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Patients who have lost significant weight either through bariatric surgery or through diet and exercise are often left with excess skin hanging around their abdomens, waists and buttocks. This skin can rub against the skin underneath and cause skin breakdown, rashes and irritation. Although exercise can help to shape and tone fat and muscle, no amount of diet and exercise can remove excess skin. If you have a significant amount of extra skin around the waist, the only way to truly remove it is through surgery, in this case, a belt lipectomy. For smaller amounts of skin, or for people who do not want to have surgery, our patients have had very good results with the TriPollar Apollo in our office.
Belt lipectomy enables patients’ reflections in the mirror to match how they feel after weight loss. Patients will often combine belt lipectomy with a mastopexy (breast lift), liposuction or TriPollar Apollo treatments for overall body contouring.
Belt Lipectomy Candidates
Good candidates for belt lipectomy have had a stable weight for several months and are in good general health. Belt lipectomy patients are looking to remove loose, excess skin around the waist, abdomen and buttocks area that has failed to resolve with diet and exercise.
When performing a belt lipectomy, Dr. Lichten basically tracks around the waistline and surgically removes the excess skin. Although it can be done as an outpatient procedure, patients will typically stay overnight hospital for monitoring and to manage pain control. You will likely have drains in place for a couple of weeks after surgery to help healing.
Generally, you can expect about 2-3 days of pain, and 2-3 weeks tapering off the pain medication and beginning to resume regular activities. In 4-6 weeks, most patients can resume lifting and regular activity.