The thigh lift is a procedure that improves sagging of the medial thighs. The thigh lift improves the tightness of the inner thighs so that there is less unnatural movement and wrinkling of skin when in a standing position. The thigh lift is performed in patients that wish to improve their inner thighs so that wearing clothing or bathing suits that exposes the thigh is more comfortable. The thigh lift is a common procedure that gastric bypass patients seek, and it is important that a patient’s weight is stable before proceeding.
The thigh lift helps correct changes in the thighs that occur with aging or weight loss. Because the tissues of the body relax with aging, there is sagging all over the entire body. There is also a loss of skin elasticity which also can cause sagging. The thigh lift helps correct this sagging by removing extra skin and fat. The incisions are usually placed at the upper inner thigh so that they are concealed by shorts. In some patients the incision are vertical (in the line from the knee to the groin), but this incision position is much less common. Some patients also have extra fat in the inner thighs which is removed by liposuction. In some circumstances these procedures can be done together. The thigh lift can be performed on the outer thigh as well, but this procedure is much less common due to the conspicuous scar on the outer thigh.
The thigh lift is performed with sedation and local anesthesia or general anesthesia. Control of discomfort is easily achieved with oral pain medicine.
The recovery after thigh lift is slightly longer than with some other Plastic surgery procedures. The reason is that the area of surgery is in constant motion with walking. Daily living activities are possible (and recommended) the day after surgery. It is important to engage in “early ambulation” (early walking) immediately after any surgery, and especially any surgery of the lower extremity.
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