Losing weight can benefit your long-term health and is most definitely life-changing, especially if you’ve worked hard for it. Weight loss due to careful dieting and regulation of intake can however leave loose skin or stubborn deposits of fatty tissue which simply do not go away, no matter how hard you try.
This is more true for patients who have undergone weight reduction stomach surgery (gastric bands, gastric bypasses or gastric balloons). This is known as bariatric surgery. Losing tens of stones usually results in the skin “deflating” – i.e. due to a loss of the skin’s natural elasticity from having been overweight, this often means rolls of hanging skin. Patients often then realise that they have been left with different, but equally distressing body shape issues to the ones they had as an overweight person. Sagging skin folds lead to problems coping with everyday life but also pose a significant cosmetic issue. This can especially be apparent in areas like the tummy, legs and arms for men and those areas plus the breasts for women.
It can be very disappointing to reach your weight goal and still not feel happy with your appearance. It’s especially frustrating when you’ve lost the fat but you now have some excess skin. If the skin has failed to retract back to its normal state after weight loss, chances are that exercise alone won’t firm or tone it. You might think there’s nothing you can do to rejuvenate your body back to a more contoured shape, but there are various treatments that you might consider if you don’t feel confident with the results of your weight loss. We offer surgical and non-surgical procedures which can address problems like these, each procedure being tailored to your needs.
If you have a lot of excess skin hanging down then surgery is likely to be the only useful option. Surgery is not designed as a procedure to lose more weight. It is only useful once you have reached your goal weight. Only after a full consultation with Mr. Coady would he be able to determine what may be best for you.
The most popular form of aesthetic surgery for this type of issue is ‘Abdominoplasty’ also known as the tummy tuck. The tummy tuck aims to remove the excess fold/s of skin from the the abdomen. There are several different types of abdominoplasty. The correct procedure for you is chosen on the basis of what areas of the abdomen need to be addressed, the degree of tissue laxity or fatty tisue you have. It is often combined with other fat reduction treatments such as liposuction to get an even and natural result.
The muscles underneath the fat can also be repaired, if required. After pregnancy these muscles are often stretched apart, so it is recommended to only have this procedure, and indeed an abdominoplasty at all, after you’ve finished having children or losing weight. Otherwise, the end result of this procedure may become un-done. The tummy-tuck is very popular with women after pregnancy who are looking to lose any stubborn fat and skin overhanging at the front.
If you are looking to target fat elsewhere, such as thighs, arms, buttocks, and your skin has a high degreee of natural elasticity, then liposuction is an option. During liposuction, a large quantity of fluid is injected under the skin and then small incisions are made. Throught these a cannula is inserted to vacuum, or suck out part of the fat layer which lies underneath the skin. The fluid helps reduce bleeding and allows a much smoother result to be obtained. In expert hands, this procedure can leave you with a smoother body shape, and should continue to look great for years to come providing you maintain a healthy diet and exercise after treatment. While not as invasive as a tummy tuck, liposuction is still a surgical procedure, and it requires recovery time. There is usually a fair amount of bruising to the areas treated, but this subsides in the weeks after surgery.
If you only have a small pouch of fat that needs to be reduced, a non-surgical procedure may be an option for you. Mr. Coady offers a skin tightening and body contouring procedure called Exilis Elite that offers outstanding results without the downtime associated with traditional cosmetic surgery.
Exilis Elite can target any area of stubborn fat by using radiofrequency energy and ultrasound to kill fat cells. The radio waves penetrate the skin and heat the fatty tissues enough to gradually destroy fat cells. The bonus is that it can tighten the collagen in the skin during the same treatment. The procedure usually requires four sessions and the results are fairly long-lasting.
Patients should note that none of these procedures will help you to lose weight, although they can remove the unnecessary fat to regain a smoother and more contoured figure. Patients should aim to obtain a stable target weight before any procedure. Afterwards they should still follow a healthy diet and exercise regularly. Don’t let all that hard work go to waste.