Removing Excess Skin After Weight Loss

Published: August 3, 2020
Category: Dr. Michael Philbin, In The News, Tummy Tuck

Losing weight can transform your health and overall life. The rewards of reducing your Body Mass Index (BMI) extend well beyond a decrease in blood pressure and risk of cardiovascular disease; they can also include a major boost to your self-confidence! But, some unwanted side effects frequently mirror the results of significant weight loss. Sagging, deflated excess skin on the body and face is a common concern of many people who lose a large percentage of their body weight. Plastic surgery provides effective solutions to eliminate this excess skin and allow patients to fully realize the rewards of their weight loss victory!

“Although vilified when it comes to our bodies, fat plays an important role in providing support and structure to our skin,” explains Michael Philbin, a Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon with Edina Plastic Surgery. “When we gain and carry extra fat, our skin gradually stretches to accommodate the added volume. As a result, when we lose that fat, the overlying skin that has stretched out over time may appear loose, saggy, and deflated. This can be very distressing to patients, especially after they have worked so hard for their weight loss. Fortunately, surgery is very effective for removing this skin – wherever the patient may be experiencing it.”

Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty)

Tummy tuck is one of the most common surgeries we perform at Edina Plastic Surgery,” shares Dr. Philbin. “This surgery’s appeal is vast, versatile, and varied, ranging from mothers who want to address sagging abdominal skin after pregnancy, to men looking to restore a more youthful-looking waistline after weight loss. Abdominoplasty is customized to each patient’s needs and involves the removal of excess skin (and sometimes additional fat with liposuction) from the abdominal area to create a smoother and firmer abdominal profile.”

Arm Lift (Brachiaplasty)

Loose, crepey, sagging skin behind the upper arms is a common complaint of those who have lost significant weight. Arm lift surgery addresses this area by creating an incision between the underarm and elbow area and removing excess skin. The result is an upper arm with smoother skin and a more contoured and toned appearance.

Breast Lift (Mastopexy)

“The female breast is largely comprised of fat,” explains Dr. Philbin. “A women’s weight loss journey may be accompanied by a decrease in the size of her breasts and an undesirable deflation and sagging of breast tissue. Breast lift surgery can raise and reshape the breasts after weight loss. Breast implants may also be used to replace lost volume and to enhance overall firmness and shape.”

Mommy Makeover

When it comes to removing excess skin after weight loss, Mommy Makeovers aren’t just for mommies! The term, “Mommy Makeover,” simply refers to multiple procedures being performed during one operation to enhance a patient’s overall results and potentially reduce downtime. The most popular surgery combination is a tummy tuck performed with breast lift surgery. If recommended by your surgeon, this treatment approach can lead to greater correction of excess skin and more harmonious results if a patient is concerned about multiple areas of their body.

Body Lift

“If a patient is concerned about sagging skin that extends around their entire body, they may be a good candidate for body lift surgery,” says Dr. Philbin. “Body lifts are generally performed on patients who have lost a massive amount of weight either on their own or with the aid of gastric bypass surgery. The goal with this procedure is to lift and tighten the skin of the abdominals, thigh area, and buttocks – the circumference of the body. The scars that result from body lift surgery are customized to match the patient’s natural contours, and the surgery itself is tailored to match the specific needs and goals of each patient.”


Many of us don’t anticipate the changes that significant weight loss can lead to in our faces. Unfortunately, we can’t select where on our bodies we’d like to lose fat when we embark on a weight loss journey. Fat loss in the face can lead to loss of support and result in drooping skin around the jawline and a “turkey neck.” So, even though we maybe feel more energetic and youthful than ever after our weight loss, our face appears older and more tired-looking than it did before. Facelift surgery can effectively address these changes by removing excess skin and tightening our jawline and neckline to a more youthful positioning. The use of facial fat grafting may also be recommended to restore some of the desirable volume that fat once provided.

“Patients who have successfully lost a large amount of weight should first and foremost celebrate,” says Dr. Philbin. “Weight loss requires significant lifestyle changes that are NOT easy. I see the surgeries that we perform to remove excess skin at Edina Plastic Surgery as an extension of the complete body transformation a patient has fought for and earned with their weight loss. Each of us deserves to love the body we’re in, and I feel honored to help our patients reach that level of confidence after all of the hard work they put in!”

Have you recently lost a large amount of weight and are now battling with excess skin? Schedule a complimentary consultation with one of our surgeons to discuss any of the procedures mentioned above! Call (612) 509-0717 or simply CLICK HERE to get started!

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