Achieve Lasting Wellness with Plastic Surgery After Weight Loss
Congratulations on your remarkable health journey! Dr. Joseph Capella specializes in after weight loss surgery and body contouring.
Having performed over 10,000 body contouring procedures at Capella Plastic Surgery in New Jersey, he’s a renowned leader in body contouring. Dr. Capella’s research, presentations, and publications demonstrate his dedication to surgical innovation and safety. He has also collaborated with his father, Dr. Rafael Capella, an esteemed bariatric surgeon, in his work. Discover how a lower body lift with Dr. Capella can tailor your physique and show off your weight-loss progress.
Enhance Your Quality of Life
Weight loss following obesity surgery or as a result of lifestyle changes can lead to significant changes in your appearance. With few exceptions, individuals following significant weight loss develop generalized or focal areas of excess skin. The primary cause of excess skin following weight loss is relatively simple. Similar to pregnancy, where the muscles, skin, and other tissues of the abdominal wall expand to accommodate the fetus, a similar process occurs with the accumulation of fat in the body. There are important differences, however. The process of fat accumulation in morbidly obese individuals often begins during childhood or adolescence, prolonging the period of tension on the skin. Dr. Capella is regarded among the most experienced New Jersey After Weight Loss Surgery providers
In addition, the area of tissue expansion in obesity is generalized rather than limited for the most part to the abdomen. With weight loss and following the delivery of a baby, the affected tissues tend to retract. When the tissues do not return to their previous state, it is because they have been permanently damaged. In the case of skin, the elastic fibers have been broken. This can give the appearance of striae, a condition often seen on the breasts and abdomen following pregnancy. How closely the skin and other tissues of the body resemble their appearance prior to pregnancy or obesity depends on similar factors. At Capella Plastic Surgery, we strive to offer the best procedure for After Weight Loss Surgery New Jersey has to offer.
Unlock the Benefits of Plastic Surgery after Weight Loss
Probably the most important determinant of how much loose skin an individual will have following weight loss is age. Younger patients tend to have less loose skin.
The next most important factor is the amount of weight loss. An individual who loses 250 lbs. is likely to have more excess skin than somebody losing 80 lbs. Other less important variables include complexion, amount of sun exposure received over a lifetime, heredity, and whether somebody is a smoker. Fair-skinned people, in general, tend to develop more loose skin than darker individuals. Sun worshippers tend to sustain more tissue damage over the years and consequently more loose skin following weight loss. Some people tend to have ”better” skin than others of similar complexion and lifestyle. This may be the result of hereditary factors that are not readily apparent. Finally, smoking breaks down collagen, a major component of skin and other structural components of the body. Smokers develop more loose skin than their non-smoking counterparts.
About Plastic Surgery after Weight Loss
Body contouring procedures should be considered only after one's weight has stabilized after a bariatric procedure.
This can range from 12 to 24 months, depending on an individual’s preoperative weight. Performing a skin tightening procedure prior to weight stabilization may result in the need for further skin tightening in the future. Patients often want all body contour concerns addressed as soon as possible. Unfortunately, providing the highest quality plastic surgery often means having certain procedures or combinations of procedures performed in a certain order.
After Weight Loss Surgery patients should be aware that several operations might be needed to achieve a satisfactory overall body contour. It is preferred to wait at least three months between operations. Body contouring procedures following massive weight loss are usually extremely gratifying for both the patient and the surgeon. The results are usually dramatic and provide a significant functional and aesthetic benefit to the patient.
Discover Your Options with Dr. Capella
Dr. Joseph F. Capella, Chief of the Division of Post-Bariatric Surgery at Hackensack University Medical Center, is a renowned expert in after weight loss surgery.
With over 10,000 body contouring procedures performed, he has the largest published series of arm lifts, thigh lifts, and body lifts in this patient group. Dr. Capella's dedication to this field is evident in his lectures, international conferences, and co-authorship of major plastic surgery textbooks. His extensive experience in bariatric surgery enhances his ability to address the unique needs of weight loss patients. Trust in his expertise for safe and effective plastic surgery outcomes.
Enhance Your Quality of Life
The abdomen is usually of greatest concern to individuals following massive weight loss. In both men and women, excess fat is stored both in the abdomen and beneath the skin of the abdominal wall. Consequently, following weight loss, there tends to be both excess abdominal wall skin and loose muscles. In addition to the aesthetic concerns, the abdomen often presents as a functional problem following weight loss. Large amounts of hanging skin along the lower abdomen can lead to the collection of moisture between the skin folds, resulting in a condition called intertriginous dermatitis.
The skin is often irritated, red, and painful. On occasion, the skin may break down and bleed or even become infected. Non-surgical means of treating this problem include keeping the skin folds dry. This can be frustrating and is only a temporary solution to the problem. Fortunately, with proper documentation, insurance companies may recognize this problem and provide coverage for the surgical removal of the excess skin, a procedure called a panniculectomy. Panniculectomy in the region of the abdomen is also referred to as an abdominoplasty or tummy tuck. The technique usually involves tightening the muscles of the abdomen and removing excess skin as well.
Addressing the excess skin of the abdomen is often very satisfactory following pregnancy but is usually inadequate following massive weight loss. As mentioned earlier, weight loss following bariatric procedures is generalized; consequently, excess skin is not just confined to the abdomen but involves the thighs and buttocks as well. For these reasons, Dr. Capella almost exclusively performs a procedure called a body lift on weight loss patients. The operation involves an abdominoplasty, thigh, and buttock lift all at one time. This technique is also often referred to as a “lower body lift” or “belt lipectomy.” The operation very effectively addresses loose skin and cellulite along the thighs and buttocks as well as the abdomen. Patients are often exhilarated just to learn that such an operation exists. While the scar is lengthy, it is confined to the bikini line and is hidden by conventional underwear, panties, and bathing suits. Both men and women find the operation very rewarding. Dr. Capella will perform a body lift along with an upper body lift for appropriate candidates. See below regarding upper body lift.
Breast size and shape often change significantly in both men and women following weight loss. The effects of aging and gravity cause the breasts to sag with time. Massive weight loss greatly accelerates this process. As women advance from their teens to twenties and into later years, the glandular portion of the breast is replaced with fat. Glandular tissue is more firm than fat. Consequently, even without weight loss, women’s breasts become less firm and consequently change shape over time.
Women who sustain significant weight loss in the fourth and fifth decades of life can have a marked change in breast size and shape. By this age, a significant portion of the breast glandular tissue has been replaced with fat, and therefore marked weight loss will lead to a rapid decrease in the amount of breast tissue. The skin, unable to retract completely, produces severely ptotic (sagging) breasts. This condition is called breast involution. The treatment options for women’s breasts following weight loss are several. If a woman desires larger, fuller breasts but has little sag, an implant alone may be satisfactory. This scenario is not the norm, however. More often, women have concerns about sag and want to be larger. In this case, a breast lift or mastopexy is needed in addition to the placement of an implant. The options for breast lifts are several. For small amounts of sag, a circumareolar technique can be used, which only involves an incision around the areola. For moderate amounts of sag, a vertical mastopexy can be used. With this technique, there is an incision around the areola as well as extending from the areola to the base of the breast. For severe sag or ptosis, an anchor-type incision may be necessary. The above-mentioned incisions are utilized in addition to one at the base of the breast. For patients not desiring to be larger and who have an adequate amount of breast tissue, a lift without an implant may produce an aesthetically satisfactory outcome.
The problems in men are similar; however, the terminology and treatment are slightly different. In the obese state, men tend to have large breasts. With weight loss, some fat and glandular tissue remains. Depending on a man’s age, degree of weight loss, and other factors mentioned above, he might end up with large breasts relative to his torso, large and/or sagging breasts, or satisfactory-appearing breasts. Large and/or sagging breasts in men are called gynecomastia. For men with large breasts following weight loss, liposuction alone may provide adequate treatment. This is not typical, however. Most men who present for treatment have concerns about both size and sag. Dr. Capella prefers to remove excess skin, breast tissue, and fat in one procedure that typically involves an incision along the base of the breast. The nipple and areola are then usually moved as a graft to a higher, more aesthetically pleasing position. Because men often have hair on their chests, scars are well concealed and thus better tolerated. Dr. Capella will very often combine breast surgery with flank and arm surgery in the weight loss patient in a procedure called an upper body lift. (See below)
Loose skin and excess fat at the arms can be a source of great consternation for both men and women following weight loss. For some patients, it is of greater concern than any other area. A patient may feel forced to wear long-sleeved shirts at all times. There are several excellent surgical options for after weight loss surgery patient seeking improvement in the appearance of their arms. Liposuction alone of the arms, however, is very unlikely to be a good option and will, in most cases, lead to contour irregularities of the arm.
In addition, Dr. Capella does not feel that weight loss patients achieve satisfactory results with procedures limited to only the armpit. For individuals with excess skin and fat limited to the armpit and upper arm, a procedure with a scar in the armpit and along the upper third of the inner arm in combination with liposuction can produce good results. Most weight loss patients have concerns about more than just the upper arm, particularly women. For this reason, to achieve an excellent result in these patients, a scar in the armpit is required in addition to one along the arm and extending to the elbow in most cases. Dr. Capella places the arm scar along the lower part of the inner arm, the same location where tailors place the seam of a sleeve in a dress shirt, and usually combines liposuction with these procedures. For women in their 60s and beyond, loose skin along the forearm, beyond the elbow may be a concern. For these patients, Dr. Capella will extend the incision onto the inside of the forearm.
Most massive weight loss patients who express concerns about sagging and deflated breasts will also have concerns about the area to the side of the breasts and armpit region, often called the flanks. In addition, this group of patients will often be unhappy about loose and sagging skin at the arms. For this reason, Dr. Capella will very often combine breast contouring surgery with the correction of the flank and arm regions in a procedure called an upper body lift. This combination can be for both men and women.
Massive weight loss can accelerate the appearance of facial aging. With weight loss, the fatty layer beneath the skin thins as occurs with normal aging but at a much faster rate. Part of what creates a youthful appearance is a thicker layer of fat in certain parts of the face. With age and significant weight loss, the laugh lines and other wrinkles on the face become more prominent. One important difference between the effects of the normal aging process and rapid weight loss is the excess skin that develops along the neck. The neck serves as a repository for fat in most obese individuals. Weight loss consumes much but not all of this fat. Consequently, weight loss patients often complain of excess skin and fat at the neck.
The treatment options for weight loss patients are essentially the same as their non-weight loss counterparts. A facelift, which almost always incorporates a neck lift, treats very effectively the deep wrinkles of the face as well as the excess fat and skin of the neck. The technique of face lifting usually involves an incision beginning in the scalp above the ear, continuing immediately in front of the ear, and extending around and behind the ear and just inside the hairline of the scalp below the ear. The skin of the face and neck is elevated, and the excess is removed. Other components of the operation usually include tightening the superficial muscle layer just deep into the skin and removing the excess fat from the neck. Face lifting can significantly refresh the appearance of weight loss patients.
Your after weight loss surgery offers immediate results, but depending on your surgical procedures, optimal results may take up to two years to fully appear. Enjoy smoother contours, newfound clothing options, increased motivation, and enhanced confidence. Maintain a healthy lifestyle for long-lasting results. While aging may cause some changes, your hard-earned positive outcomes can endure.
Embrace the Positive
Allow your body time to heal and rest following your after weight loss surgery while maintaining mobility. Ease back into work with gentle walks and approved exercises to rebuild strength. Results will develop over six to 12 months, so be patient as your new body form and contour take shape.
There is always a surgical risk with any surgery. However, Dr. Capella has extensive experience. Results and risks differ for each individual. Consult with Dr. Capella to discuss your concerns further.
The costs associated with your procedure will be determined by the extent and number of procedures involved. A personalized assessment with Dr. Capella will provide detailed information about the specific costs of your desired treatment plan.
Schedule your consultation to discuss your body contouring concerns with Dr. Joseph Capella.
Give yourself the gift of expert care and world-class results. Schedule your remote or in-person consultation with Dr. Capella to receive care from the field’s foremost authority in body contouring after weight loss.
545 Island Road, Suite 2A, Ramsey, New Jersey 07446