Surgery for Smoother Contours in Austin
Extreme weight loss and genetics can produce excess skin and fat deposits in your thighs that no amount of diet and exercise can overcome. Sometimes this stubborn fat in the upper thigh can be removed with liposuction alone. For patients with excess skin, a thigh lift may be necessary. A thigh lift from Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery is designed to excise sagging skin and fat, restoring a youthful, smooth contour to your thigh and hip area.
Who is a Good Candidate for a Thigh Lift?
Anyone who has had gastric bypass surgery or has gained and lost a large amount of weight will probably need this surgery to bring their loose, sagging thigh skin into line with the slimmer contours of the rest of the body. Other candidates may not have the same degree of sagging, but the aging process has led to sagging, cellulite, and loose skin that makes the person self-conscious about wearing clothing or swimwear that exposes their thighs.
If you wonder if a thigh lift would be right for you, try this simple test:
- For the inner thigh lift, stand in front of a mirror and pinch the skin of your inner thigh and lift that skin upwards toward your groin. This will give you an idea of what an inner thigh lift will accomplish.
- For the outer thigh lift, pinch the excess skin at your hip together. Notice the effect this has on the profile of your leg, making it appear more slender and contoured. This is what an outer thigh lift will do.
Austin Plastic & Reconstructive Surgery
- Known for natural-looking aesthetic results in breast reconstruction and cosmetic surgery.
- Elected by peers for inclusion in Texas Monthly's Texas Super Doctors®: Rising Stars listing.
- Reconstructed over 6,000 patients, including more than 2,500 DIEP flap reconstructions.
- 4.9-star average rating over hundreds of reviews for reconstructive and cosmetic surgery.
How Does A Thigh Lift Procedure Work?
During your thigh lift surgery, your surgeon makes an incision in your groin, or along your groin and inner thigh, that can typically be hidden within your bathing suit or short shorts. With certain patients who have lost 100 pounds or more, your surgeon may need to do a vertical incision along the top of the inner thigh in order to ensure an aesthetically pleasing result. All of these options will be discussed with you in detail during your initial consultation.
Excess skin is then removed and areas of stubborn fat smoothen with liposuction, recontouring your thigh to a smooth, youthful, lifted appearance.
Thigh lift surgery is done as an outpatient procedure so you may return home after surgery. You can expect some bruising and swelling and will need to wear a compression garment for at least two weeks. Most patients can return to light activity within a week but should avoid strenuous activities such as running or weight lifting for two to four weeks.
Thigh lift surgery can be performed alone or as part of a body lift.
What is Recovery Like After a Thigh Lift?
Recovery after a thigh lift can be more involved than many procedures; this is simply due to the way our legs are involved in virtually all of our movements. Recovery from these procedures generally requires around three weeks. Due to the tissue removal and re-draping, it’s advised to consider bed rest for up to seven days. This helps avoid putting any pressure on your thigh tissue, and speeds recovery. Climbing stairs, squatting, or any strenuous activity of any sort is out of the question. Walking during these first few days should really only be to the bathroom. You’ll definitely need help around the house.
You’ll have bandages and compression garments on your thighs. The compression garments will initially hold your sutured incisions tightly in place. Then as your recovery progresses, they will help your thighs adapt to their new slimmer contours. You’ll wear your compression garments for four to six weeks.
You can’t sit for two weeks, to keep pressure off your sutures. After one week, you’ll be allowed to walk around the house, but driving is out for at least three weeks. After about six weeks you can resume your normal activities.
Because of your lack of mobility during your recovery, you need to plan for this prior to your procedure. Create a recovery nest with all the entertainment you can find. If you sleep upstairs, you’ll need to create your nest downstairs for at least a week. Enlist help with any chores and children for at least a week or two.
When Will I See My Thigh Lift Results?
As you would assume, you’ll have immediate results, but they will be hidden somewhat due to bruising and swelling. Plus, you’ll be wearing your compression garments. You will need some patience here, as the tissue repositioning can cause some enduring swelling. Some patients may take up to a full year for their thighs to fully recover. But when the swelling has passed and your scars have started to fade, you’ll notice slimmer, younger-looking thighs with great contour.
Download Our Cosmetic Surgery Post-Operative Care Guides
We've compiled detailed post-operative care instructions to best equip our cosmetic surgery patients throughout their recovery process. To ensure the best and safest recovery, your plan encompasses appropriate prescriptions and clear directions towards maintaining your comfort to get you back to normal life and activity as soon as possible. Individual patients respond uniquely, and the type of procedure may differ, but these basic guidelines will help you along your journey.
Are There Risks Associated with Thigh Lift Surgery?
Thigh lift surgery is a safe procedure, but it is involved. As with any surgery, there are risks of infection, poor wound healing, accumulation of fluids, and skin loss. With thigh lifts, other possible side effects can be asymmetry of your legs and numbness or changes in skin sensation in the surgery areas. In some cases, tissue sagging will not be fully alleviated, or patient expectations may merit a secondary procedure to fine-tune the contour of your thighs.
Will There be Visible Scarring After My Thigh Lift?
Our plastic surgeons use their surgical expertise to hide your incisions in locations such as natural creases whenever possible. Still, there will be some visible scarring, particularly with an outer thigh lift. This will fade quite quickly after your recovery is complete. Most patients are happy to have the tradeoff of some scarring in exchange for having their thighs now be slim, contoured, and devoid of loose, sagging skin.
Can I Combine a Thigh Lift with Other Body Contouring Procedures?
Thigh lifts can be combined with other body contouring procedures. For instance, if your surgeon is combining a tummy tuck with an outer thigh lift, that can also be referred to as an extended tummy tuck, as the incision extends out around the flanks. If your surgeon completes the incision circumferentially, a buttocks lift can be a part of the contouring, as well. This combination of procedures can also be called a lower body lift.
Liposuction is already a part of most thigh lifts, at least to some degree, but it can be added on to another location, such as the lower abdomen.
If you’d like to extend the skin tightening and contouring of your thigh lift, you should discuss this with your surgeon during your consultation. They will walk you through the options to determine the best route for you.