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How do you get rid of the flabby skin after WL?

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AZULVIOLETA6's Photo SparkPoints: (52,210)
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10/12/13 5:10 P

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My dermatologist says that the only solution is surgery and that other treatments (laser, etc) do not work.

I've been pretty lucky in that even nearly 100 pounds down, I don't have much sag...just a bit at the tops of my legs. All of my remaining fat is in my belly, so if I ever get rid of that I might have some looseness there too.

I think that weight training helps, as does losing slowly, staying hydrated and getting enough healthy fats in your diet. Generally taking good care of your skin and staying moisturized can't hurt either. In the end though, it depend on your particular skin and you don't really know what you are going to end up with until you get there.

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ONLINEASLLOU's Photo SparkPoints: (44,460)
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10/12/13 12:13 P

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My doctor surprised me at my last visit by bring up the topic of surgery. I hadn't been planning on it ... but the fact that she seems to think it will be a reasonable thing for me to do after I reach the final weight I choose to maintain is making me reconsider it. At 58 years old, I never really thought about having a great body -- just wanted to lose to get healthy and yes, look better -- but to go as far as surgery was not something I was even considering.

I have lost a little over 50 pounds (hope to lose about 15 more eventually) and that's a lot for someone only 5'2' tall. I am probably carrying a couple of pounds of extra skin and facia that could be removed now. My breasts have gotten long and thin rather than being large and full (I know, TMI, but that's the reality of what we are all dealing with.) and I sag everywhere.

I am going to give surgery serious consideration -- but not do anything until I have lost a bit more.

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10/11/13 12:33 P

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As others have mentioned, lots of things figure into this. Age is one. The amount of weight lost is a huge factor. Getting or keeping body tone through exercise *while* you're losing is another.

For myself, losing a very large amount of weight at an older age, and with virtually no ability to exercise at all, my only recourse is going to be surgical. They call it a "total body lift." Insurance companies (naturally) want to disallow it as "cosmetic." It's NOT purely cosmetic, but you have to fight for the medically-necessary designation. That makes it extremely important for your doctor to document every instance of skin rashes, infections, or treatments for anything so related. Then s/he can present it as a medical condition. Without that classification, you're looking at an out-of-pocket expense of many thousands of dollars.

You're right, though. Without that, yes, you can regain health and a "normal" body weight. But it's never likely to be truly "normal." Not even the "normal" that a person of average weight would have by the typical aging process.

I think insurance companies should not be able to disallow this type of surgery for people who have lost significant amounts of weight. I don't mean someone who took off 25 or 50 pounds to look nice in a swimsuit. But I've lost about 150 pounds so far (not anywhere near goal weight yet), and there's no way that's "cosmetic." They sure like to press their preventive measures (smoking cessation, etc) to *their* benefit. Some even will discount premiums for those who lose weight - of course, because they expect to pay fewer claims based on obesity! Fine. Pay the other side of that coin, too. Help us regain some level of normalcy when we've done so.

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they've forgotten we're really just animals ...
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MEWHENRYSMAMA's Photo Posts: 5,630
10/11/13 10:10 A

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There are trade offs for everything! If it is a choice of sagging skin or a health body you feel better is worth it, even if it sags! Maybe you are not wild about the sagging and not looking great naked or in a swim suit...BUT, you will look great in clothes and you can walk in and buy what you want to wear! You can be and look go for it....

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10/11/13 9:56 A

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it's disheartening to think that after all of the work to lose the weight, you still won't want to wear a bathing suit

TRYINGHARD54's Photo Posts: 2,953
4/13/13 7:08 A

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it really sucks, we lose weight then cant get rid of the exrta skin dont matter how hard we exercise.. but still happy for the weight lose... :)


ARCHIMEDESII's Photo SparkPoints: (136,300)
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4/13/13 7:05 A

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There are a lot of different factors to consider.

As we age, our skin loses its elasticity. So, the younger you are, the better the chances are that some of your skin might bounce back. Genetics makes a difference. Look at the skin of members of both sides of your family. Did members of your family end up with sagging skin when they lost ? If you've got good genes, you may not end up with sagging skin. If you've got bad genes, you're going to have to accept the fact that you might end up with some sagging skin.

Depending on how much you need to lose or want to lose, the slower you take the weight off, the better the chances that some skin might pop back. The fact is, if you have 100+ pounds to lose, you're going to end up with some sagging skin as a result of the loss.

I lost around 50+ pounds. Some of my skin bounced back. Some didn't. If I want a perfectly tight stomach, I'm looking at a tummy tuck.

If you do a google search on the Biggest Loser contestants, some have posted about having excess skin removed surgically after the show. People who end up with a lot of excess skin after weight loss could have the surgery covered IF that excess skin is causing medical problems.

Right now, try not to worry too much. Let's see how your weight loss progresses. Having some sagging skin after weight loss is not detrimental to a person's health. I'm not to keen on having sagging skin, but I'm thrilled at what my body CAN do now that I've lost the weight. A little excess skin doesn't bother me much anymore. it's something I can live with.

However, if I did have so much extra skin that it was causing problems, I would consider having it surgically removed.

ONELITTLEPILL's Photo SparkPoints: (29,949)
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4/13/13 2:37 A

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I have lost about 70 pounds 3 separate times after each of my pregnancies. I work out very hard (Insanity, etc.), eat pretty decently, but I do have extra skin that will not go away unless I have the surgery. Someday, when I have the money... It is hard to swallow, because I know I have rock hard abs underneath that saggy, stretchmarked skin. Guess I should have listened to my mom when she said that I would regret gaining that much weight! My fault, I live with it.

This is for me...

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MAXINOVA's Photo SparkPoints: (26,993)
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4/13/13 1:03 A

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I think it depends on how old you are. The younger the better and more likely it will tighten up.

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CORTNEY-LEE's Photo SparkPoints: (50,429)
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4/13/13 12:49 A

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I have lost 126 pounds and they only way my skin is going away is to have it surgical removed. You may be lucky and it may rebound on its own. Only time will tell.

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HEALTHY4UNI's Photo SparkPoints: (12,381)
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4/12/13 11:56 P

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As we loose weight, I've noticed on myself as well as others (like on Biggest Loser) that the weight is gone but the skin doesn't deflate like a balloon but rather sags and is flabby! Does that just disappear over time or is there a process that can speed up it's tightening back up? It would seem that six pack abs or toned arms and legs are gone forever if there isn't a way to loose the extra flabby skin. I've heard of some people getting tummy tucks where they surgically remove skin but I hope that isn't the standard process. Can those that have lost large amounts of weigh and experienced this phenomenon weigh in of this topic and share what they experienced or learned?

Thanks in advance!

Edited by: HEALTHY4UNI at: 4/13/2013 (00:53)
The race to fitness is unending for when you reach your goals, it becomes a race to stay ahead of the temptations that seek to pull back to where you came from!

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