people that have had the panniculectomy i have a few questions

on 7/14/13 1:01 pm
RNY on 02/13/12

how far up the stomach do they cut? is your belly button moved or do they even cut that high? the way my skin is my belly button droops down as well thats why im asking my bariatric surgeon also does the panniculectomy im 17 months post op he told me at my 18 month follow up we would schedule my skin removal but medicare/medicaid only covers the panniculectomy so im ready for the skin to be gone!! how hard is the recovery? how long was your hospital stay? ive lost over 200 pounds so i have tons of skin so im really nervous also if u have before/after pics of the panni removal can i see them thanks

Cicerogirl, The PhD

on 7/14/13 1:18 pm - OH

The panniculectomy incision is very low on the pelvis.  It starts below the midpoint of one hip, usually as far abck as the aurgeon can cut withut running into the operating table, and it is usually curved down so it is lower across the front of your body, and then curves back up to the same spot on the other hip. Some surgeons, though, don't curve it, they just cut straight across (which generally doesnt look nearly as nice).  Other than the very end points, the incision would be hidden by a typical (non-string type) swimsuit bottom. Whether or not your belly button is anywhere near the incision depends on how far down yours is from where the belly button SHOULD be. Some surgeons just leave the belly button where it is (but it ends up having a bit of a "hood" because the skin is pulled down), some surgeons remove the belly button and create a new one, and some people just tell the surgeon not to other creating anew belly button if theirs has to be removed.

I only stayed overnight (a 23-hour admission) after mine.  I personally found the covers to be pretty easy compared to most surgeries because there is no muscle cutting involved (but I am comparing it to open surgeries since most of the ones I have had have been open).  The only pain I and after the first couple of days was at the very endpoints on the hips because that area would get pulled when I would bend or twist.

i also had two drains put in because I had so much skin removed (I lost 190 pounds and much of it was in my belly).  If you have a lot of extra skin or residual fat on your moms, you should definitely ask your surgeon if he will do a mons lift along with the panniculectomy.  Some will, some will do it if you pay for the mons lift yourself, and some won't do it at all because it isn't just their fee involved that insurance won't cover, but the extra OR and anesthesiologist time, etc. (and it isn't worth the hassle of trying to make sure they don't bill insurance for something it won't cover or commit insurance fraud by not documenting that the mons lift was also done.  (My surgeon was one of the latter ones so I had to pay for it out of pocket 2 months later with another surgeon and he had to recut part of the panniculectomy incision.)

Sorry, but the only pics I have are of me completely nude and showing everything, so NO ONE else is ever going to see them!  Several people here who had much less skin to be removed have shared pictures, but their pictures don't represent my before OR after.


10 years out; 190 pounds lost, 165 pound loss maintained

You don't drown by falling in the water. You drown by staying there.