360 degree Body Lift Surgery

Philadelphia body lift procedure: The final step in your weight loss journey

Many men and women who have successfully lost a significant amount of weight find that they have excess skin that inhibits their ability to feel the joy and confidence they have earned. This excess skin, or pannus, can be removed to enable clothing to fit better and simultaneously increase your confidence. A circumferential body lift procedure—also called “belt lipectomy,” “360 tummy tuck” or “panniculectomy”—is performed to remove excess skin from the front and back of the torso, as well as the upper legs. Board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Brannon Claytor specializes in this post-massive weight loss plastic surgery here in Bryn Mawr, PA, and has helped numerous patients enjoy their weight loss and feel comfortable in their bodies again.

“Doctor Claytor is absolutely amazing. I can’t say enough wonderful things about him and his entire team! I wanted my belt lipectomy for years but was terrified to make the leap. When I finally got enough courage and started the process of looking for the right doctor I had various consults with plastic surgeons. I was confident in my decision in Dr. Claytor for my surgery. Doctor Claytor comforted me through the entire process. Not only did he do an amazing job on my surgery he made the recovery process so much better by making him self available to all my needs. His post op care demonstrates how important he finds his patients. I am now almost 6 months out and am in awe of the results. He truly gave me my confidence back.”

—Real BODY LIFT patient review, NOVEMBER 2023

What are the benefits of body lift after weight loss?

If you have lost a significant amount of weight, you have accomplished a very difficult task. But if you are left with excess skin that conceals your progress, then you may find that the weight loss is not as rewarding as you had hoped. For many patients, excess skin also causes hygiene issues. It is no wonder that body lift carries at 97% “Worth It” rating from patient feedback posted on RealSelf. The benefits of post-weight loss body contouring may include:

  • Freedom from skin irritation or hygiene issues
  • Reduced likelihood of gaining the weight back in the future
  • More comfort while working out or being active
  • Easier time finding clothes that fit comfortable

Dr. R. Brannon Claytor

Dr. Claytor is board certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery and holds over 15 years of experience as a cosmetic plastic surgeon. An innovator and teacher in the field of plastic surgery, he uses advanced techniques like the drain-free tummy tuck and deep plane facelift to streamline recovery and provide natural-looking, durable results.

Portrait of Dr. Claytor smiling

What is involved in a body lift?

During the procedure, excess skin and adipose tissue are removed. Dr. Claytor will also tighten the abdominal muscles to restore a flatter abdomen.

Body lift incisions

It’s important to understand where your incisions will be placed for a body lift. Because this procedure removes excess skin along the abdomen, sides, buttocks, and upper legs, your scar will be located along the base of your abdomen and extend around the circumference of your hips and buttocks/lower back. This scar is easily concealed beneath bathing suits and other clothing, and we will guide you after surgery on the proper incision and scar care methods needed to see your scar fade successfully with time. If needed, we can perform microneedling here at Claytor Noone Plastic Surgery to help diminish the appearance of the scar.

Drain-free tummy tuck as part of your body lift

Unlike most surgeons, Dr. Claytor does not use post-surgical drains for his 360-degree tummy tuck; he is able to perform a drainless tummy tuck, which requires a unique surgical technique that leaves a thin layer of scarpas fascia (connective tissue) intact. While drains are typically placed to remove the fluid that naturally accumulates during the healing process, Dr. Claytor’s drainless technique allows the body to provide its own, natural lymphatic drainage. This effectively eliminates the need for cumbersome drains, thus making your recovery more comfortable.

A well-known expert in this drain-free tummy tuck technique, Dr. Claytor teaches the advanced course on scarpas-sparing abdominoplasty at national meetings of The Aesthetic Society. His independent clinical studies demonstrate that the fluid collection rate following surgery is actually reduced when compared with that of those patients who have drains placed at their incision sites during surgery. Additionally, you will benefit from less cautery (or surgical trauma to the body) and more discontinuous undermining, which allows for improved blood supply to your surgical site and less traumatic tissue disruption. No-drain tummy tucks are considered to be safe, and they even encourage a faster recovery period.

Before & After Gallery

View real photos of Dr. Claytor’s total body lift patients.


*Individual results may vary

Combining body lifts with complementary procedures

As you discuss your personal goals with Dr. Claytor, you may learn that you are a candidate for additional procedures, as well. Since body lifts solely tighten and tone the abdomen, back, buttocks, hips, and thighs, it is common to combine a body lift with breast lift, arm lift, buttock lift, or (inner) thigh lift to fully restore your body proportions.

Recovery after a body lift

You will wear compression garments for a few weeks after your body lift to facilitate faster healing. After surgery, you will be encouraged to walk as soon as you are able to, although strenuous activities must be limited for about a month. Results are visible immediately, but become more refined as swelling goes down. Throughout your recovery process, Dr. Claytor will be available to answer any of your questions or examine you should concerns arise.

Body lift scars

Body lift surgery, like virtually all surgical procedures, does result in some scarring. The extent and location of your body lift scars will depend on the specific areas being lifted. With an arm lift, you can expect a scar running from your armpit to your elbow, typically on the inside of your arm. In a lower body lift, incisions often extend around the circumference of your body, like a belt. Dr. Claytor takes special care to ensure that your incisions are placed in discreet locations, so any resulting scarring will be easy to conceal.

Scars will appear most pronounced at 2-3 months post-op, but will gradually start to fade. By 6 months, you’ll likely see a significant improvement, and by a year, the scars should be much less noticeable. It may take up to 2 years for your scars to fully mature and fade. Dr. Claytor may suggest a treatment plan consisting of medical-grade skincare or microneedling treatments for surgical scars to aid and expedite your healing process.

Who is an ideal candidate for a body lift?

Candidates for body lifts typically have loose (inelastic) skin on many or most areas of the body as a result of age, childbearing, or significant weight loss due to diet, exercise, or bariatric surgery. The ideal patient will have reached their weight goal and will have achieved a stable weight for 3-6 months. It is also important that patients refrain from smoking, as this can inhibit healing. During the initial consultation, we carefully screen all patients’ medical histories for any underlying conditions that may affect a healthy recovery. While many plastic surgeons turn away surgeons solely based on their BMI, Dr. Claytor evaluates patients on a case-by-case basis, as BMI is not a clear indicator of whether you are not (or are) a good candidate for plastic surgery.

  • Comprehensive Transformation: 360-degree body lift surgery provides a complete body contouring solution by addressing excess skin and fat around the abdomen, flanks, buttocks, and lower back, resulting in a dramatically improved overall appearance.
  • Enhanced Body Proportions: This procedure creates a more harmonious and balanced physique by removing excess tissue, giving patients a slimmer waistline, firmer buttocks, and improved body proportions.
  • Elimination of Sagging Skin: It effectively eliminates loose and sagging skin, particularly after significant weight loss or pregnancy, leading to a tighter and more youthful skin appearance.
  • Clothing Fit: Clothes fit better and more comfortably after a 360-degree body lift, allowing patients to enjoy a wider range of wardrobe options without the hindrance of excess skin or fat.
  • Reduced Discomfort: By removing excess skin and fat, this surgery can alleviate discomfort and chafing caused by skin folds, enhancing physical comfort and quality of life.

Bariatric Surgery: Weight loss surgery, often a precursor to body lift procedures for individuals who have undergone significant weight loss.

Compression Garment: A tight-fitting garment worn after surgery to minimize swelling and support healing tissues.

Dog Ears: Small folds or puckers of excess skin at the ends of surgical incisions, often corrected during a body lift procedure.

Drainless Body Lift: A technique where the surgeon avoids using surgical drains, instead opting for other methods to reduce fluid buildup post-surgery.

Fleur-de-Lis Abdominoplasty: A variation of traditional abdominoplasty that includes a vertical incision to remove additional skin in the upper abdomen, often used during a body lift.

Hematoma: A collection of blood outside of blood vessels which may occur after surgery.

Inferior Body Lift: A lower body lift technique focusing on the abdomen, thighs, and buttocks.

Liposuction: The surgical removal of fat deposits, often used in conjunction with body lift procedures to refine the body’s contour.

Monsplasty: The surgical alteration of the mons pubis, often included in lower body lift procedures for aesthetic or comfort reasons.

Panniculectomy: Surgical removal of the pannus or overhanging skin and fat, typically in the abdominal area.

Sutures: Stitches used to hold tissues together during the healing process post-surgery.

Swelling: A common post-operative symptom characterized by an increase in the size or volume of the treated area, often due to fluid retention or inflammation.

Seroma: A buildup of serous fluid in the area where tissue has been removed during surgery.

Tissue Expander: A device used to stretch skin and tissue, often employed before body lift procedures to prepare the area for surgery.

Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty): A surgical procedure to remove excess skin and fat from the abdomen, often part of a body lift.

VASER Liposuction: A type of liposuction that uses ultrasound waves to break down fat cells before removal, often used in body contouring surgeries.

Real patient story: body lift surgery

Below, one of Dr. Claytor’s patients shares her experience undergoing body lift surgery followed by arm lift (brachioplasty) and thigh lift (thighplasty) after losing 185 pounds:

“After losing 185lbs I was left with massive amounts of lose skin. After reading the reviews and seeing the before and after gallery I knew Dr. Claytor was a perfect fit. I was absolutely blown away by Dr. Claytor, and staff (especially Alicia and Debbie). I went ahead and had a lower body lift in the fall followed by a brachioplasty in January and was so ecstatic with the results that I decided to have a thighplasty to complete my skin removal transformation. Never in my 42 years have I been able to wear shorts above my knee until now! My results were so stellar I went out and bought “short” shorts in every color. My confidence is higher than it has ever been in my whole life and I owe that all to Dr. Claytor. If you are considering cosmetic surgery I can’t recommend this doctor and staff more! The absolute best of the best!”

—Real patient of Dr. Claytor, June 2022

Schedule your post-weight loss plastic surgery consultation with Philadelphia plastic surgeon Dr. Claytor

Claytor Noone Plastic Surgery is here to serve patients from Philadelphia, Bryn Mawr, Main Line, and the surrounding areas. Philadelphia board certified plastic surgeon Dr. R. Brannon Claytor has over 15 years of experience offering cosmetic plastic surgery procedures. A member of The Aesthetic Society’s Board of Trustees, the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS), and a Fellow of the American College of Surgeons (FACS), Dr. Claytor is dedicated to continuously advancing his surgical techniques and teaching his methods to colleagues at national meetings. In addition to his surgical work, Dr. Claytor the Chief of Plastic Surgery for Main Line Health Systems, and is a Clinical Associate Professor at Lankenau Institute of Medical Research.

To learn if a body lift is right for you, or to get answers to your questions, please call our Bryn Mawr office at (610) 527-4833 or contact us online to schedule a personal consultation with Dr. Claytor. We look forward to helping you reach your goals!

References »

Soldin M, Mughal M, Al-Hadithy N; Department of Health; British association of Plastic, Reconstructive and Aesthetic Surgeons; Royal College of Surgeons England. National commissioning guidelines: body contouring surgery after massive weight loss. Journal of Plastic, Reconstructive & Aesthetic Surgery. 2014 Aug;67(8):1076-81. doi: 10.1016/j.bjps.2014.04.031. Epub 2014 May 10. 

Aldaqal SM, Makhdoum AM, Turki AM, Awan BA, Samargandi OA, Jamjom H. Post-bariatric surgery satisfaction and body-contouring consideration after massive weight loss. North American Journal of Medicine and Science. 2013 Apr;5(4):301-5. doi: 10.4103/1947-2714.110442. 


Herman CK, Hoschander AS, Wong A. Post-Bariatric Body Contouring. Aesthetic Surgery Journal. 2015 Aug;35(6):672-87. doi: 10.1093/asj/sjv008. Epub 2015 Apr 22. 

ElAbd R, Samargandi OA, AlGhanim K, Alhamad S, Almazeedi S, Williams J, AlSabah S, AlYouha S. Body Contouring Surgery Improves Weight Loss after Bariatric Surgery: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis. Aesthetic Plastic Surgery. 2021 Jun;45(3):1064-1075. doi: 10.1007/s00266-020-02016-2. Epub 2020 Oct 23.

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Portrait of Dr. Claytor smiling

Medically reviewed by Dr. R. Brannon Claytor — Updated on Feb 20, 2024