Body Contouring Options: Surgical and Nonsurgical

Body contouring procedures aim to sculpt the body, reducing loose and sagging skin after dramatic weight changes. Aging, pregnancy, and drastic weight loss can lead to sagging features and excess skin. The changes are evident in the face, breasts, arms, stomach, thighs, and other body parts. Fortunately, there are cosmetic treatments that can help correct these issues.


Body Contouring Options


Body contouring treatments remove excess skin and tighten the body to achieve the desired contour. Patients can choose to get surgical or nonsurgical contouring. The options differ in complexity, technique, side effects, and recovery time.


When choosing the best treatment, consider the treatment area and severity of the laxity or skin sagging. Your age and your budget are essential factors when making the decision. A cosmetic surgeon will help you determine the best option for your situation.


Surgical Body Contouring


Following significant weight loss, the skin usually cannot conform to the new contours. Reduced elasticity, especially in aging skin, results in sagging and excess skin. In this situation, surgical contouring is the best option.


Surgically removing the excess skin helps tighten and enhance the contours. Removing the excess skin and repositioning the remaining skin helps create a firmer appearance. Surgical procedures provide more substantial results.


Surgical Body Contouring Options


Various surgical options help contour the body. The surgical procedures include:


  • Breast lift

  • Tummy tuck

  • Arm lift

  • Upper body lift

  • Lower body lift

  • Thigh lift

Apart from removing the excess skin, the surgeon can help rid stubborn body fat. It helps enhance the contouring effects.


Nonsurgical Body Contouring


Nonsurgical body contouring helps eliminate stubborn fat and tighten the skin without surgery. The noninvasive procedures use various energy sources to liquefy and remove targeted fat. Popular contouring options use laser energy and ultrasound heat. They also use freezing temperatures and radiofrequency to remove fat cells.


Tools are applied over the skin during the procedures, targeting the outer and inner skin layers. The body then eliminates the treated fat naturally through the filtration system. The treatments also stimulate elastin and collagen production.


Nonsurgical Options


Popular nonsurgical body contouring options include:


  • Cryolipolysis involves the use of controlled cooling. Freezing temperatures target and destroy stubborn fat cells. An example of this is CoolSculpting®.

  • Laser lipolysis involves using laser energy and controlled heat to target fat cells. An example is Zerona®.

  • Radiofrequency lipolysis uses ultrasound technology and controlled heat to remove fat. truSculpt® is a popular option.

  • Injection lipolysis involves the use of injectable deoxycholic acid to remove fat cells. Kybella injections are a popular option.


When you choose a nonsurgical procedure such as CoolSculpting, you can leave the clinic and return to your normal duties immediately. The noninvasive procedures do not require recovery time.


People who get body contouring end up with well-shaped, more defined body parts. After the procedure, you can expect a leaner, younger-looking appearance and smoother skin. Results of surgical contouring are usually immediate. However, it can take a while to notice the difference with nonsurgical contouring. There are more risks associated with surgical contouring.

For more on body contouring options, call Aron Kressel, MD at 212-772-6968 to reach our office on Park Avenue, ​​​​​​​New York. 

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