Losing a lot of weight can do wonders for your health and how you feel, but it’s only the start of improving your appearance. This is because once the fat that was stretching out and supporting your skin is gone, the skin can become loose, wrinkled, and sagging.

This is why cosmetic surgeons offer body contouring. A body contouring cosmetic procedure is a form of surgery that removes excess skin and tightens the remainder, restoring your body to a leaner, firmer shape.

Body Contouring Procedures

Body contouring is not one single operation, but a class of operations. Depending on the location of your weight loss and the extent of your sagging, it may involve lifting or tightening your abdomen, buttocks, thighs, breasts, and/or arms.

How Body Contouring Is Performed

Body contouring is not a minor surgery. It will require large incisions and is almost always done under general anesthesia. Your plastic surgeon will decide what pattern the incisions will follow. If possible, the incisions will be placed in areas where they will be hidden by clothing, but this is not always an option.

In many cases, body contouring requires more than one operation. Your doctor will work with you to develop a surgical plan that meets your needs, keeping your safety and health foremost in mind. It may take a year or more before body contouring is complete.

Recovery and Results

Most body contouring procedures are major surgeries that will require some time to heal from. Your surgeon will instruct you on how to care for your wounds to make your recovery as quick as possible. You will need to avoid physical activity while you are healing to avoid putting too much stress on the incisions.

An overnight hospital stay may be required. If not, you will still need to have someone drive you home after the procedure, and it is a good idea to have someone stay with you at least one day after the surgery to ensure you are able to take care of yourself.

Body contouring almost always leaves visible scars. You should keep this in mind when deciding whether this procedure is for you.

Once you have healed, the results of the body contouring should be immediately visible as an improvement in your shape. As long as you maintain your weight and fitness, the results will be permanent although some sagging may occur with age.