A panniculectomy is a surgical procedure to remove hanging skin and tissue on the lower abdomen.
This apron of skin is called a “pannus.” It may be the result of a dramatic weight loss, pregnancy, or aging.
What is a panniculectomy and how does it work?
Our Baltimore panniculectomy procedure will remove the unsightly drooping skin and tissue on the lower abdomen to create a smoother, flatter tummy. The excess skin and tissue can cause discomfort, chafing, and make it difficult to engage in exercise comfortably.
A panniculectomy differs from a tummy tuck, as the underlying muscle structure is not addressed. Stretch marks located on the apron of skin are removed in this procedure. You do not have to live with the discomfort and embarrassment of this condition – it can be resolved with a panniculectomy. The first step is an evaluation of your condition to determine if a panniculectomy is the right procedure for you, or if a tummy tuck would be more appropriate.
What are the benefits?
Removing the unsightly apron of skin and tissue on your lower abdomen can lead to many health and aesthetic benefits such as:
- Reduction of rashes and skin irritation on the lower abdomen
- You will feel comfortable engaging in exercise
- Reduction of back pain by the removal of the excess weight on your abdomen
- Restored feelings of confidence in your appearance
- Removal of stretch marks on the lower abdomen
- Slimmer waistline
- Clothing fits nicely, no bulges
Will insurance cover my surgery?
- The hanging skin and tissue (panniculus) is so extensive it reaches the genital area
- The panniculus is identified as the primary cause of a skin condition, such as cellulitis, skin ulcerations, or other problem that requires medical treatment
- You are living with functional impairment related to the condition that could be resolved with the surgery
Who is a candidate?
Candidates are people who have experienced significant weight loss. Many people who have undergone bariatric surgery undergo the procedure as the final step in the journey to better health. Candidates can include:
- Have been maintaining a stable weight for at least six months or longer
- Are medically safe to undergo surgery
- Are non-smokers
- Have skin irritations, rashes, or discomfort associated with excess skin
- Are committed to maintaining a healthy weight
Once you have considered the procedure, a consultation Dr. Birely, to dicuss the best approach your particular situation. Dr. Birely can address any questions or concerns while determining if a procedure could help you reduce your problem areas.
What should I expect during the procedure?
During a panniculectomy you will be placed under general anesthesia or intravenous sedation. A horizontal incision will be made between the hip bones that crosses above the pubic area. In some cases, a vertical incision or an incision around the belly button is needed. Excess skin, fat, and tissue is removed, and the incisions closed. After the procedure is complete, the area is protected with bandages and a compression garment to help alleviate swelling. Stitches and any drains will be removed after the first week.
What is recovery like after surgery, and will I need downtime?
Recovery after surgery will require four to six weeks of healing time and one to two weeks off from work or other activities. The amount of time that you will need away from work will reflect the physical demands of your job. During the recovery period you will need to refrain from any strenuous exercise or vigorous motions.
Light exercise such as short walks will help with circulation and reduce swelling. You will be restricted from lifting objects weighing over five pounds to avoid putting stress on the sutures. You will be provided with full aftercare instructions and will have several follow-up appointments with Dr. Birely to monitor your progress.
What are the risks?
All surgical procedures carry some risk. Ensure your surgery is performed by a board-certified plastic surgeon with years of experience and positive results. The risks of surgery include excessive bleeding, infection, slow healing, or reactions to anesthesia, among others. You can be confident that your surgery will be performed with the most advanced patient health and safety protocols at Artistry in Plastic Surgery in Baltimore.
Why choose Dr. Birely?
Dr. Brent Birely is board-certified in plastic and reconstructive surgery and has decades of experience helping people live happier, more confident lives. Dr. Birely and his team are dedicated to your wellness and offer a no-pressure environment where you can learn more about a panniculectomy procedure in privacy and comfort. Expect to be treated with VIP-level attention and care throughout your journey. If you wish to learn more, contact us today and schedule a consultation to receive arguably the best results after panniculectomy Baltimore has to offer.