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Frank Agullo, MD En Español

Thigh Lift

If you have too much “jiggle” when you wiggle, then it could be from extra fat that is naturally stored in your legs and thighs. This is more common among women than men, since many women tend to carry extra cellulite and fat deposits in the legs and lower half of their bodies. A “thighplasty” is another term for thigh lift surgery, which describes the process of removing excess fat and skin all around the thighs to the knee area. El Paso thighplasty surgery can improve the appearance of your legs by tightening the skin in the areas all around the front and back of your thighs – and above the knees – revealing a more desirable silhouette.

Who is the best candidate for a thigh lift procedure?

A thighplasty is often done for people who have noticed increased fat storing in their legs, either due to weight gain or shifting of weight to the lower half of their body naturally. As people age, having a slower metabolism can contribute to this, especially in less active patients.

Now you no longer have to suffer through “office butt” syndrome! This is a term informally applied to people who have worked at a sedentary job that inhibits frequent exercise and movement, such as prolonged sitting positions. Especially in women, the weight seems to gravitate to the lower hemisphere of the thighs, hips and butt.

Others who may be good candidates for a thighplasty include post-operative bariatric surgery patients who have already performed a full body contour and who want to shape or tone their inner and upper thighs. In this case, the thigh cosmetic procedure would be more of a refining measure to “tighten” and polish the already newly transformed physique.

Still other patients who do not need a full body lift or contour and who just want to target the main area of their thighs are a third type of beneficiary of a thighplasty surgery. This includes women who work out frequently and who may be in good shape through their arms, abdomens, shoulders and upper torso, but who because of genetics and DNA have a more difficult time getting rid of those fatty pockets in their legs. This surgery will make the rest of your body match and create a more harmonious and voluptuous balance, which is the primary goal of people in this category.

Different techniques for thighplasty surgery

El Paso thigh lift surgery can be done using several different methods. It really depends on the results you wish to achieve and also your body shape, size and health.

  • Option 1: Medial thigh lift. Usually the most chosen thighplasty is the inner medial thigh lift, which is done by making incisions within the folds of the groin and extends to the lower buttocks crease. People who have a lot of excess skin and fatty tissue that is spread throughout the medial thigh can benefit from this technique.
  • Option 2: Extended thigh lift. A vertical incision is placed at the groin and extends to the inner knee. This is often combined with the medial thigh lift mentioned in option 1. Also known as a vertical thighplasty, this type of thigh lift surgery is best for people with a large amount of sagging skin and/or fat circumferentially through the thigh region.
  • Option 3: Lateral thigh lift or flankplasty. An outer thighplasty involves an incision from the groin to the circumference of the hip region. This is good for people who have more fat through the hips and outer legs.
  • Option 4: Spiral lift. A spiral lift is also known as a total thigh lift. This is the only procedure that can improve the medial, anterior, lateral, and posterior thighs. A spiral lift will also improve the buttock contour by lifting and augmenting the gluteal area at the same time.

These thigh lift procedures can often be used in combination with each other to achieve the results you desire.

Commonly combined surgery procedures

People who ask for a thighplasty in El Paso often combine this simpler procedure with other day outpatient procedures. Some commonly combined surgeries with thigh lifts can be:

  • Lower body lift: Circumferential abdominoplasty is used to tighten up the buttocks, thighs and lower half of the body. It smoothes out these areas that have cellulite dimples or fat stores. Learn more about lower body lifts here.
  • Tummy tuck. Abdominoplasty involves removing extra fat and skin from the belly area to create a smoother abdominal appearance. Learn more here.
  • Liposuction. Liposuction isolates skin overlaps and fat stores to slash unwanted fat through a suction device. New technologies make this an even easier process to effectively contour the body. Read more here.

Even when combining these procedures, most of them can be performed within a one-day outpatient cosmetic surgery. Your ability to have more than one procedure in conjunction with thighplasty will largely depend on your own physical makeup. You can discuss these options with Dr. Agullo in your consultation.

Thigh Lift Surgery Preparation

Getting thighplasty is like other types of surgery in that you should consider you health and whether the end justifies the means. For many women who want a smoother, shapelier look, thigh lift surgery is a great solution and has the added benefit of improved self esteem after the healing process.

Smokers should consider quitting at least two weeks prior to and after surgery, since tobacco smoking greatly slows down the healing and can increase chances of strokes, heart problems or blood clots.

Prepare for your thigh lift surgery by:

  • Asking for at least a week off from work to ensure adequate healing.
  • Getting a friend, spouse or relative to help you get to and from the surgery, pick up your prescription, change dressings, etc.
  • Stocking up on Neosporin, gauze and peroxide to nurse wounds and change dressings.
  • Having some old towels on your mattress and bedding in case of leakage.
  • Avoiding shaving your legs right before surgery because it makes skin more porous, which can cause infection.

It is essential that you do not eat or drink anything (even water) after midnight the night before your thighplasty surgery.

The Thigh Lift Surgery and Recovery

When you go through a thighplasty, Dr. Frank Agullo will smooth out the cellulite and skin around your upper thighs, buttocks and hips. One of the above procedures will be the plan that you will achieve during your operation. Some thighplasty patients have to stay one night in the hospital or surgery center for monitoring.

You will be in the operating room for only about two to three hours. The procedure is usually done under general anesthesia. We have dedicated board certified anesthesiologists who will provide the anesthesia, upon which you will then undergo the process of thigh lift shaping and sculpting. When you wake up, you may feel groggy and Dr. Agullo’s team will monitor you to make sure your vital signs are level before your discharge.

Whether or not you will be in a lot of pain (or just sore) afterwards will largely depend on your skin type and elasticity, age, body size and shape. Every patient is unique, and some people bounce back relatively quickly, while others need more time to adjust to the healing process. However, most people go through thighplasty as a very straightforward procedure with very few complications. You should start to feel better within a few days of your surgery and then after a couple of weeks, the swelling will go down and you’ll be able to start shopping for new clothes! After a few months you can even shop for a new bathing suit!

It is important than even if you feel sore to walk or move around frequently after your thigh lift surgery to ensure proper passage of blood flow and to avoid clots. Keeping joints mobile will aid in healthy blood circulation.

Are there any risks to thigh lift surgery?

All surgeries are risky, but thighplasty only has a very low share of risks associated with this common procedure. As a patient, you can help to avoid any complications by following Dr. Agullo’s advice. He has performed hundreds of thigh lift cosmetic procedures in El Paso and was recently recognized as a Texas Super doctor Rising Star in cosmetic and reconstructive surgery in Texas Monthly. So, you’re in good hands with Dr. Frank Agullo as your Western Texas plastic surgeon.

A few rare risks that could occur after your thighplasty surgery are:

  • Blood Clots or Stroke
  • Infection
  • Pneumonia
  • Complications from anesthesia
  • Scars not healing properly or being slightly visible

Chances are you will experience a normal healing and be very happy with your thighplasty.

Cost of thigh lift procedures

Pricing varies depending on the extent of the treatment or surgery. You can see a list of the approximate prices of each procedure on our current fee schedule. Dr. Agullo charges a consultation fee of $100, which is applied to the cost of your treatment. Generally speaking, cosmetic plastic surgery is considered “elective” and is not covered by most insurance plans. The prices listed on our fee schedule represent the minimum cost of the procedures, including anesthesia and surgical facility fees, medical tests, garments, and recovery products. The cost of prescription medications, however, is not included. The exact price of each procedure can only be determined after a thorough consultation. All fees must be paid in full prior to the scheduled treatment.


Schedule a risk-free evaluation with Dr. Frank Agullo today.