What is a Thigh Lift?
Thigh lift surgery is a procedure that reshapes the thighs, primarily achieved by reducing excess skin, and in some cases excess fat. This will result in smoother skin and better-proportioned contours of the thighs and lower body. A thigh lift is a common procedure for patients that have lost a large amount of weight and have excess skin remaining.
As thigh lift surgery is individualized for each patient in cases where skin elasticity is poor, and stubborn fats are present. A combination of liposuction and thigh lift techniques may be recommended, however, liposuction is often performed as part of another operation to aid in creating the desired result.
What can you expect after the operation?
You will have a waterproof dressing over the wound and a compression garment will be in place. You may have drains in place which will be removed in 24 – 48 hours. The procedure performed under a general anaesthetic is not a particularly painful one, and any pain is usually well controlled with medications meaning it is possible for you to go home soon after the operation, or the following day.
There are usually no sutures to be removed as dissolvable sutures are placed under the skin.You should limit any strenuous activity and sports, heavy lifting, and swimming during the first two weeks. Thereafter, you can steadily increase your activity level within the limits of discomfort.
What are the potential risks?
Risks and Complications
Surgery is not an exact science. Incisions and scars are part of any surgery and the location and extent of the incisions will be discussed with you. Every effort is made by the surgeon to minimise scarring. Scars will fade over time, but they are permanent. They can also become hypertrophic or keloid. Scars vary from person to person and are related to each individual’s skin type, genetics and the ability of their skin to heal.
Every surgical procedure involves certain risks and complications (as per the ASPS brochure) including, but not limited to:
Asymmetry is evident physically in every person. No two sides of the body are ever exactly symmetrical in shape, position or size and the surgeon will make every effort to achieve as close to symmetry as possible but some asymmetry is normal.
Delayed Healing, Infection and Suture Reactions can all be possible healing issues and may require antibiotics or in some cases surgical exploration.
Bleeding, Haematoma or Seroma Collections may resolve themselves but, in some cases may require further surgery.
Loss of Sensation and Numbness may also be experienced. In most cases this will improve over time on its own. In some cases this can be permanent.
Bruising and Swelling may also be a short term effect from surgery and will usually settle in one to two weeks.
Allergies to dressings, medical lotions, sutures or other materials can occur with some patients. You will be advised to cease the use of the dressing, lotion or material that is causing the reaction. In some cases anti-inflammatory medication may be prescribed.
Breathing Difficulties may be due to a general anaesthetic or breathing tube during the operation which has caused some swelling, noisy breathing or discomfort.
Blood Clots can also occur in some surgeries and may require urgent treatment and hospitalisation.
Pain thresholds vary from patient to patient. This may lead to different pain management and/or different recovery times to resume normal activities.
Achieving excellent results with minimal risk is a joint effort. It is important to disclosed to the surgeon and clinic and understand the following:
Full disclosure of your medical history including: allergies, personal, physical and mental history, previous surgeries, current medications and co-morbidities (including but not limited to, smoking, vaping, diabetes, prescription and illegal drug addictions, blood or heart disease, obesity or anorexia).
Co-morbidities may impact on outcome and healing post surgery.
Smoking, vaping, or taking recreational drugs must be ceased in the 6 weeks prior to some operations and during the healing phase. Failure to do so may increase the risk of complications, decrease your healing ability and affect your surgical outcome.
You should not take aspirin based prescription drugs 14 days prior to surgery and during the healing phase of the operation unless advised otherwise by the surgeon.
As per the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA), all non-rebatable (cosmetic) procedures require a validated screening of Body Dysmorphia to be undertaken.
If Dr Layt is concerned about your mental state or physical state prior to the procedure, he may request evaluation by a psychologist, psychiatrist, general practitioner or other specialist. This referral is to assess your suitability, increased risks during surgery or any underlying physical or psychological problems which may affect your recovery or mental health.
In some cases this may require surgery to be postponed or cancelled by the doctor in his primary role to consider your care and personal well-being.
All surgery carries risks and it is important to understand these.
Every patient is an individual and therefore final surgical results will vary from patient to patient. Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified practitioner.
Modern surgery is safe. There is, however, no such thing as “risk free” surgery. The important thing is to understand any potential risks and minimise their occurrence by appropriate planning and management.