Santa Barbara Liposuction after Weight Loss? Cosmetic Surgeon Dr. Terry Perkins Answers Your Questions

Cosmetic surgeon Dr. Terry Perkins answers reader’s questions about Santa Barbara plastic surgery. If you have a question about cosmetic surgery, especially face lifts and liposuction in Santa Barbara, send Dr. Perkins an email with “Ask the Cosmetic Surgeon” in the subject line.

Q: Hi Dr. Perkins. I have just lost over 100 pounds after being over weight for many years! I am so excited with my “new me” but what bothers me the most is the excess skin on my upper arms, thighs and stomach. Tell me more about the skin removal procedure and will my health insurance cover it?


A: First of all, I’d like to say Congratulations for such an impressive feat! I have treated patients before in your situation and, like you, most of them have worked very hard to take the weight off and having the excess skin removed is their “prize” at the end of the race, so to speak. My patients have gotten excellent results and are very happy to be able to wear shorts, sleeveless shirts, bathing suits, etc., without having excess skin hanging on them.
All the liposuction and body contouring procedures would be done out of my Santa Barbara Cosmetic Surgery Center facility and you would be able to choose the treatments you want and have them done together or separately. Please understand that since I have not seen you in person I am giving you the most likely scenario(s) for each treatment and my recommendation would be for you to schedule a plastic surgery consultation with me at 805.563.0000 so we can tailor the body contouring procedures to your specific needs.
    • Arm Liposuction and Arm Skin Removal: The excess skin on the upper arm often looks like a “bat wing” hanging down. If there is fat, the fat can be liposuctioned. In the case of too much loose skin, the skin is removed leaving a scar on inside of the arm, above the elbow and will not be visible from the front or back. If there is only a small amount of loose skin, the removal can often be confined to or near the armpit – which means minimal or no scar visibility.


    • Abdomen Liposuction and Abdomen Skin Removal (Santa Barbara Tummy Tuck): If a smaller amount of skin needs to be removed, a “mini” tummy tuck is usually sufficient. The mini tummy tuck is done with a small incision that will lie at the upper edge of the pubic hair (similar to a C-section scar). If a larger portion of skin needs to be removed, a tummy tuck can be done, where the abdominal muscles are usually sewn together to further flatten the lower abdomen and the incision may be extended from hip to hip.


  • Thigh Liposuction and Thigh Skin Removal: If there is fat to be removed, it can be done through liposuction on the inner and outer (“saddlebag”) thighs. If skin removal is needed, this is done for the inner thighs. The incision line will lie on the groin and upper thigh area so that it is hidden.
As for your question about health insurance, we do not take health insurance and, in most cases, liposuction and body contouring procedures are not covered. However, we will provide you with any information you need so that you may make a claim with your insurance company if appropriate. We do have a payment plan through Care Credit.


You can view “before and after” photos on our Cosmetic Surgery Center website of all the procedures discussed above and more!
Dr. Perkins sees patients in Santa Barbara. Call for a consultation today at 805.563.0000. In many cases, if you decide to go ahead with the cosmetic surgery procedure(s) of your choice, your surgery can be scheduled within two to four weeks of your consultation.

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