The incision pattern used in the inner thigh lift surgery is primarily determined by the location of excess skin. In general, massive weight loss patients should expect longer scars to remove more redundant skin.
Basically, there are two ways to accomplish the inner thigh lift surgery: short scar and standard medial thigh lift.
In short-scar inner thigh lift, the resulting scar lies precisely at the groin and thus well hidden by the patient’s underwear. However, it is only suitable for individuals with mild tissue laxity.
In massive weight loss patients, a wedge of excess skin is also removed where the thigh meets the pubic area, resulting in the appearance of groin scar. But another vertical scar that extends down to their legs, almost reaching their knees, is also required for additional contouring.
All efforts are made to ensure that the vertical scar remains on the inner aspect of the legs. For this reason proper wound closure in which there is no or very little tension on skin is particularly critical.
Without tension on the skin surface, the scars are less likely to migrate or thicken, according to California Surgical Institute website.
The wounds are closed in several deep layers so the skin surface will not receive excessive tension. Butterfly stitches, also called Steristrips, can further reduce the tension.
Butterfly stitches are narrow adhesive strips that hold the edges of a wound in an attempt to encourage the scar to remain linear and “unobtrusive.”
While inner thigh lift is commonly performed as a critical part of a full body lift after massive weight loss, it is rarely combined with tummy tuck due to the “opposing” tensions of these two procedures, which could lead to poor healing and less than optimal scar.
Tummy tuck elevates the mons pubis to some extent, while the inner thigh lift creates a “downward pull.” For this reason it is best to perform them separately to avoid healing problems.
Most patients are able to return to work after 2-3 weeks, although they may have to avoid rigorous activities for a few more weeks.