Lower Body Lift – Belt Lipectomy, Panniculectomy in Northern Virginia*

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Lower Body Lift Overview

After weight loss or pregnancy, some people fight with loose and excess skin. Even with diet and exercise, getting the best shape may take a lower body lift by a board-certified plastic surgeon to improve contours. Also referred to as a body lift 360, this surgery eliminates leftover skin from the lower abdomen, hips, lower back, and buttocks. The lower body skin is repositioned higher, and the underlying tissue is tightened for a smooth and toned effect. A body contouring operation can redefine the entire lower body. In Northern Virginia, Dr. Mountcastle knows that for some, it marks a final step in their transformation toward a new beautiful figure.


A panniculectomy is a type of lower body contouring that removes the pannus, which is excess skin and fat from the lower abdomen. Unlike a tummy tuck, this procedure does not tighten the abdominal muscles for cosmetic purposes. Conversely, it is often performed following a large weight loss in order to prevent or treat skin irritation, odor, and/or moisture. Those who most benefit from panniculectomy have excess fat and skin that causes health issues, like back pain, skin rashes, and/or ulcers. Additionally, ideal candidates:

  • Are in good overall health
  • Do not smoke
  • Are at or near their goal weight
  • Maintain a healthy diet
  • Are physically active
  • Have realistic expectations about the outcome of the surgery

Lower Body Lift Surgical Technique

During a lower body lift, an incision is made horizontally across the lower abdomen, circling the body. Through these incisions, excess fat pockets will be removed using liposuction and the underlying tissue and muscle will be pulled tight. An experienced surgeon will make every attempt to trim away as much loose skin as possible while protecting the incision area to minimize scarring.

Lower Body Lift During/After Surgery

All lower body lift surgeries are performed under general anesthesia in an accredited surgical facility. The duration of the surgery depends on how many procedures are performed and to what extent. It is common for a surgery of this nature to take 3 – 4 hours or longer. The recovery can also be quite trying. Most patients will be required to spend a couple of nights in the hospital. It could take two weeks or longer before work and normal activities can resume. A lower body lift can create a natural shape and a leaner, more toned figure. Patients who adhere to a healthy lifestyle can enjoy their surgical results for years.  

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Average Cost  
$12,500 - $15,000
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Lower Body Lift FAQs

How Bad is the Scarring?

While this procedure produces great results, scarring is inevitable. However, every effort is made to create clean incisions and leave a thin scar line. These incisions are also created low to follow the natural bikini line and keep them hidden if a bathing suit is worn. The scars will continue to heal and fade over time. Most patients feel their sleeker, tighter body outweighs the scarring.

Is This Surgery Painful?

Because of the extent of this procedure, patients may feel discomfort during the recovery process. For this reason, patients are required to stay in the hospital for a couple of days to be monitored and will be prescribed pain medication to help minimize pain and discomfort.

Will Insurance Apply?

Yes, insurance may cover some portion of a body lift procedure. For massive weight loss patients, there may be chronic skin infections or other issues caused by obesity. This varies by patient condition, insurance policy, and procedure. Patient benefits will be discussed during the pre-op meeting with one of our billing and insurance coordinators. 

Best Time for Surgery?

Individuals contemplating a lower body lift will need to be at or near their goal weight. If they anticipate losing a significant amount of weight, this needs to happen first. Once the weight has been lost, a physical will be required to ensure the body has stabilized enough to endure surgery.

* All information subject to change. All gallery images contain real patients and are the property of Mountcastle Plastic Surgery & Vein Institute. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.