A thigh lift is a procedure used for reshaping the thigh area by eliminating excess skin and fatty tissue, resulting in a firmer, smoother appearance. People who often qualify as candidates include those wanting to rid themselves of baggy, dimpled skin or patients who’ve lost an extreme amount of weight following an operation such as bariatric surgery. There are a few different types of thigh lifts based on the location of the incision.
Inner thigh lift – The incision is located in the groin fold. This is the most popular type of lift because the scar is well-hidden.
Vertical thighplasty – This procedure creates an incision from the groin crease down to the inner knee, it also has the most visible scar.
Outer thigh lift – The incision extends from the groin and around the hip.
The surgery is usually performed under general anaesthesia. The new contours of the thigh will have deep support stitches to help keep the new formation and will be closed with external sutures. Drainage tubes will be inserted in the leg to help with the draining of excess fluids, and once the fluid levels become minimal the tubes will be removed. Compression garments will be fitted to protect the incision and to aid in reduction of some of the swelling and skin tightening. Bruising and swelling of the leg and thigh area is normal following surgery with the first 48 to 72 hours being the most uncomfortable.
Most surgeons will prescribe prescription painkillers to help minimise discomfort during this time. Walking is strongly urged as soon as the patient is able, and although it may be painful, this will help to prevent dangerous clots from forming in the leg. Recovery typically depends on the type of incision used for the procedure, but can take anywhere from 3 to 5 weeks.