At Cornerstone Plastic Surgery & Aesthetic Medicine, Thigh Lifting is done to remove excess skin from the thigh and buttock area. This sagging skin is ordinarily caused by weight loss. The natural aging process also causes skin to lose elasticity, but both men and women will often find that the thighs, in particular, lose their firmness as the layers of muscle and fat become thinner. In such cases, a thigh lift can help to restore and tighten these areas, giving a much firmer, youthful look and leaving you more confident to wear fitted trousers and shorts. A thigh lift on the inner thighs is known as a medial thigh lift and can be done as a stand-alone procedure – or in combination with another body contouring procedure such as a tummy tuck. A thigh lift on the outer thighs is a lateral thigh lift. Dr. Coville typically does this sort of thigh lift in conjunction with an abdominoplasty or as part of a total body lift. What can and should be done in your case will depend on your consultation with Dr. Fred Coville. However, the following introductory paragraphs will, we hope, be helpful.
Is a thigh lift right for me?
A thigh lift can enhance your appearance and your self-confidence, but it won’t necessarily change your looks to match your dream body shape, or cause other people to treat you differently. However, a thigh lift is a significant and very effective procedure. Before you decide to have surgery, think carefully about your expectations, and discuss them openly and frankly with Dr. Fred Coville. The best candidates for thigh lift are men or women who are looking for improvement, not perfection, in the way they look. If you’re physically healthy and realistic in your expectations, you may be a good candidate.
Are there any risks?
In most cases, a thigh lift is a very straightforward procedure. Nevertheless, as with any operation, there are some risks. Anyone considering surgery, however, should be aware of these potential complications before deciding to go ahead with it. Dr. Coville will discuss these with you in detail during your consultation and will give you as much time as you need to feel comfortable in your understanding of the procedure.
In your initial consultation, Dr. Fred will evaluate your health and explain which surgical techniques may be the most appropriate for you, based on the condition of your thighs and skin tone. Be sure to discuss your expectations frankly with him and our staff. He will be equally frank with you, describing your alternatives and the risks and limitations of each of your options. You must be sure to tell us if you smoke and if you are taking any medications, vitamins, or other drugs. Dr. Coville will also explain the type of anesthesia to be used, where the surgery will be performed, and the costs involved.
How do I prepare for a thigh lift?
Our staff at Cornerstone Plastic Surgery & Aesthetic Medicine will give you detailed instructions to prepare you for your surgery, including guidelines on eating and drinking, smoking, and taking or avoiding certain medications. While making preparations, be sure to arrange for someone to drive you home afterwards. Someone should also be available to help you out for a day or two if needed. If you would like, we can arrange a health aide to stay with you to assist you during this period. If you are visiting us from out of town or abroad for your surgery, we will facilitate all the arrangements to make your recovery as comfortable as possible. Be sure to ask about our Seaside Recovery options.
Where will my surgery occur?
Thigh Lifts can be done under local anesthetic and sedation, or general anesthetic. Dr. Coville will review your options with you during your consultation. The surgery is typically performed on an outpatient basis at one of the fully accredited surgery centers on the beautiful Southern Shore of New Jersey with which Dr. Coville is affiliated.
In medial thigh lift surgery, the incision is along the upper inner thigh area. In some cases, where additional lift is needed, the incision may carry on along – either the groin line or the buttock fold and, in extreme cases, down the inside of the thigh. Excess skin and fat will be removed through these incisions and the remaining skin is closed with sutures. Sometimes the operation is performed in conjunction with liposuction. Regardless of the location of the surgical incision, every effort is made to make sure that the resulting scars will be as inconspicuous as possible. Drainage tubes following the operation are rarely, if ever, needed and the surgery usually takes about one-and-a-half hours to complete.
We will use dissolving stitches to close the incisions, which will also be taped for greater support.
You’re likely to feel tired and sore for a few days following your surgery, but you’ll be up and around in 24 to 48 hours. Most of your discomfort can be controlled by medication that Dr. Fred will prescribe for you before surgery so that you have them with you when you need them. Within one week, we will remove the supporting tapes, and you will be asked to wear a compression garment. This is to reduce swelling and assist in shrinking and tightening of the skin. You should wear it as directed.
You should be able to return to work within a week, depending on the level of activity required for your job. Follow our advice on when to begin exercises and normal activities after surgery. Your scars will be firm and pink or red for at least six weeks. Then they may remain the same size for several months, before they tighten up. After several months, your scars will begin to fade, although they will never disappear completely. Dr. Coville will want to see you during this period to see if there is any need for him to treat your scars so that they heal as inconspicuously as possible.
Will I Be Happy?
For most patients, the results of a thigh lift are extremely satisfying. Your decision to have a thigh lift is a highly personal one that not everyone will understand. What is important is how you yourself feel about it. If you’ve met your personal goals, then your surgery is a success.