Thigh Lift

After having a significant amount of weight loss secondary to gastric bypass surgery or losing the weight from exercises, you end up with excess skin laxity throughout the thigh and leg region. Overall the excess redundant skin tissues may now be a hindrance to your daily activities and physical appearance. You may not be able to put on the smaller sizes clothing like you hope you would after losing the weight, you may not be able to exercises properly, which then prevents you from obtaining good body tone. Thus, thigh lift surgery to remove the hanging, redundant skin may be ideal to achieve aesthetic looking thigh.

Schedule Your Thigh Lift Consultation With Dr. Vu Today By Calling 503.601.2910 or Toll Free 866.297.8522.

This is a procedure covered by CosmetAssure. Learn how Dr. Vu protects you from any potential financial burden from complications by visiting our Complications Assurance page.


Thigh Lift Surgery – A Quick Glance

Who Is A Thigh Lift Candidate?

If you have experienced a loss of skin elasticity of the thigh, hip, or buttock areas. If your skin area is saggy, has an orange peel, flabby and/or dimpled appearance. If your thigh appearance improves dramatically when you lift the lax skin. If you are self-conscious about your lower body appearance.

Thigh Lift Intended Results

Tighter, more attractive thigh and buttock skin. Improved contours. Decreased irregularities in skin surface.

Thigh Lift Procedure Description

The procedure is performed under general anesthesia on an outpatient basis unless otherwise advised by the surgeon.

Dr. Vu will show you what procedures are available to solve your particular problem. Wide variations in the design of the incisions to meet clothing or personal desires are possible.

Lifting the inner thighs requires only short incisions extending from the anterior part of the thigh/groin crease around to the buttock crease. Lateral or anterior thigh lifts can be performed as separate procedures if desired.

Lifting the entire thigh and buttock (circumferential lower body lift) will require much longer incisions that start in the buttock crease, extend around the groin, up over the side of the abdomen, over the flank and across the back. The buttocks can be lifted with upper or lower scars.

Thigh Lift Surgery Recuperation And Healing

The patient is placed in a compression garment (similar to a long-line elastic support girdle) at the end of surgery to reduce swelling and assist in the natural shrinking and tightening of the skin.

Smaller thigh lifts: Initial discomfort is usually easily controlled with prescription pain medication.

Larger thigh lifts: One or two nights care in a skilled nursing facility or hospital are usually required. This allows for pain injections, intravenous catheters, etc.

Bruising and swelling usually subside within a month, strenuous activities are usually possible in 6 weeks and almost all symptoms are gone in 4-6 months.


The specific risks and the suitability of this procedure for a given individual can be determined only at the time of consultation. All surgical procedures have some degree of risk. Minor complications that do not affect the outcome occur occasionally. Major complications are unusual.

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Thigh Lift Surgery Potential Risks

No surgeries are performed without risks. Dr. Vu’s goal is to perform the planned procedure, take extra precaution during surgery, and most important of all is to be safe and yet achieve utmost optimal outcomes. Following are some of the potential risks that are commonly discussed about regarding thigh lift surgery.

A. Infection

The location of the incisions near the anus and the inevitability of some fecal contamination increases the possibility of wound infection. To reduce contamination and infection, the nursing staff will ask you to shower and wash the entire perineal and pelvic girdle with soap and water after each bowel movement.

After drying, coat the incision lines with a thin coating of antibiotic ointment.


B. Excessive swelling

Occasionally, the superficial lymphatic system in the medial part of the groin is interrupted during the surgical process. If this should occur, excessive swelling will probably occur for several weeks as the lymphatic channels form again.

This is an uncommon problem, but it requires some patience and understanding if it does occur.

C. Asymmetry, uneven skin contours

Minimal asymmetry of the scars and of the skin contours may occur. Every attempt will be made to make the result as equal as possible. You must understand that very few people are entirely symmetrical prior to surgery and, healing may not occur evenly from side to side.

D. Scars

Standard incisions for a thigh lift are usually placed as high in the groin as possible in order to reduce their visibility when you are wearing panties or a bathing suit. This places the incisions and scars close to the anus and sexual organs.

It usually takes a month or two for tenderness and tightness to disappear and for the scars and area to feel completely comfortable.

E. Planning the incision

Because the weight of the inner thigh skin “hangs” on the scars, the scars will gradually tend to pull downward. The scars may migrate interiorly as much as 1-2 cm (

Because of the weight of the thigh skin, and the location of the incisions, the ultimate scars will probably widen no matter how well they have been repaired.

Dr. Vu will discuss the risks of scar widening carefully during your consultation as well as during our preoperative period. You need to understand that there is a wide variability in HOW the incisions can be planned.

If you do not completely understand the information, ask Dr. Vu to talk to you again before surgery. Observe the marking of the incisions carefully and make your wishes known.

F. Inability to meet your expectations

People having thigh lifts hope or fantasize that the thigh lift surgery will make their thighs look perfect. In truth, this seldom occurs. Thigh lift surgery makes your thighs look better – not perfect.

G. Wound separation

Because of the unusual tension on thigh lift incisions and the tendency for wound infections and inflammation, wound separation and breakdown in localized areas occurs somewhat more often than in other surgeries.

Although this is not a common problem (if the skin is cleansed properly — see INFECTION above), it can still occur. Local wound care, dressings, and time usually lead to normal healing, but there can be a delay of several weeks or more.

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Thigh Surgery Postoperative Care

Special attentions are placed during your postoperative period. Dr. Vu’s goal is to make sure that you are comfortable after you leave the surgery center, and have proper instructions how to take care of yourself in order for you to have a pleasant surgical experience.

A. Position

Because of the location of your incisions, it is impossible to avoid lying on them. Move as carefully as possible. Try to put as little stress on the incision lines as possible. Change position at least every 30 minutes.

B. Bleeding

Small amounts of oozing and bleeding are very common. If this is more than slow staining of the gauze, apply firm pressure for 20-30 minutes before calling the office.

Should heavy bleeding occur (very rare), apply firm pressure and call us at 503-601-2910 immediately.

C. Compression garments

If you have had suction of your knees, thighs, hips, or abdomen, Dr. Vu will have put a compression garment on you at the end of surgery. The extra pressure this garment provides helps reduce swelling and discomfort. You should not remove this garment at all until the second or third day after surgery. After that, feel free to remove the garment temporarily for laundering. We want you to have circumferential pressure for 4-6 weeks, but you may switch to an exercise garment (Lycra or Spandex) whenever it feels comfortable to slip it on or off, as you will have to do so in order to go to the bathroom.

D. Walking

You must get up and walk some every day. As you heal, you will be able to do more and more.

E. Tightness

The areas operated on will initially feel tight and swollen. During this initial healingtime, we want you to progressively do the activities of daily living as much as is tolerable.


F. Numbness

Swelling: Postoperative swelling will gradually disappear during a 4-6 month period. If you have small areas of numbness on your thighs, they usually disappear gradually over several months.

G. Activities

You probably should not plan on returning to work for at least 10-14 days if your job is sedentary. If your job requires lifting, etc., wait 4-8 weeks before returning. After the first 2-3 weeks, you may walk as much as is tolerable. Do not return to heavy or aerobic exercise for at least 4-6 weeks. Let your body tell you what it can tolerate.

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Schedule Your Thigh Lift Consultation With Dr. Vu Today By Calling 503.601.2910 or Toll Free 866.297.8522.

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