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Post-Bariatric Surgery

Post-Weight Loss Body Contouring

What is Body Contouring?

Cosmetic surgery after dramatic weight loss reduces excess skin and fat left behind after major weight loss. Its goal is to restore attractive proportions by removing the sagging skin around the face, neck, upper arms, breasts, abdomen, buttocks and thighs that creates a misshapen contour. Although these procedures leave scars, most patients find them to be an acceptable tradeoff for an improved appearance.

Following bariatric surgery, modern insurance inclusion criteria for a ‘covered benefit’ for plastic surgery includes: greater than one year after bariatric surgery, greater than 90 pound weight loss, and a symptomatic pannus of the lower abdomen which extends beneath the lowest pubic hair line. Most insurance carriers will authorize a surgery called a ‘panniculectomy’ (the resection of a pannus). Typically this does not involve preservation of the umbilicus if included in the pannus. Many patients request a more cosmetic result and opt for an abdominoplasty with panniculectomy. There is an additional cost associated with the abdominoplasty. The abdominoplasty is usually combined with an extension to the posterolateral flank to avoid any unsightly deformities in the flanks after the surgery. This extended abdominoplasty is combined with liposuction in the flank region, which helps with the overall contour.

What to expect during the Body Contouring procedure?

All body contouring procedures require large incisions to remove excess skin. In many cases, these incisions may be extensive. Incision length and pattern depend on the amount and location of excess skin to be removed, as well as personal preference and your doctor’s surgical judgment. Advanced techniques usually allow incisions to be placed in strategic locations where they can be hidden by most types of clothing, but this is not always the case.

Gastric Sleeve

Gastric Band


Duodenal Switch

Body contouring is often performed in stages. Your particular condition and goals, as well as your plastic surgeon’s best judgment, will all influence how your doctor defines a surgical plan. While it may have taken you two years or more to lose all the excess weight, it may take equally as long for the results of your body contouring to be complete.

What to expect during the recovery for the Body Contouring procedure?

Follow all postoperative instructions. This will include information about wearing compression garments and the level of activity that is safe for you. Your doctor will alert you to the signs of problems to watch for, such as signs of infection. It is important to realize that the amount of time it takes for recovery varies based on what your surgery entails. Here is an idea of some basic precautions and instructions to help your recovery go as smoothly as possible.

To find out more about available treatments and procedures, request a consultation with Dr. Moulton-Barrett at one of his Bay Area offices. Board certified plastic surgeon Rex Moulton-Barrett, M.D., offers advanced care and procedures for Bay Area residents. He has offices in Alameda and Brentwood, CA.

Our Clinics

Alameda Clinic

2070 Clinton Ave
Fourth Floor
Alameda, CA 94501

Phone  (510) 864-1800


Brentwood Clinic

1280 Central Blvd
Suite J-5
Brentwood, CA 94513

Phone  (925) 240-8775




Alameda Location:

2070 Clinton Ave, Alameda, CA 94501


Brentwood Location

1280 Central Blvd, Suite J-5, Brentwood, CA 94513