When you decide to undergo bariatric weight loss surgery, you will have plenty of questions about the effects. Whether you choose gastric bypass, gastric sleeve, or the Lap-Band procedure, the aftercare, diet and exercise plans, and changes to your daily habits are something to consider. Many patients also wonder if drastic, relatively quick weight loss will result in excess skin, stretch marks, or scarring that might require cosmetic surgery.
Losing a large amount of weight in a short amount of time tends to leave people with excess skin. After years of carrying excess weight, it’s tough for your skin to rebound. Sometimes you can control this on your own, other times, cosmetic surgery (often called body contouring surgery) is the best option.
Will I Need Body Contouring?
The short answer is, “it depends”. Bariatric surgery is designed to give patients steady, incremental weight loss that is gradual over time. It’s specifically designed to help the elasticity in your skin rebound during your weight loss. This will help reduce the need for body contouring surgery, but some patients will still find the need. For example, younger patients have higher elasticity in their skin. Also, if you have been carrying excess weight for a shorter period, your skin is more likely to rebound.
Bariatric weight loss patients sometimes choose cosmetic surgery for more than just aesthetic reasons. Too much excess skin on the body can cause problems like rashes or infections – even mobility problems.
Just like with the rest of your weight loss journey, you’ll need to give your skin some time. In fact, many plastic surgeons consulting on excess skin ask patients to wait at least 3 to 6 months after their last major weight loss fluctuation to undergo skin removal surgery.
Everyone’s Weight Loss Journey is Unique
No two weight loss journey experiences are the same. Typically, patients see their peak weight loss around a year after the surgery, but the need for cosmetic surgery varies from patient to patient.
It can be difficult to predict if you will need body contouring surgery after your weight loss. Your doctor will help you best understand your specific needs–especially once your body has had time to recuperate. At SmartShape, Canada’s Trusted Bariatric Centre of Excellence, our patients are especially satisfied with the level of aftercare we provide in our Aftercare Program. It’s the secret to lasting success for our patients. If you have any questions about weight loss surgery, contact SmartShape today. We are always happy to offer free consultations with a bariatric surgeon to our patients.