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Surgery after Weight Loss (Body Contouring)

Body ContouringGoals of Body Contouring

Tummy tuck
Arm lift
Thigh lift
Lower body lift
Breast surgery

Surgery after weight loss (body contouring) removes prominent skin folds and fat that cause people to feel uncomfortable participating in social activities or wearing swimsuits and sportswear.

People interested in this surgery have generally reached a stable weight while eating right and exercising more.  But some areas, such as the abdomen, hips, thighs, legs, arms, and head and neck region--especially after pregnancy--may have skin folds and excess fat. Body contouring may help people improve their appearance and quality of life while also improving their physical and emotional state.

Body contouring includes surgical procedures such as a tummy tuck, arm lift, thigh lift, lower body lift, face lift, breast lift/augmentation, and liposuction. These can be done separately or in various combinations.

In all body contouring procedures, a detailed consultation and a thorough understanding of the procedure and its anticipated outcomes is the key to patient satisfaction.

Tummy Tuck (abdominoplasty)

A tummy tuck is a body contouring plastic surgery procedure intended to improve the shape of your abdominal area. This is usually achieved by removing excess skin and fat from the abdomen and tightening the abdominal skin and also the abdominal wall muscles, depending on your anatomy.

This procedure is usually intended to help those who have lost a lot of weight or who had multiple pregnancies and have protruding "abs" that do not disappear through diet or exercise because of loss of skin laxity and/or muscle overstretching. A tummy tuck can give you a smaller waistline, firmer abdominals, and a flatter abdomen.

Arm Lift (brachioplasty)

An arm lift is a body contouring plastic surgery procedure intended to reshape the bottom portion of the upper arm, from the underarm region to the elbow.

Massive weight loss, aging, and sometimes heredity may give a sagging upper-arm appearance. Loss of skin elasticity and localized fat deposits cannot be corrected by exercising.  All of these arm issues can be addressed by an arm lift, which provides a tighter, firmer appearance to the upper arm.

After having an arm lift you may not have to wear long sleeves to hide your arms anymore, and you may be able to enjoy exercising and even wear swimsuits.


Liposuction is a cosmetic plastic surgical procedure that sculpts and shapes the contours of the body by removing fat deposits from under the skin using a vacuum-suction cannula (a hollow pen-like instrument).

For the best results, the skin covering the area of intended fat removal should be quite elastic in order to compensate for the volume loss and to redrape tightly.

Liposuction is intended to remove localized fat deposits on the abdomen, hips, thighs, calves, arms, buttocks, back, neck, or face. Liposuction can be performed on more than one site during the same procedure. Liposuction is not intended for weight loss or as a replacement for dieting and exercising.

If you think you have localized stubborn fat areas that do not respond to diet and exercise, please contact us for a consultation. If you are an appropriate candidate for liposuction, we can help you feel and look better.

Thigh lift

A thigh lift is a cosmetic plastic surgical procedure that is intended to reshape the thighs by reducing excess skin and, in some cases, fat. This results in smoother skin and better-proportioned contours of the thighs and lower body while decreasing the sagging or drooping in the inner or outer thigh.

If diet and exercise did not achieve your goal of youthful, firmer thighs, you may want to consider a surgical thigh lift. The best candidates for thigh lifts are people with excess skin and soft tissue along the inner thigh region and/or the outer thigh whose weight has been relatively stable.

A thigh lift in combination with liposuction can help patients with inelastic skin have attractive, firmer thighs. Thigh lift surgery is usually done through incisions in the groin that may extend around the back of the thigh for an inner thigh lift. Or some patients are candidates for a minimal-incision medial thigh lift, in which the incision is hidden in the groin. The surgery involves removal of excess skin and tissues, which reshapes and tightens the skin, giving the tights a firmer, younger contour.

An outer thigh lift, which is intended to improve the contour of the outer thigh, involves a groin incision that extends around the hip. This incision may be long, but we use carefully placed incisions that are usually in well-hidden places.

Lower body lift

A lower body lift is a plastic surgical procedure that tightens the thighs and the buttocks by removing excess skin and tissues from the outside hip and inner thigh. If you have loose, sagging lower body skin with a sizeable amount of stubborn fat that is not responding to diet and exercise, leading to sagging buttocks, thighs, and flanks that can distort the contour of your body, you may be a good candidate for lower body lift surgery. 

A lower body lift is done through an incision that follows the bikini/boxer line around the entire body. Usually a generous portion of redundant skin and underlying tissues are removed. Although the scar is long it usually heals well and can be covered by most clothing and swimsuits.

Breast surgery


After weight loss, the breasts may have a deflated or sagging appearance. Using the existing skin and local fat or implants, the breasts are shaped to have a fuller appearance while repositioning the nipple-areolar region to a higher position.


After weight loss, the breasts may also be deflated with excess skin and fat. Breast surgery after weight loss in males repositions the nipple area and removes the excess skin.

Contact Information

Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery
Department of Surgery
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
Lowry Medical Office Building
110 Francis Street, Suite 5A
Boston, MA 02215
Phone: 617-632-7827