Dr. Steven Fagien & Dr. Elbert Vaca

Thigh Lift

Body Procedures

A thigh lift is a surgical procedure used to address excess skin and/or fat of the thighs. There are several variations of this surgery, and it is individually tailored to each patient based on several factors including:

  • Amount of extra skin
  • Amount of extra fatty tissue
  • Location of excess fatty tissue and excess skin
  • Skin elasticity (i.e. the quality of your skin and how much the skin is expected to retract after surgery)
  • History of significant weight loss
  • Patient’s overall health
What are the different types of thigh lift surgery?

A consultation with Dr. Vaca will help determine which type of thigh lift surgery will best help address your concerns. Liposuction is typically combined with a thigh lift; however, the amount and location of extra & loose skin helps determine which technique is most appropriate. There are several types of thigh lift surgery including:

Liposuction Only

While this is technically not considered a thigh lift, liposuction alone may be helpful in younger patients with extra fatty tissue and little to no extra skin with good elasticity (i.e. patients whose skin is expected to retract after surgery). Liposuction is performed via very small incisions to remove extra fatty tissue.

Limited Incision Thigh Lift

If there is extra skin limited to the upper inner thigh, then a smaller incision may be used to remove upper thigh skin along the inner aspect of the thigh. This incision is placed along the crease where the thigh meets the groin crease.

Traditional Thigh Lift

If your inner thigh has extra skin and fatty tissue from your upper thigh down to your knee, then you are likely a candidate for a traditional thigh lift. Liposuction is often used to remove extra fatty tissue and improve the contour of your thigh. An incision is then made along the inner part of your thigh to remove extra skin. This procedure is an effective way to address larger areas of loose skin.

Am I a good candidate for thigh lift surgery?

Healthy nonsmokers with a stable weight and realistic expectations make better surgical candidates. If you have a history of weight loss surgery (i.e. gastric bypass), it is especially important to make sure you have no vitamin, mineral or protein deficiencies to minimize the risk of healing problems after surgery.

What are the risks of Thigh Lift surgery?

All surgical procedures carry a degree of uncertainty and risk. Thankfully, the risk of any major complication is rare.

While every attempt is made to make the scars as faint and hidden as possible, scars may be more prominent in some patients. Occasionally, these scars may require revision. Poor healing can occur – this is more common in smokers. Unfavorable scarring is more common in patients who experience poor healing.

Infection and bleeding are rare but can occur. Injury to the nerves that provide sensation to the inner arm and upper forearm is rare but can occur. This can result in numbness or decreases sensation in these areas.

There is the possibility of developing a fluid collection which may require drainage.

During surgery, every attempt is made to make the contour of your thigh as best as possible. However, in patients with very loose and stretched skin, the skin is more prone to re-stretch and loosen over time. This is more common in patients who have had significant weight loss.

Meet Dr. Vaca

Dr. Vaca

Dr. Elbert E. Vaca is a Plastic & Reconstructive Surgeon who completed his medical training at The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine and Northwestern Memorial Hospital.
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Meet Dr. Fagien

Dr. Fagien

Dr. Steven Fagien is one of the foremost oculoplastic surgeons in the United States and the world. He completed his medical training at the University of Florida and a fellowship in oculoplastic surgery at the University of Illinois Eye and Ear Infirmary.
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