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Home » Plastic and Reconstructive » Outer Thigh Lift

Outer Thigh Lift

As we age, many people experience fluctuations in weight. Excess skin and fatty tissue can be deposited in various parts of our body. These deposits can be difficult to manage with just diet and exercise alone.

Outer thigh lift surgery, also known as lateral thigh lift, is a body shaping procedure used to create thinner outer thighs with increased tone.


Outer thigh lift procedure is indicated in patients with loose skin, massive skin folds, and fat bulges in the outer aspect of the thighs. This procedure may be an option if you are healthy, are a non-smoker and have no preexisting medical conditions such as diabetes, stroke, and heart diseases that can increase your risk of complications. It is important that you have a positive outlook and realistic expectations prior to proceeding with any body shaping surgery.

Surgical procedure.

You will be given general anesthesia or a combination of local anesthesia and intravenous sedation at the beginning of the procedure, which means you will feel no pain and will sleep throughout the procedure.

You may be recommended for liposuction along with your outer thigh lift procedure depending on your condition. The liposuction procedure begins by instilling tumescent fluid. The fluid contains adrenaline, which helps minimize bleeding and bruising, and helps in removing the tissues later during the procedure. Excess fat is removed using power-assisted liposuction. Once the excess fat is removed, an incision is made from the groin around the front and side of the hip.

The excess skin and fat is surgically removed and the remaining skin is pulled up to its new position. Small tubes or drains may be placed inside the wounds temporarily to drain any excess fluid. The surgical wounds are then closed using sutures. Surgical tape or skin adhesive may be applied for additional support. Dressings or bandages are then applied to the incisions. Your thighs may be wrapped in compression garments for a few weeks to minimize swelling.

Post-Operative Care.

You will be taken to the recovery area immediately following your outer thigh lift procedure. A thigh lift is often performed as an outpatient procedure but you may need to spend a night or two at the surgical center depending on the complexity of your surgery and your surgical wounds.

You will be prescribed pain medications to alleviate any discomfort. Antibiotics may be prescribed to prevent infection. You may expect swelling in first three days, which should improve gradually over two to six weeks. You will be instructed to keep your legs elevated above heart level to minimize swelling. Any bruising should improve within five to ten days. Your drains will be removed within one to three days and your bandages will be removed within two to four days.

You will be instructed to not apply excessive force on your surgical wounds during the healing process. Inform your doctor immediately if you have any excessive discharge from your surgical site, shortness of breath, chest pains, or unusual heartbeats.

You may usually resume

sedentary work within one to two weeks

driving in one to two weeks and

exercises in about four weeks

Surgical recovery varies from patient to patient and your doctor will give you specific instructions about diet, wound care, medications, activity restrictions, and follow-up.


Outer thigh lift is performed in such a way that the scars form in the natural creases of the groin and are hidden under panties.

Risks and complications.

Some of the potential risks include

Injury to adjacent nerves or blood vessels

Improper wound healing



Persistent pain

Skin discoloration, swelling or loss

Unfavorable scarring

Recurrent looseness of skin

Need for revision surgery

Smoking and/or any preexisting medical conditions can put you at increased risk for complications. Talk to your surgeon about any concerns you have.

Outer thigh lift is a body shaping surgical procedure for people bothered by saggy and troublesome outer thighs. Most patients benefit with smoother and youthful thighs following the surgery.

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