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Belt Lipectomy Surgery Sydney

Belt Lipectomy Sydney: 360 Excess Skin Removal Surgery

A belt lipectomy, also known as 360 belt abdominoplasty or circumferential abdominoplasty, is a body contouring surgery that can remove a large amount of skin and fat deposits from the abdomen after major weight loss.

Losing a lot of weight can leave you with a lot of excess skin. In some cases, the loose belly skin may also hang down and lead to both health and aesthetic concerns – an abdominal apron on the front, sides and rear.

In addition to patient concerns about the appearance of the excess tissue, overhanging skin and fat can cause skin irritation, rashes, chafing, poor hygiene, physical discomfort, and back pain.

While a tummy tuck or abdominoplasty can fix only the front of the abdomen, the 360 belt abdominoplasty also removes excess skin and fat from around the hips and back.

Dr Jeremy Hunt is an experienced plastic surgeon in Wollongong and Sydney who offers belt lipectomy to post-bariatric patients who have lost substantial weight. He has experience performing circumferential abdominoplasty to help you attain your more desired belly, waist, and lower back. The results will not be the same for each patient, so you should ensure to explain your goals to Dr Hunt beforehand.

Find out more about Dr Jeremy HuntMake an Enquiry

What Is a Belt Lipectomy?

A belt lipectomy is a post weight loss surgery that removes the extra tissue (fat and skin) from your belly, waist (beltline), and back in one procedure. A circumferential lipectomy can surgically remove the stretched skin, loose fat, and address the area from the chest down to the hips and all the way around to the back.

There are many reasons why a person may gain a significant amount of weight. It could be pregnancy, lack of exercise, unhealthy eating habits, or simply genetics. When you gain weight, your skin stretches to make room for the extra fat and consequently loses some of its elasticity (tensile strength).

You can lose a lot of weight after gastric bypass surgery, sleeve gastrectomy, gastric banding, or childbirth. In many people, however, the skin does not completely retract after massive weight loss. This can result in areas of excess skin and fat around the belly, hips, and lower back. Getting a belt lipectomy can help you get rid of excess skin.

How Is a Belt Lipectomy Different from an Abdominoplasty?

An abdominoplasty or tummy tuck and a belt lipectomy are both procedures that remove extra skin and fat after major weight loss. They both aim to reshape the abdomen according to the patient’s needs and desires.

A belt lipectomy is different from an abdominoplasty since:

  • An abdominoplasty removes skin and fat from the front of the stomach only; whereas a 360 abdo also removes tissue on the sides, hips, and back
  • An abdominoplasty also tightens the abdominal muscles while the circumferential abdominoplasty doesn’t usually involve split muscle tightening (Diastasis recti)
  • A circumferential abdominoplasty may not reposition the navel as the traditional abdominoplasty does
  • A belt lipectomy can lift the buttocks and outer hips, unlike an abdominoplasty

A 360 belt lipectomy may be a more desirable surgical option for you than an abdominoplasty if you have excess skin and fat on your belly, hips, and back. If you just have a small amount of excess tissue in the front lower abdomen, then a mini abdominoplasty or traditional full abdominoplasty might be better options for you than a 360 belt lipectomy.

Why Patients Might Consider Belt Lipectomy Surgery

Depending on your motives for seeking surgery, and your individualised surgical plan, a belt lipectomy surgery may be undertaken for a number of different reasons, including:

  • Addressing aesthetic concerns about excess skin
  • Helping to improve mobility in cases where excess skin impedes movement
  • Helping to improve rashes and skin irritation
  • Reduction in infections caused by excess skin

With a circumferential lipectomy, Dr Hunt helps his patients complete their weight loss journey and achieve the aesthetic results they’ve been aiming for. This will be in accordance with individual surgical plans.

Am I suitable for Belt Lipectomy Surgery?

You can benefit from circumferential lipectomy surgery if:

  • You’ve had dramatic weight loss that resulted in loose skin on your belly, hips, and lower back
  • You’re having health problems related to the overhanging excess skin (rash, irritation, infection, pain)
  • You’ve reached a stable weight (goal weight) through diet, exercise, or weight loss surgery and are looking to remove excess skin, especially the midsection
  • You’ve already had children and are not planning on getting pregnant in the future

Ideally you will have a BMI below 30, but some patients between a BMI or 30-35 may be acceptable. Please aim to be near your ideal weight before surgery as having extra weight increases risks of surgical complications.

All in all, a 360 abdominoplasty is an option for extreme weight loss patients who want to shape and contour their entire midsection.

About Belt Lipectomy Surgery

A belt lipectomy surgery is performed while you’re under general anaesthesia.

  • First, your surgeon will make an incision low in your belly just above your pubic area. The incision will extend all the way to the back where your butt and lower back come together (like a belt)
  • Then, the skin and fat layers are separated from the underlying muscle layer. Excess fat and skin flaps are cut and removed
  • Next, your surgeon will pull down the remaining skin and fat of your abdomen, back, and sides while pulling up the skin of your outer thighs and buttocks. This can help remove irregularities.
  • After that, the upper and lower skin edges are sutured together
  • Finally, a sterile wound dressing will be applied and you will be transferred to the recovery room to wake up

The 360 belt is major surgery and can take around 4-6 hours to complete.

Download Guide

Excess Skin Reduction Guide

The excess skin reduction guide guide has been created by Dr Hunt and his team as a useful tool to help you plan and consider these procedures.

Throughout the guide, we will discuss the ins and outs of different types of surgery what makes a suitable candidate, pre-surgery planning answers to the most frequently asked questions received from patients.

Recovery after a Belt Lipectomy

Recovery after body contouring surgery differs from one person to another, but you can expect the following after your belt lipectomy:

  • Drainage tubes will be placed at your incision site for several days to collect extra fluid
  • You’ll have swelling that starts to go down 3-6 weeks post-belt lipectomy. Most of the swelling disappears 2-3 months after the surgery
  • You’ll likely be asked to wear compression garments to control the swelling during your recovery period
  • Bruising that peaks during the first two weeks and then starts to fade within a month
  • Pain and discomfort are most noticeable during the first two to three days following 360 abdo and then start to subside

Most patients take around 4 weeks to return to normal activity and 6 weeks to resume strenuous exercise after a circumferential lipectomy. Make sure you follow your surgeon’s recommendations for recovery after belt abdominoplasty.

Risks of Belt Lipectomy

Procedures that involve incisions always carry risks for every patient. Although Dr Hunt is experienced and many patients achieve results they are happy with, patients should still make sure they are aware of the risks before their surgery. Surgical risks of a belt lipectomy may include:

  • Bleeding
  • Nerve damage
  • Poor scarring
  • Healing problems
  • Blood clots
  • Reactions to anaesthesia
  • Future surgeries
  • Hematoma (build-up of blood under the skin)
  • Seroma (build-up of fluid under the skin)
  • Wound infection
  • Numbness around the incisions

Next Steps

Always Do Your Research

Book Your First Consultation

Prepare for your Plastic Surgeon Consultation

  • Bring a friend or relative to help discuss the information.
  • Take lots of notes and read the documents provided.
  • Dress in simple clothes as you may need to undress.
  • Bring your GP Referral and your test results.

Find out More about Dr Hunt Make an Enquiry

Considering Belt Lipectomy Surgery?

What is the difference between 360 liposuction and a belt lipectomy?

Liposuction removes unwanted fat using a suction device (cannula). It does not remove skin flaps or excess skin rolls. A belt lipectomy, on the other hand, surgically excises the excess tissue and tightens the overlying skin.

Which is better: a belt lipectomy or an abdominoplasty?

It depends on where your skin problem area is. If you want to get rid of extra skin located on the abdomen, then an abdominoplasty (tummy tuck) might be better for you. Whereas if you also want to tighten the areas around your waist, back, and hips, then a belt lipectomy might suit you better.

What should I expect during my belt lipectomy consultation?

During a belt lipectomy consultation, your surgeon will take a look at your medical history and review your overall health. Then your plastic surgeon will discuss with you your goals and surgery options to help you decide whether a belt lipectomy is an appropriate choice.

What are potential risks and complications of Belt Lipectomy Surgery?

All surgery comes with some potential risks and complications:

  • Hematoma (build-up of blood under the skin)
  • Seroma (build-up of fluid under the skin)
  • Wound infection
  • Numbness around the incisions

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About Dr Jeremy Hunt

Dr Hunt has worked with thousands of patients across his 20-year career. This is reflected in his role as Spokesperson for the ASPS – Australian Society of Plastic Surgery. Dr Hunt is also a Fellow of the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons (FRACS) and Supervisor of Plastic Surgery Training at Sydney Children’s Hospital.

Dr Hunt has a strong interest in helping his patients achieve their desired results by employing the most appropriate practices for each individual patient.

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