The lower body lift (LBL) is a comprehensive body contouring procedure done after massive weight loss. Because of the magnitude of the operation and demands of subsequent care, it has traditionally been viewed as an inpatient procedure. However, it is believed that with surgical experience combined with fine tuning of perioperative and postoperative care, lower body lifting is safe as an outpatient in properly selected patients.
In this article, we retrospectively review and evaluate our series of 35 patients (19 outpatient and 16 inpatient), who have undergone lower body lifting after massive weight loss. Operative technique, perioperative management, and postoperative care are reviewed.
Compared to the inpatients, the body mass index of the outpatients was significantly less: 24.99 compared to 30.89 kg/m2, respectively (P = 0.002 χ2 value 7.886). Reoperations did not occur in any of the 19 outpatient LBL procedures, but were necessary in 6 of the 16 inpatients, all for wound closure (P < 0.001 χ2 value 25.811). No patient in either group had thromboembolic occurrences, clinically apparent hematomas, and none required transfusions.
Outpatient LBL is safe and effective when performed on the properly selected patient. Avoidance of hospitalization has importance in minimizing nosocomial infections or other complications. There is also potential great influence on access to care due to reduced costs associated with outpatient surgery centers, compared to hospitals. As such, a financial barrier is alleviated to many who cannot otherwise afford these procedures after weight loss.
From the *Section of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Department of Surgery, University of Michigan Health Systems, Ann Arbor, MI; and †Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Department of Surgery, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL.
Received January 25, 2013, and accepted for publication, after revision, January 30, 2013.
Presented at the Southeastern Society of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeons, 2012.
Conflicts of interest and sources of funding: none declared.
Reprints: Bruce A. Mast, MD, FACS, Division of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Department of Surgery, University of Florida, PO Box 100138, Gainesville, FL 32611-7200. E-mail: Bruce.Mast@surgery.ufl.edu.