All women want slim, firm, contoured thighs, but if you’ve gained and then lost a significant amount of weight, there’s a good chance you now have thighs covered with loose saggy skin. The skin was stretched when the thighs were larger, and it is almost impossible for it to tighten back down, no matter if you make changes in your diet and work on targeted exercises.
A thigh lift with Dr. Nealy at Silk Touch can give you the slimmer, contoured thighs of your younger days. A thigh lift removes the excess skin and fat and leaves toned, refined inner and outer thighs.
What is a thigh lift?
A thigh lift is a surgical procedure whose goal is to take loose, saggy thighs and transform them into a slimmer, contoured form. The procedure removes excess skin and fat from the inner and outer thighs. On the inner thigh, Dr. Nealy may include liposuction to remove fat pockets.
Would I be a good candidate for a thigh lift?
If you’ve undergone bariatric surgery or gained and lost a large amount of weight, a thigh lift is almost a required procedure to address the sagging, loose skin that covers both thighs. 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.
There is a simple test to see if a thigh lift would benefit you:
- 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.
How is a tight lift procedure performed?
Dr. Nealy has various options for the location and type of incisions for these procedures. During your consultation, the two of you will discuss what he feels will work best for your situation. There are two overall methods, but Dr. Nealy will customize your surgery to your unique needs.
Inner thigh lift
This method is also called a medial thigh lift. Here, Dr. Nealy makes the incision at the junction where the thigh meets the pubic area. This makes for a discreet incision, yet it gives him access to the necessary underlying tissues. Once the incision is made, a wedge of skin is removed, along with some (but not all) of the fat. The remaining lower edge of the incision is then pulled upward and the incision is closed.
Outer thigh lift
Also known as a bilateral thigh lift, this method has the goal of tightening the skin on the front and outside portions of the thighs. Dr. Nealy makes a V-shaped incision at the top of the leg near the hipbone, where it can be effectively hidden beneath the panty line. The incision can vary; it may wrap around the hip or buttocks area, depending on where the patient has loose skin. Excess skin is trimmed, and the remaining skin is pulled up and attached to the other side of the incision. Outer lifts can remove more tissue than an inner lift, plus they have the added benefit of lifting the buttocks along with the thighs.
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What will my recovery be after having a thigh lift?
Recovery from a thigh lift generally requires around three weeks. You’ll need some patience. 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 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 one full month. Dr. Nealy will stress the importance of this aspect of your recovery.
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.
Thigh lift recovery is not the time to push things. If you follow Dr. Nealy’s recovery instructions and let your incisions and thigh tissue heal without stress, this will pay benefits in the long run.
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.
When will I see my thigh lift results?
Initially, your legs will be more contoured, but they will also be swollen and bruised and in compression garments. You will need some patience here, as the tissue repositioning can cause some lingering 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!