Exploring Panniculectomy: The Benefits, Risks & Alternatives

panniculectomy surgery

Considering panniculectomy for excess skin and fat in your abdominal area? Learn about its benefits, risks, and alternatives. 

Explore procedure details, potential complications, and non-surgical options to make an informed decision. Whether you’re considering surgery or just curious, read on.

What is panniculectomy?

Panniculectomy surgically removes excess skin and fat from the lower abdomen, often for those who’ve lost substantial weight. It aims to enhance quality of life by alleviating discomfort and skin irritation caused by excess tissue.

Candidate for pannus stomach surgery?

candidate-all-procedures newvvGood candidates for the surgery are individuals with excess skin and belly fat removal after significant weight loss. It’s crucial to understand that pannus stomach surgery isn’t for weight loss and isn’t suitable for those still overweight. 

Candidates should be in good health, with realistic expectations and a commitment to post-procedure health. Consulting a qualified plastic surgeon is essential to assess candidacy based on medical history, health status, and desired outcomes.

HayatMed Clinic, located in Istanbul/Turkey, is highly experienced in performing plastic surgery. Based on patients’ evaluations, we offer satisfactory results at an affordable cost. We offer a free consultation on WhatsApp.

Procedure for panniculectomy?

A complete panniculectomy typically lasts 2 to 5 hours, depending on the extent of the procedure. You’ll receive general anesthesia before surgery, ensuring you’re asleep throughout. 

The surgeon will then make an incision from hip to hip across your lower abdomen, adjusting its length based on the amount of skin and fat to remove. 

After making the incision, excess fat is removed, and the remaining skin is tightened and sutured closed. Occasionally, the surgeon may also reposition the belly button for a more natural appearance.

Benefits of Pannus stomach surgery?

Benefits of panniculectomy:

  1. Boosted self-confidence: Removing excess skin and fat improves appearance and self-esteem.
  2. Enhanced mobility: By eliminating excess tissue, movement becomes easier, allowing for more physical activities.
  3. Reduced infection risk: Removing problematic skin folds decreases moisture and bacteria buildup, lowering infection risks.

Risks of panniculectomy?

risks-all-posts besddDespite its benefits, the surgery carries potential risks:

  1. Bleeding: Like any surgery, bleeding may occur during or after the procedure, sometimes requiring further intervention.
  2. Infection: Despite precautions, there’s a risk of infection post-surgery, especially for those with weakened immune systems.
  3. Scarring: Although efforts are made to minimize scarring, visible scars may still occur, which can be a concern for some individuals.
  4. Anesthesia complications: Complications related to anesthesia, such as allergic reactions or respiratory issues, are possible, albeit rare, and should be considered before undergoing the surgery.

Panniculectomy recovery?

After surgery, you’ll move to a recovery room and be closely monitored as you wake from anesthesia. Expect soreness, swelling, and discomfort during the first week, managed with prescribed pain medication.

Healing progresses over several weeks, with swelling decreasing and the abdomen improving. It can take around 3 months for swelling to subside and wounds to heal and up to 2 years to see the final results. Follow your surgeon’s instructions diligently for a smooth recovery.

Avoid strenuous activity for at least six weeks, including heavy lifting and high-impact exercises. You may need to wear a compression garment.

Top Surgeons

Plastic surgeons are members of the International Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ISAPS). They have years of surgical experience.

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Our hospital is rated A- by the Turkish Ministry of Health and accredited by JCI, representing gold standards in hygiene and quality

Affordable Prices

HayatMed always strives to provide the best services at affordable prices; HayatMed provides all-inclusive packages from operation to hotels and transportation at the best prices.

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Our packages cover medical fees, hospital stays, airport transfers, and personal host services for a seamless experience.

Alternatives to pannus stomach surgery?

For those seeking body contouring, panniculectomy is a common choice for excess abdominal skin and fat.

However, alternatives offer similar results without surgery:

  1. Liposuction: Liposuction in Turkey involves suctioning out fat with a thin tube. It’s minimally invasive and done under local anesthesia, with most patients returning to work quickly.
  2. ThermiTight uses radiofrequency energy to tighten skin and heat fat cells. The results are long-lasting, with improvement visible in weeks.
  3. CoolSculpting: Non-invasive, uses cooling to destroy fat cells. Painless with no downtime, results appearing gradually over three months.
  4. EmSculpt: Stimulates muscle contractions and fat burning with electromagnetic energy. Pain-free with no downtime, with noticeable improvement in weeks.
  5. Renuvion: Tightens skin and reduces fat using radiofrequency energy and helium gas. Minimal downtime and lasting results are seen in weeks.

How much does panniculectomy cost?

How much does panniculectomy cost gggIn the United States, the cost of excess skin removal surgery ranges from $8,000 to $15,000, covering the surgeon, anesthesia, and facility fees but not post-operative care or medication.

Costs vary by location, with major cities typically charging more than rural areas.

In Turkey, known for medical tourism, panniculectomy costs $3,000 to $6,000 due to lower overhead and living expenses.

Despite lower costs, research is crucial to select a reputable surgeon and facility in Turkey, factoring in travel expenses like airfare and accommodation.

Related: J-Plasma Cost

Panniculectomy vs tummy tuck?

Two popular body contouring surgeries are panniculectomy and Tummy Tuck Istanbul, each with distinct purposes and processes.

Pannus stomach surgery targets excess skin and fat in the lower abdomen, often for weight loss patients, while Tummy Tuck Istanbul focuses on cosmetic enhancement.

The surgery is more extensive, removing excess tissue, whereas Tummy Tuck Istanbul involves skin and fat removal along with muscle tightening.

Recovery from the surgery is longer and more invasive, requiring weeks off work, while Tummy Tuck Istanbul usually has a shorter recovery period.

Impact of panniculectomy on health?

Panniculectomy offers more than just cosmetic improvements; it can significantly enhance overall health and well-being. Excess abdominal skin and fat can lead to issues like irritation and infections, which the surgery can alleviate.

Beyond physical benefits, the surgery can boost mental health by increasing confidence and comfort in one’s body, leading to improved self-esteem.

However, it’s crucial to understand that pannus stomach surgery isn’t a cure-all. Patients must maintain a healthy lifestyle, including diet and exercise, to sustain weight loss and prevent future health issues.

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The success rate of pannus stomach surgery?

Success-Rate panniculectomyResearch indicates a 22.3% post-operative complication rate for the procedure, meaning there’s a risk of issues afterward, such as bleeding, infection, and scarring. However, most patients don’t experience complications.

Success depends on factors like overall health, surgeon skill, and adherence to post-operative care. Following instructions and maintaining a healthy lifestyle increase the likelihood of success.

Success is measured by improved physical and emotional well-being. Patients report better mobility, less pain, and increased self-confidence post-procedure. Despite the complication rate, overall success is evident.

Longevity of panniculectomy results?

The results of a panniculectomy are technically permanent since the excess skin and fat are removed and won’t grow back. However, factors like weight gain, pregnancy, and aging can influence results.

Maintaining a healthy weight and lifestyle post-surgery helps preserve results, while weight gain may lead to the recurrence of excess skin and fat. Pregnancy can also impact results by stretching the skin and abdominal muscles.

Thus, while pannus stomach surgery results are permanent in theory, various factors can influence them. Patients should be aware of these factors and take measures to sustain their results.

How do you find the best surgeon for panniculectomy?

Tips for finding a qualified surgeon for panniculectomy:

  1. Ask your primary care physician or search online for certified local surgeons in plastic or general surgery.
  2. Verify credentials by checking the surgeon’s valid license, education, and training, and search for any past malpractice claims.
  3. Review patient feedback on the surgeon’s website and platforms like Yelp, focusing on comments about bedside manner and satisfaction with results.
  4. Schedule meetings with potential surgeons to discuss your medical history and procedure details. Ask questions to understand their approach.
  5. Evaluate the surgeon’s experience with panniculectomies, including success rates and how they handle complications.
  6. Consider financial aspects such as insurance coverage, fees, and financing options if needed.

Stages of panniculectomy

Stages of panniculectomy 33Panniculectomy involves these stages:

  1. Consultation: Discuss goals and medical history with a plastic surgeon.
  2. Pre-op evaluation: Assess overall health and suitability for surgery.
  3. Surgical planning: Determine tissue removal and approach.
  4. Anesthesia: Administer before the procedure.
  5. Incision: Make a precise cut to remove excess skin and fat.
  6. Tissue removal: Safely excise excess tissue.
  7. Muscle repair (if needed): Tighten abdominal muscles.
  8. Closure: Carefully stitch or staple the incision.
  9. Post-op care: Monitor recovery and provide instructions.
  10. Follow-up: Schedule regular appointments for progress tracking.

Panniculectomy scar

After a panniculectomy, the scar usually aligns with the incision where excess skin and fat are taken out. The scar’s size and look depend on healing, surgical technique, and care afterward. Good wound care and time often lead to less visible scars as they fade.


Panniculectomy enhances the lower abdomen’s appearance and function for weight loss patients by removing excess skin and fat. 

Recovery may involve soreness and swelling, but most patients resume normal activities within weeks.

Author picture

This article was Medically reviewed by Dr. Ali Cem OKTAY

Panniculectomy FAQs

If you have extra skin and tissue hanging over your abdomen, often after losing a lot of weight or having abdominal surgery, you may qualify.

For those with discomfort, hygiene problems, or emotional distress due to excess abdominal skin and tissue, a panniculectomy could be worthwhile. But first, talk to a qualified surgeon about your specific concerns and goals.

Yes, as long as an experienced surgeon performs it. Like any surgery, there are risks, such as infection and bleeding. Your surgeon will discuss these risks and take steps to reduce them.

Usually, wait at least one to two weeks after the surgery or until you’re off prescription pain meds and feel comfortable driving safely. Always follow your surgeon’s instructions, as recovery times vary.

While a panniculectomy targets extra skin and tissue in the lower abdomen, it might also involve some fat removal. However, unlike liposuction, it is not primarily for fat removal.

About the author

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Binsy George

Binsy brings over 13 years of expertise to the HayatMed Clinic Blog. With a passion for healthcare communication, she has crafted insightful articles that demystify complex medical topics, empowering readers to make informed decisions about their well-being.
Her wealth of experience ensures that each blog post is a reliable source of knowledge, fostering a deeper understanding of health and medical advancements.

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