact Mr Price’s secretary.