Post Weight Loss Surgery

Bariatric surgeries, including gastric bypass, adjustable gastric band, and sleeve gastrectomy, can literally be life-saving for people who are dealing with serious health problems due to obesity. One of the most obvious side effects of these weight loss surgeries is a large amount of sagging skin due to the rapid weight loss. The skin, much like a stretched-out rubber band, simply isn't elastic enough to snap back into place after large amounts of weight area lost. This leaves patients with lots of excess skin that is both aesthetically and physically undesirable. After weight loss surgery and all the hard work involved in losing the weight, nobody wants to be stuck in their old skin anymore. Post weight loss surgery procedures can help patients achieve the body contour they're looking for.

Who is a Candidate for Post Weight Loss Surgery Procedures?

People who have excess skin problems such as:

  • Deflated breasts with downward-pointing nipples
  • Extra folds or hanging skin in the stomach area
  • Extra skin and fat pockets around the hips
  • Deflated buttocks or sagging skin on and around the buttocks
  • Extra skin hanging from the thighs and/or knees
  • Extra skin that hangs from the upper arms

Ideally, patients will be at or close to their target weight when they undergo post weight loss surgery procedures. However, there may be cases where weight of the loose skin is so significant that it's the main reason the patient hasn't yet achieved their target weight. In situations like this, the doctor may approve of doing the surgery now rather than waiting for further weight loss.

The Benefits of Post Weight Loss Surgery Procedures

Post weight loss surgery procedures have a number of benefits, but the most significant of these may be the self-esteem boost. Many people who lose a massive amount of weight following their weight loss surgery still feel unhappy when they look in the mirror due to stubborn fat deposits and large amounts of drooping or hanging skin. Post weight loss surgery procedures can give a person the body contours that they've been working so hard to achieve, and this may just give the patient new levels of pride and confidence. Post weight loss surgery procedures can also be beneficial for practical and physical reasons. Extra skin can make it hard to move normally, and it may make keeping clean harder. Many people with excess skin have a hard time finding clothes that fit, as well. Post weight loss surgery procedures allow patients to confidently show their new shape to the world.

Preparing for Post Weight Loss Surgery Procedures

Dr. Rau will provide patients with a pre-surgery checklist to help them prepare for their procedures. This may include things like discontinuing certain medications prior to the surgery, arranging for transportation to and from the surgery, arranging to have the right types of food and liquids in the home, and other things specific to the procedures and the patient.

The Procedures

There are a number of different procedures that may be included in post weight loss surgery. These include:

  • Arm Lift: In an arm lift, the hanging skin and fat is removed and the area is tightened. The overall shape and contour of the area is kept in mind to produce a good aesthetic result.
  • Tummy Tuck: In a tummy tuck, extra fat from the abdominal area is surgically excised. The abdominal muscles are then tightened and moved upwards if needed. This allows for a smooth tummy area that doesn't have folds or sagging skin.
  • Thigh Lift: In a thigh lift, sagging, puckered, or loose thigh skin is surgically excised. Extra fat and tissue are also removed as needed, with the goal of creating a smooth and shapely upper leg area.
  • Lower Body Lift: A lower body lift combines several procedures to resolve issues with the bottom half of the body. This procedure may often include the tummy, buttocks, and thighs. This creates a sculpted look, with the entire lower body looking like a cohesive whole.
  • Upper Back Lift: An upper back lift is designed to remove extra skin, fat, and tissue from the back. Back rolls are often a problem for post-bariatric surgery patients and this can make patients much more comfortable as well as create a smooth appearance.
  • Breast Lift: A breast lift moves the breasts up to a higher position on the chest cavity. This procedure can correct sagging and remove extra skin.
  • Flankplasty: The flank area, which covers the ribs to the hips, often retains extra skin and fat after major weight loss. This procedure removes the skin and helps create a better hip and abdominal appearance.
  • Butt Lift: A butt lift addresses extra skin in the buttocks area. This procedure corrects drooping and sagging to create a firm butt.
  • Liposuction: Liposuction suctions stubborn fat out of areas like the abdomen, butt, and thighs. It's a good solution for fat that doesn't respond to diet and exercise.
  • Facelift: Facelift surgery may be needed for patients who have drooping jowls or a persistent double chin after their bariatric surgery. This procedure can lift and tighten the whole face. A facelift is often combined with neck lift surgery to give the whole area a smooth and attractive look.


Recovery from post weight loss surgery procedures typically takes 2 to 6 weeks. Most patients are able to return home after a night or two in the hospital. It's important that patients don't rush their recovery and that they follow all discharge instructions closely. Following a healthy diet and exercising within the provided guidelines is vital if patients want to achieve the optimal results.

Results: What to Expect

Post bariatric surgery procedures can be truly life changing. To fully understand how to form realistic expectations, patients need to discuss the procedures in detail with Dr. Rau. Most patients are extremely pleased with their results.

Want to Learn More?

Planning bariatric surgery, or recently had weight loss surgery? It's the ideal time to learn more about the procedures that can get rid of the extra skin and fat at last. Call Rau Plastic Surgery to learn more today.