Anyone who has succeeded in the tremendously difficult challenge of losing a significant amount of weight—whether through diet and exercise alone or through the one of the various surgical weight loss methods now available—receives the immediate rewards of improved health and well-being, increased life expectancy, relief from a bunch of weight-related disabilities, and huge sense of personal accomplishment.
However, there can be one area of lingering disappointment for many people following even the most dramatic weight improvement. The inner well-being that successful dieters or weight-loss patients feel may not be quite matched by what they see when they look in the mirror.
The human body is immensely resilient, and many of the harmful health effects of obesity may reverse themselves almost automatically once the pounds are gone and the body becomes more active.
But some of the damage is not so readily repaired. As prominent Boston plastic surgeon Dr. Michael Tantillo notes, “while weight loss procedures are helping people live healthier and manage their weight, loose skin will not re-contour to a slimmer body on its own.”
Our skin is one of the most delicate and fragile elements of our physical makeup, and even the most rigorous exercise program can’t restore its full strength and tightness. Once skin or muscle has been stretched to a certain point, they cannot re-tighten naturally to fit a smaller body. The flesh may droop or sag to a degree that is not only unsightly, but uncomfortable, and that clothing cannot entirely conceal.
These hard facts have lead to a growing interest in post-weight-loss cosmetic surgery procedures that can help people achieve the final step in recovering a slimmer and more youthful body image.
Cosmetic surgeons like the Harvard-trained Tantillo offer a range of procedures such as liposuction, abdominoplasty (tummy tuck), breast lifts, arm lifts and body contouring, which can help people achieve their full goal of improved health and appearance.
Dr. Tantillo received his M.D. from the University of Alabama School of Medicine and his advanced plastic surgery training at Harvard University, where he is on the Medical School faculty. He is a certified plastic surgeon in Boston (www.cosmeticsurgeonboston.com).
To those considering plastic surgery after weight loss in Boston, he stresses the importance of choosing a well-qualified and highly experienced surgeon who not only stays current with the latest surgical practices, but also communicates personally with the patient before and after surgery. The ideal doctor should take into account patients’ full history, physical condition, and goals in order to help them understand and decide which treatment or combination of treatments will give them the results they seek.
For many people, looking their best through cosmetic surgery can provide the ultimate motivation to adopt and maintain a new health regimen following major weight loss. “For people who have lost a lot of weight, plastic surgery can really…help them sustain a healthier lifestyle for years to come,” adds Dr. Tantillo.