Panniculectomy is a surgical procedure to remove excess skin and fat
from the lower abdomen. In contrast to abdominoplasty, the abdominal
muscle layer is not tightened. The procedure can significantly reduce
the appearance of a protruding abdomen. This procedure is occasionally
covered by the health insurances.
The Preoperative visit
Consultation for panniculectomy consists of a thorough discussion of
the patient's desires and concerns. An extensive evaluation of the
patient's abdomen and body contour will be performed. Photographs will
be reviewed. The available surgical options and Dr. Soltanianís
recommendations will be discussed, including the limitations and risks
of surgery. Panniculectomy may be performed in conjunction with
liposuction and other procedures.
The best candidates for panniculectomy are men and women who are in
relatively good health but are bothered by a large fat deposit or loose
abdominal skin that won't respond to diet and exercise. Patients who
intend to lose a significant amount of weight should postpone the
surgery until they have reached the desired weight.
Panniculectomy is often a good remedy for patients who have lost
significant amount of weight through dieting and exercise or bariatric
surgery who do not want to undergo a full abdominoplasty.
Panniculectomy is usually performed at a hospital under general
anesthesia. Patients are occasionally admitted for one day
post-operatively. The procedure consists of removing excess skin and fat
on the lower abdomen. The umbilicus is sometimes repositioned. The
abdominal wall can be tightened in a similar fashion as in
abdominoplasty but the insurance companies would not cover that portion
of the procedure.
Following discharge patients will have drains in place for several
days. Dr. Soltanian uses implantable catheters for continuous delivery
of pain medication directly to the site of surgery which will reduce the
need for narcotic pain medication. Patients are usually discharged with
the pain pump. The pump and the catheters do not need additional care.
Patients will return for follow-up visits on a weekly basis for the
first month. Return to normal activities is slow. Most people remain out
of work for 2-3 weeks.
Panniculectomy produces very good results for patients with excess skin.
Some women may choose to undergo liposuction of their hips or other
regions at the same time in order to achieve an enhanced result. In most
cases, the results following panniculectomy are long lasting, provided
you follow a balanced diet and exercise.