If you’ve lost a significant amount of weight, you’ve probably been left with a significant amount of loose, hanging skin. For many of you, the sagging skin can interfere with your ability to wear the clothes you want, and it can look unsightly.
If this sounds like you, then a lower body lift can help. A lower body lift is a procedure that removes loose skin from your abdomen, flanks, hips, and buttocks. For patients who have lost more than 75 pounds, it is the workhorse procedure for helping you get your body back.
One of the most common questions we get is, “how much does it cost?” In this article, we’lll answer the question and discuss the factors that affect cost.
How Much Does a Lower Body Lift Cost?
During a lower body lift, also called a belt lipectomy, excess skin is removed circumferentially from the lower trunk, which flattens the abdomen, contours the waistline, and lifts the lower flanks, hips, and buttocks.
The Major Determinants of Price
The cost of a lower body lift varies from patient to patient, as no two procedures are the same. A reputable surgeon can give you a cost estimate during a personal consultation.
The total cost depends on a number of factors:
1. The Severity of Your Condition
A big determinant of cost is the amount of excess skin you have. Some patients have a mild amount of loose skin, while others have excess skin hanging down to their knees. The more extra skin, the longer the operation will take, and the higher the cost will be. A lower body lift generally takes 5-8 hours to perform. An overnight hospital stay may be required for some patients.
2. Whether Additional Procedures Are Needed
A lower body lift is the workhorse procedure for patients who have lost a significant amount of weight, lifting the lower trunk and hips. Many patients will also benefit from selective liposuction, which can usually be performed at the same time.
Many weight loss patients will also have hanging skin in other areas of the body, such as the chest, thighs, arms, neck, and upper trunk. If these areas are problematic, additional procedures may also be needed.
3. The Skill of the Surgeon
A lower body lift is a specialized procedure that requires special expertise in treating weight loss patients. The best surgeons with a track record of safety and good outcomes often charge more than lesser skilled surgeons.
The costs of surgery in major cities such as San Francisco and New York City, where many of the best surgeons practice, often run higher than in other locales.
The costs of surgery may be significantly cheaper in foreign countries such as Mexico and Colombia. Be wary of "medical tourist" offerings, however, as the standards of safety and quality may be much lower than that found in the US.
Other Cost Considerations
A lower body lift is an extensive procedure that requires detailed aftercare and about a one month recovery period. You should factor in the time off work needed for recovery.
Cost: The Bottom Line
The cost of a lower body lift varies depending on your specific needs and goals.
The general cost of a lower body lift in San Francisco ranges from $12,000 to $40,000.
Is a Lower Body Lift Right For You?
Not everyone is a good candidate for a lower body lift. While the results are transforming, there are some factors to consider.
1. Are You Near Your Goal Weight?
The right time to consider body contouring after weight loss is when you’ve lost most of your excess weight and you’ve reached a stable weight that is within 20 pounds of your goal weight. For most patients who have undergone a bariatric procedure, the time frame is generally at least 12-18 months after the weight loss surgery.
2. Are You Willing to Go Through Surgery?
Dr. Larry Fan makes every effort to be transparent and upfront about the realities of surgery. He is committed to your comfort, before, during, and after your procedure.
A lower body lift is a "real" surgery with a “real” recovery. You should be ready go through a healing period of 1-2 months. The recovery may be tough, but it will be so worth it.
3. Are You Willing to Trade Excess Skin for Scars?
Are you willing to trade your excess skin for lengthy scars?
An easy way to answer this question is to ask yourself:
Would you rather have skin hanging down your sides full of wrinkles and folds without a scar (ie. NO body lift)...
A flat and firm waistline with no more hanging skin but with a trunk line scar (ie. WITH a Body Lift)
For most of us, the answer is pretty obvious (Yes, a body lift, please!).
If you’re not sure, take a look at a real world before and after pictures in our gallery so you can get a sense of the transformation that can take place after a lower body lift.
Our patients now enjoy full, active lives in “regular” clothes, without the need for compression garments and cover-ups to hide the loose skin. The health concerns and inconveniences of rashes and skin irritation can be a distant memory.
If you answered “yes” to all 3 questions above, a lower body lift may be the next step in your transformation.
The Next Step in Your Weight Loss Journey: A Lower Body Lift
Dr. Fan is a skilled plastic surgeon who has helped many patients complete their weight loss journey with body lift procedures. Let him and his team determine which solution is the right match for your needs and goals.