Body Lift in Sydney

Body Lift Surgery With Sydney Plastic Surgeon Dr Ellis Choy

Lack of exercise plus unhealthy eating habits ultimately lead to weight gain. This scenario can continue for years or even decades before action is taken to shed the kilos. The health benefits of exercise and diet can then be appreciated, but the physical signs of significant weight loss can remain in the form of loose, dimpled skin or irregular body shape. In situations where your target weight has been achieved through diet and exercise, a body lift can help you reduce stubborn fat pockets and excess skin.

The elasticity of skin varies from person to person. Some people bounce back into shape seemingly at will, while others embark on extreme diets and vigorous exercise with little to show for their efforts. Body shape is also influenced by genetics, ageing, pregnancy, sun damage, illness… and the list goes on. A body lift is recommended for people who are dedicated to maintaining a reasonable level of fitness and who are determined to modify habits that cause weight gain.


According to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, 2 in 3 adults are overweight or obese. The prevalence of overweight and obesity among Australians is on the rise, leading to a higher risk of developing many chronic conditions.

Fortunately, many Australians are fighting back and losing weight through diet and exercise or bariatric surgery. People who lose small amounts of weight and have good skin quality and elasticity often find that their skin can ‘spring back’ and conform to their new shape.

Patients who undergo large changes in weight may have a different story. These patients feel significantly better, but may be left with large amounts of loose, excess skin that has lost its elastic potential. It can be frustrating to feel that you’ve done so much for your health and don’t have the aesthetic benefits to show for it.

A body lift is a comprehensive procedure designed to reshape and tighten the region from the midsection to the upper thighs. Generally speaking, a body lift can treat the following concerns in the abdomen, sides, back, buttocks, hips and upper thighs:

  • Loose or hanging skin
  • Skin folds that are causing discomfort or irritation
  • Overhanging skin that restricts mobility
  • Stubborn fat that is unresponsive to exercise and dieting

Dr Choy tailors each body lift surgery so that patients can attain personalised improvements in their abdominal profile and curves of their lower body.


Every year, thousands of patients undergo body lift surgery. This procedure is recommended for those who have achieved a healthy weight through diet and exercise or bariatric surgery, and who now want to address excess skin and fat in the midsection, relaxed abdominal wall muscles, and loose, wrinkled skin along the thighs and buttocks.

To be considered a candidate for body lift surgery, you should meet the following requirements:

  • Your weight has been stable for at least six months and you do not anticipate further weight loss
  • You are comfortable having significant scarring
  • You do not smoke or are willing to quit to reduce the risk of complications during and after surgery
  • You are in overall good health without medical conditions that could impede healing or increase the risks associated with the procedure
  • You have realistic expectations for the outcome of surgery

Please keep in mind that no body contouring procedure, including body lift surgery, is a weight-loss operation. Suitable candidates have already reached their goal weight and maintained it for at least half a year, but have excess skin that is stubborn no matter how much exercising and dieting is done. BMI must be within a safe range.

If you still want to lose a significant amount of weight, Dr Choy can make recommendations to help you reach your goals and qualify for body lift surgery.


This will be dependent on individual requirements for removal of fat and skin. For some people, a body lift will primarily aim to shed fat from the abdomen, however, the procedure can also tighten and shape the sides (love handles), back, thighs, hips and buttocks. In other words, a body lift can focus on isolated areas or provide more complete changes from head to toe.


Dr Ellis Choy is a Specialist Plastic Surgeon with experience treating all areas of the body. A private and confidential consultation with him will determine your skin tone, areas of concern and general health. He will discuss your goals, provide realistic expectations and assist by formulating a surgical plan aimed at your specific needs.

Dr Choy understands the concerns of prospective body lift patients, along with the desire for a safe and comfortable recovery. An important part of your consultation with Dr Choy is the disclosure of any factors that could impact negatively on your surgical outcome, such as smoking, medications and other drugs, the use of vitamins, and all previous surgeries.

Once he has a thorough understanding of your goals and health status, Dr Choy will discuss your surgical options and recommend a treatment plan. He will also discuss procedural details, the use of anaesthesia during your procedure, expected recovery and anticipated scar patterns. Dr Choy will make professional recommendations while using your personal goals and preferences to guide decision making.


Your personalised surgical procedure with Dr Choy is designed to reduce loose skin and improve your body contours, but there are limitations for every type of surgery. Maintaining your results is greatly assisted by exercise and appropriate lifestyle habits post-operation.

In cases where a large amount of skin is to be removed, there will be a number of incisions required. Dr Choy uses advanced surgical techniques to make the scars more discreet, even when you wear swimsuits or revealing clothing. 

The body lift procedure takes place in a hospital environment under general anaesthesia. Depending on the number of incisions and the amount of skin to be removed, the operation can take several hours. You will then be required to remain in hospital for a few days during the initial recovery period for monitoring purposes.

Severe complications are rare, but risks such as infection, bleeding, fluid accumulation, unfavorable scarring and poor wound healing are a possibility. Well-trained medical staff will be on hand to reduce these risks and assist with dressings, surgical tape, fluid drains and more.

As a patient of Dr Choy, you are not alone. He is accessible and available for advice and encouragement every step of the way.


Some initial improvements in body shape will immediately be noticeable. Your skin will heal over several weeks with diminished swelling and gradual lightening of scars. Surgical drains will be placed to remove excess fluid that accumulates within the incisions. You will wear a compression garment to control swelling and support your tissues.

It’s important to prepare for your return home by pre-ordering any supplies you require, arranging your house for comfort and convenience, and organising a lift home by a family member or friend. It’s a good idea if this person can stay with you for a few days during initial recovery to assist with any needs.

Comfort and recovery are the priority, and Dr Choy can prescribe suitable pain relief medication to ease any discomfort you may have. Return to work should be delayed for several weeks and any extended lifting, stretching or exercise should be avoided. Full healing of the incisions may take four weeks or longer. Plan to take two to three weeks off work, restrict normal activities for four to six weeks, and wait six to eight weeks before resuming exercise.


External appearances are usually the motivation for undergoing a body lift, but improved appearance is only part of the overall benefit. The removal of flab and fat can reduce strain on ligaments and joints caused by excess weight, which can assist with your renewed fitness program.

Acceptance of some visible scarring is necessary, although this should lighten over time. Natural ageing will also continue.

Results from a body lift can be long lasting when paired with a healthy lifestyle. The excess fat cells and skin that are removed will not grow back. However, if you gain weight in the future, the fat cells that remain can expand and your skin can stretch. It’s important to maintain a good diet and exercise program to sustain your results, as well as to lead the healthiest life possible.


If you have excess skin and folds in the mid and/or lower areas of your body, you may be a candidate for a body lift. 

As a Specialist Plastic Surgeon in Sydney, Dr Choy has dedicated his career to helping people of all ages, sizes, ethnicities and backgrounds with their plastic surgery needs. He and his team are proud to offer exceptional levels of care and experience and take great pride in helping patients achieve their goals. Contact us today for a consultation with Dr Choy and allow him to go over this procedure with you.

Making an Informed Decision

Undergoing plastic surgery is a significant decision that should be made only after careful consideration of all aspects involved, including the potential risks and complications.

General Risks and Complications

There are general risks and complications that apply to most plastic surgery procedures. These are discussed in detail on our Risks and Complications page.

Specific Risks and Complications

In addition to those that apply generally to plastic surgery, each individual procedure comes with its own specific risks and complications. For body lift procedures, these include:

  • Temporary or permanent changes in skin sensation
  • Temporary or permanent changes in skin colour
  • Uneven texture, dimpling or puckering of the skin
  • Excessive scarring
  • Asymmetrical appearance or shape in body contours
  • Disruption of blood supply to skin or underlying tissues

Next Steps

Request a consultation with Dr Choy for a detailed discussion of these considerations. Dr Choy will conduct a thorough risk assessment based on your individual factors and outline the measures that can be taken to minimise these risks. He and his team are here to support your decision-making process, providing all the information you need to make well-informed choices about your care.