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Cosmetic Surgery after Bariatric Surgery

Many patients ask us about cosmetic surgery after a weight loss surgery procedure. It is a common question since most patients will experience some sort of excess or sagging skin after they have lost a significant amount of weight in a short period of time. The degree of excess skin largely rests on a combination of genetics, the specific procedure performed and the rate at which the patient loses weight.

Those who do decide that cosmetic surgery is right for them should not take it for granted. Ultimately, it is still major surgery that comes with the risks of any other surgical procedure. As a result, patients considering cosmetic surgery should work closely with us to ensure that they are ready for the procedure and that their general health lends itself to a safe and effective surgery. Below is a general guideline to candidacy for cosmetic surgery.

  • First and foremost patients should wait no less than 18 months after their primary weight loss procedure to undergo cosmetic surgery. This allows ample time for the body to heal and weight to be lost
  • Secondly, any cosmetic procedure should only be performed once patient has demonstrated that they can maintain a consistent weight over a long period of time. We do not want to see significant fluctuations in weight because it will nullify the benefits of cosmetic surgery
  • Finally, it is important for patients to understand that unlike bariatric surgery, in many cases cosmetic surgery is considered a purely elective procedure and will not be covered by insurance. Patients should ensure that they are able to pay for their surgical procedure or, if they choose financing, they understand all of the terms and conditions of the program

While some patients will wear their excess skin as a trophy, reminding themselves of their former struggles and how far they’ve come, others will want to remove the excess skin and turn a new page in their lives. We simply want to ensure that the choice to undergo cosmetic surgery is made for the right reasons and at the right time to ensure that procedure will be safe, effective and long-lasting. For more information about cosmetic surgery, feel free to bring it up at our next support group or discuss it at a follow-up appointment.