Bra line trunkplasty, also referred to as a bra line lift, is a surgical procedure that targets and eliminates rolls and bulges that form in the middle back due to excess skin and pockets of fat. Bra line lifts are commonly paired with upper or lower body lifts as part of a comprehensive approach to body rejuvenation following weight loss surgery but may also be completed as an individual procedure.
Patients undergoing a bra line lift can expect to see many improvements in their appearance, including:
• Elimination of back rolls around the bra and bikini line
• Removal of sagging skin caused by weight loss
• Slimming and contouring of torso circumference
• Creation of a smoother, tighter back
Both men and women struggle with excess back skin and fat because of weight loss. At Millennial Plastic Surgery, Dr. David Shokrian wants to help you achieve your weight loss goals with the latest in plastic surgery treatments. Undergoing weight loss, whether via surgery or by natural means, is a long and difficult process. When you have finally met your weight loss goals, let Dr. Shokrian help you finalize your journey with a bra line lift.
Bra line trunkplasty is completed under general anesthesia or local anesthesia with intravenous sedation. Dr. Shokrian marks the incision sites before surgery to create accurate measurements for use during the procedure. Female patients may be asked to bring a bikini top or revealing bra with them to serve as a template for the incisions, ensuring the horizontal scar is placed within the bra line. Male patients may not have the benefit of hiding their surgical scars while wearing a swimsuit, but Dr. Shokrian makes every effort to keep scarring minimal for all patients.
Once the patient has been sedated, and the area targeted for removal has been outlined, the incisions will be made. Patients with a moderate amount of excess back fat may receive liposuction before excess skin is removed to create a slimmer and tighter look. If possible, the liposuction incisions will be made within the excess skin targeted for removal, preventing additional scarring from the extra incisions.
After excess fat has been removed, the tissue inside of the pre-marked area is cut away and the edges of the skin are pulled together, eliminating bra line bulges and tightening the back. The tightening effect will smooth the skin between the upper back and the top of the buttocks, although it may not completely remove rolls and bulges present in the lower body. Supplementary procedures focusing on the lower body can correct additional issues located outside of the bra line. The skin is then sutured together to complete the surgery. The procedure lasts between one and two hours.
Recovery and Results
Bra line lifts are relatively mild surgical procedures and do not require an extensive recovery period, unlike other body lift surgeries. Patients will need to spend about two weeks recuperating and should plan on taking one full week off from work. Exercise and more strenuous activities can be gradually resumed about three to four weeks following surgery. Patients will need to avoid raising their arms overhead for a couple of weeks to prevent harming their incisions while they heal.
Common side effects of a bra line lift include swelling, bruising and mild to moderate discomfort. Ongoing pain and discomfort will be managed with prescription pain medication to provide a comfortable recovery. Most side effects will improve in the first few weeks, although swelling will take several months to completely dissipate. Any surgical drains or non-dissolvable sutures will be removed in seven to 10 days.
Results will be instantly visible, and patients can immediately begin enjoying a slimmer, more youthful appearance. Final results will take several months to develop as residual swelling is slowly eliminated by the body. Compression garments may be used during the first several weeks of recovery to accelerate the healing process and control excess swelling. The incision scar will take at least one year to mature fully.
Q&A with Dr.Shokrian
How long do results last?
Results following a bra line lift are lifelong. You can plan on enjoying your results for years to come, so long as you maintain a healthy body weight. While excess fat is removed during the procedure and will not come back, you may still gain new fat in the treated area due to an unhealthy diet and lack of exercise.
Am I a good candidate for a bra line lift?
Candidates for bra line lifts are patients with bulges and rolls caused by excess fat and skin laxity in the middle back. Many bra line lift patients have loose skin due to weight loss, but we can also address loose skin resulting from prolonged sun exposure and the effects of aging. The ideal candidates are patients who are non-smokers, are within 25 pounds of their goal body weight and have realistic expectations about what they can expect from the procedure. We will determine if you are a good candidate for the procedure after an in-person evaluation.
How soon after surgery can I shower?
You can shower 24 hours following your surgery. Patients need to refrain from submerging themselves in open water, including taking a bath or swimming in a pool, until their incisions have completely healed around the three- to four-week mark.
Can a bra line lift be combined with other procedures?
Absolutely. If you have excess skin located throughout your body following bariatric surgery or natural weight loss, then we can address other areas simultaneously. Procedures like a tummy tuck, a lower body lift, a breast lift and an arm lift can be combined with a bra line lift. Let us know if you are interested in targeting multiple areas of concern during your in-person consultation and we will develop a personalized treatment that is right for you.
What kind of scarring can I expect to have following a bra line lift?
The length of the incision is dependent on the amount of excess tissue targeted for removal. Generally, a bra line lift scar spans horizontally across the width of the back. For female patients, we always strive to place incisions within the bra line, allowing them to easily hide their scars while wearing most types of clothing. The scar tissue will improve and continue to fade for 12 to 16 months.