Weight changes and pregnancies can leave extra skin and fat around the waist. The excess skin and fat can be removed with a variety of techniques. The technique chosen is based on the anatomy of the patient.
In a standard abdominoplasty, excess skin and fat are removed from the abdomen in an ellipse. The upper and lower abdominal tissue are sewn together, leaving a horizontal scar. Sometimes, liposuction of the sides of the abdomen is also performed to improve the contour.
The extra skin and fat from the abdomen can safely be transferred to the breasts (DIEP or SIEA flap) for reconstruction in patients that have breast cancer or patients at high risk of developing breast cancer.
The following are photographs of a woman before, and 2 months after abdominoplasty.
Some patients have a large amount of excess skin and fat on the waist in the front and the back. The excess skin and fat can be removed from both areas (front of belly extending to back). This fat can be safely transferred to the breasts in very thin patients who require enough fat for breast reconstruction. The first in the world circumferential torso lift breast reconstruction (6 flap breast reconstruction) was successfully done in February 2017 by Dr. Vasile with her highly trained team in Westchester, NY.
Weight changes can leave excess skin and fat on the thighs. The excess skin and fat can be removed from the thighs, and used for breast reconstruction (PAP and LTP flap).
In patients with good elastic skin quality, liposuction can be a great technique to improve the contour of many parts of the body. The procedure is done through 1 cm incisions. Liposuction can be performed alone or as an addition to another surgical procedure. Sometimes, liposuction is recommended by Dr. Vasile to further improve the contour of the abdomen/thighs/back/buttock after fat was removed from these areas for breast reconstruction.
The fat that is removed with liposuction can be processed and injected into a different part of the body. Some of the fat that is injected does not live. This technique may be an option for filling in small areas and augmenting the volume of flap breast reconstruction. It requires discussion regarding breast cancer screening because of the fat that does not live.