Thigh Lift Plastic Surgery (Thighplasty)

Reviewed by: Shahin Javaheri, MD

Thigh lift plastic surgery, technically called a “thighplasty”, addresses the inner, outer or entire thigh for a smoother, shapelier look. While the results can be outstanding, there are a couple of down sides…

Thigh Lift Procedure – Total, Vertical, Inner or Outer Thigh Lift

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The thigh lift procedure targets excess skin, dimples or cellulite around the thigh.

While the inner thigh lift is by far the most common, the vertical thigh lift, outer thigh lift and total thigh lift surgeries are also performed depending on the “problem area”. The inner thigh lift procedure is also performed as part of the more complete body lift.

During a thigh lift, extra skin and fat is removed from the thigh while remaining skin is pulled tight. To accomplish this, the surgeon makes incisions in the inner groin, lower buttocks or inner thigh area. If necessary for a symmetrical look, liposuction can be performed to remove any excess fat during the procedure.

In order to avoid future sagging from the heavy thigh skin, deep stitches will be placed to “anchor” the skin in place before the wound is closed.

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Thigh Lift Plastic Surgery Complications, Risks and Side Effects

The primary downside of thigh lift plastic surgery is the scarring that results, although experienced surgeons can strategically place the incisions to allow bathing suits or shorts to cover them.

Thigh lift surgery also carries with it the potential complications of any surgery, including temporary or permanent numbness, bleeding, blood clots, infection and wound problems.

Other negative issues that can result include an asymmetrical or unsatisfactory look. Finding an experienced plastic surgeon will certainly help, but be sure to talk with your surgeon beforehand about what to expect and ask to see before and after photos of several former patients.

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Thighplasty Recovery

Patients undergoing thigh lift surgery almost always stay overnight in the hospital. As you might expect, you will be sore following surgery and may experience bruising or swelling. These should subside after a few weeks, and your surgeon can prescribe pain medication in the mean time.

Following the procedure, the surgeon will place a compression garment over the pelvis and thigh area to aid healing and prevent blood clots from forming. To allow your incisions to heal properly, your surgeon will have you keep them dry and avoid showering for a few days following surgery.

Although not as common as it is after tummy tuck surgery, drainage tubes are sometimes used after thigh lift surgery to prevent the buildup of fluids.

You should be up and moving as soon as possible after surgery to reduce the risk of blood clots in your legs, but expect about a month to get back to your normal routine, including exercise.

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Thigh lift Plastic Surgery Cost

The cost of thigh lift surgery ranges from $1,900 to $8,000 or more depending on where the procedure is performed and how much of the thigh is operated on…

United States & Canada

Although surgeon experience and location can result in much higher or lower costs, thigh lift surgery in the United States and Canada typically runs between $5,000 and $7,000. Check with your surgeon beforehand to be sure, but this will often include the cost of all required follow-up visits.

If this is out of your price range, there are several thigh lift financing options that can make it more affordable, some of which charge little to no interest. You may even be able to get insurance to cover it. See our Is Easy Plastic Surgery Financing Available? page (coming soon) for more information.

To learn how to find the right surgeon, see 12 Steps to Find the Plastic Surgeon That's Right for You.

Outside the U.S. & Canada

Patients open to traveling for surgery may be able to find qualified thigh lift surgeons that charge $2,000 or less for treatment and follow-up care.

If medical travel for thigh lift surgery is something that you’re open to, click here to learn more about thigh lift surgery abroad.

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Your Thigh Lift Plastic Surgery Stories &
Before and After Photos

Did you have thigh lift surgery? Please share your experiences and (if you're open to it) your pre/post tummy tuck surgery photos!

Here are some ideas about what to include…

- Why did you decide to have surgery?
- Where did you have it?
- What was the total cost and how did you pay for it?
- How was your recovery?
- What’s been the reaction of friends, family and strangers?
- How long has it been since surgery, and how do you feel about it now?
- Before and after photos (optional but highly appreciated!)

Enter a title for your story

Thigh lift surgery stories & photo uploads from other visitors

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Not happy with my thigh lift surgery results! 
I decided to have thigh lift surgery because I have had significant weight loss and wanted to remove the excess skin from between my legs that caused me …

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[Last editorial review/modification of this page: 10/9/2013]

Disclaimer: The information contained in this web site is provided for general informational purposes only. It is not intended as nor should be relied upon as medical advice. Rather, it is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between a patient/site visitor and his/her existing physician(s). Before you use any of the information provided in the site, you should seek the advice of a qualified medical, dietary, fitness or other appropriate professional. Read More