All About Body Contouring: Get to Know Your Options

People want to feel good about themselves and the way they look, but sometimes diet and exercise aren’t enough. You can’t stop time or getting older, and there are probably things that genetics gave you that you may not like. But if you want to change or improve certain body parts, body contouring is the answer. Let’s explore all of your options.

At Pousti Plastic Surgery in San Diego, we offer many options, from surgical procedures to minimally invasive treatments. Whatever you choose, the goal is the same, and that’s to look great. Tom Pousti, MD, FACS has over 20 years of experience with reconstructive and cosmetic plastic surgery. He’ll do a thorough consultation and learn your goals and expectations, and then advise you on the best choices for your personal needs and health situation. 

What body contouring can fix

Keep in mind that body contouring is not for weight loss. Some people may want or need body contouring treatments after losing a significant amount of weight, in order to fix excess skin and other issues. It’s definitely designed to address aesthetic and cosmetic concerns. Some of the body parts that can be fixed and made to look better are: 

Body contouring: Surgical options

These surgical procedures will require downtime and recovery, and especially with a tummy tuck, you’ll need to be in good health. We discuss all the pros and cons of each option, so you’ll be fully clear as to what’s involved. Let Pousti Plastic Surgery help you get to know your options.

Tummy Tuck

Also known by the medical term abdominoplasty, this is a major surgery that removes excess skin and fat, and then tightens the muscles in your abdomen. You’ll be sedated with anesthesia, recovery can take up to a month, and you won’t be able to do strenuous activity for six weeks. 

We’ll send you home with detailed instructions on pain management and how to take care of yourself after the surgery, though it’s highly advised to have help. The results of a tummy tuck are usually successful and major complications are rare, though you could be bruised and sore for weeks or months.  


This treatment may also involve general anesthesia, and permanently removes fat by literally sucking it out through a cannula (tube) that’s inserted under the skin of your problem areas. Over 300,000 people in the United States have this procedure done each year, which makes liposuction the most common cosmetic surgery. 

Bruising and swelling can take a month to heal, though relief of full inflammation may take six months, and risks can include infection and bleeding. 

Liposuction can correct:

Arm and thigh lift

These are both major surgeries that can take two to four hours to perform, and involve making incisions and then removing the excess fat and skin. The results are generally very successful. With an arm lift, you’ll have swelling for the first two weeks, and have to wear protective wraps for about six weeks. One thing to note is that the scars will diminish, but may not fully vanish. 

With a thigh lift, liposuction might also be part of this procedure. You’ll be back to normal activities within four to six weeks. But keep in mind with both procedures, full healing can take up to a year.

Body contouring: Non-surgical options

CoolSculpting® is a non-surgical treatment that’s done right in our offices and takes only 35-60 minutes. You may need a few procedures, depending on the area we’re working on. CoolScuplting freezes and crystallizes your unwanted fat cells so they die, and they're eliminated naturally by your body. It’s a great alternative to liposuction.

The initial results are noticeable right after the first treatment, but it will take two months to see the full results. Though side effects can include bruising, irritation, and swelling, there's no downtime and you can return to normal activities the day of the procedure.

Now that you know your options for different body contouring treatments, you need to set up a consultation with Dr. Pousti. Our goal is to make sure you have that self-esteem and confidence. Call us or use the Book Online tool here

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