Table of Contents
About Body Lift Surgery
Belt lipectomy and extended abdominoplasty are two terms describing the same cosmetic procedure. The incision we use in a tummy tuck will normally stop on or near the hip bone area on both sides of the abdomen. In an extended abdominoplasty, or belt lipectomy, the incision doesn’t stop at the hip bones; it continues around the entire body and stops right above the buttocks where it meets the other incision. This incision is placed so that it is usually able to be hidden under bathing suits, briefs and underwear. Often, major weight loss patients have significant sagging of the skin on their buttocks and outer thighs. Because this incision goes all the way around the body, some lifting of the buttocks and outer thighs will occur and will be more proportionate to your new tummy.
An extended abdominoplasty, or belt lipectomy, is a plastic surgery technique commonly referred to as extended tummy tuck surgery. During an extended abdominoplasty, skin and tummy fat are removed from the mid and lower abdomen in addition to simultaneously removing tissue from the lower sides and back to refine the waistline. Next, as with a tummy tuck, upper abdominal skin is pulled downward and the muscular wall is repaired by pulling the abdominal muscles tightly back together. As the upper skin is pulled taut downward, a new opening is created for the navel which has been preserved throughout this procedure.
Oftentimes, it is necessary to place drains in the wall space which will stay in place throughout a portion of the extended tummy tuck recovery period.
Body lift is a cosmetic surgery procedure that is designed to lift the sides of the thighs. Done through the same incision as an extended abdominoplasty and belt lipectomy, it differs, however, in its extensive undermining of the outer thigh skin all the way to the side of the knee. This is a more extensive and expensive operation that fewer patients need now that improvements have been made in the extended abdominoplasty. Deciding whether or not to have a body lift or an extended abdominoplasty will require a more detailed conversation and evaluation with your surgeon during your consultation.
Minor wound complications are, unfortunately, quite common in these procedures. The operations done in most major weight loss patients involve very long skin incisions. In addition, force is applied to these incisions as the skin and underlying tissues are tightened. These two situations mean that the incision may not heal as rapidly in some areas as others. These complications, as well as what to expect during your recovery will be discussed with you, at length, during your consultation with the surgeon. Protein supplements started before, and continued after surgery have been shown to improve wound healing.
Before & After
Meet the Doctor
Dr. Aker, an Indianapolis plastic surgeon affiliated with several area hospitals, has lectured and is published widely on a variety of plastic surgery topics. Dr. Aker brought several new techniques in cosmetic surgery to Indianapolis and Carmel including the endoscopic breast augmentation (“endo aug”) and Asian eyelid surgery.