A thigh lift (thighplasty) can reduce excess skin and fat in the thigh and knee area. As a result of slim and redefined thigh will look great in skinny jeans, mini-skirts and bathing suits.
Today new trend of thigh lift surgery aims to create thighs that are proportionate to the buttocks, hips and legs. Ideally, the trunk and outer thighs should form an hour-glass silhouette with a smooth outward curve to the outer thighs. From the back, the thigh should stand apart from the buttock with a well-defined fold and there should be a diamond shape area between inner thighs and buttocks. From the front, the thighs should appear smooth and showcase the underlying muscles. The inner thighs should be firm and flat.
Both men and women who have saggy, flabby, dimpled loose tissue and skin on their thighs may be candidates for this procedure. Many people who have lost massive amounts of weight may also benefit from thigh lifts to get rid of the excess fat and loose skin in that area.
Different Types of Thigh Lift
There are several types of thigh lift procedures according to incision patterns.
The most popular type of thigh lift is inner (medial) thigh lift which involves incisions in the groin fold. It is best for people with a moderate amount of skin and fat in this area. With an inner thigh lift, basically the skin and tissue in that inner thighs will be tighten.
A vertical thighplasty involves a vertical incision that starts at the groin crease and extends to the inner knee. The scar is visible when the inner thighs are exposed such as while you are wearing a bathing suit or mini-skirt. During a vertical thigh lift, a wedge of skin and soft tissue will be removed from the inner thigh. Patients with more significant fat and loose skin may need a vertical thighplasty.
An outer thigh lift requires an incision that extends from the groin around the hip. A newer procedure called the spiral thighplasty targets the front, back, inner and outer thigh. The incision is below the buttock fold and continues over the groin crease at the junction of the thigh and pubic area. This plastic surgery procedure is ideal for people who have lost weight.
Combination Thigh Lift Surgery
Sometimes, several types of thigh lift are performed at the same time. Which thigh lift or combination of thigh lifts is right for you depends on a number of factors, like ; the amount of fat and skin need to be removed, quality of the skin and the areas that should be treated. Also, thigh lifts can also be performed in combination with other procedures such as a lower body lift and liposuction.
Thigh Lift Procedure
The main steps of the thigh lift treatment are similar. Your surgeon will choose general or twilight anesthesia (which leaves you sedated, but not unconscious). Next, he or she will make the recommended incision. Whether the skin is excised or lifted varies based on the type of incision and the amount of fat and skin that needs to be removed, re-shaped and/or tightened.
Your surgeon will likely use deep, support stitches that help form and support the new contours of the thigh as part of the surgery. He or she will also close up the incisions with sutures.
The length of the surgery and your hospital stay varies based on which type of thigh lift is chosen and if it is done with liposuction or as part of a lower body lift.
Thigh lift Recovery and Results
Following a thigh lift, there will be bruising, swelling and soreness, but some of the results like thinner, smooth, tight contours will be visible immediately.
Bruising and swelling can be minimized if you take certain supplements before your surgery such as arnica. We have to make a consultation if you take medications or you have other health problems before your surgery to improve the results and minimize the risks.
You will feel some discomfort and tightness for the first 48 to 72 hours after surgery, but you should begin to feel normal after day three. Prescription painkillers can help relieve this pain.
The swelling in your lower body and upper thighs may take three to five weeks to subside.
You will be fitted with a compression garment to protect the incisions and promote shrinking and tightening of the skin after your surgery. Drainage tubes are inserted to reduce swelling and get rid of excess fluid. These tubes can be safely removed when the output of drainage fluid is low like in about 2 to 3 days.
We will likely tell you to keep your legs slightly bent at the hips during the first week after your thigh lift. This will minimize any tension on your incision line, reduce pain and result in a thinner, less-visible scar during the initial healing process.
You should wear gauze pads over the groin incisions so that they remain dry. You can shower approximately three days after the surgery. Your surgeon will likely want to see you for follow-up approximately one week after the procedure.
Try to start walking as soon as possible after a thigh lift, even if you are uncomfortable. Early ambulation will reduce the risk of developing a potentially fatal blood clot in your leg.
The recommendations will be done about how and when to best resume an exercise regimen and your normal activities after the post-operative consultations. The answers may vary based on your physical fitness level and the type of procedures.
Thigh lift risks
Some of the risks associated with thigh lifts include:
Poor wound healing
Numbness or other changes in skin sensation
Skin discoloration and/or swelling
Death of fatty tissue found deep in the skin (fat necrosis)
Major wound separation
Deep vein thrombosis, heart and lung complications
Recurrent skin looseness
Skin irritation from sutures (may require removal)
Possibility of a secondary surgery