Congratulations on your weight loss. Sometimes, individuals who have lost a substantial amount of weight are disappointed to discover that they are not satisfied with their new contour. This is because major weight fluctuations — not to mention the natural aging process — can cause the skin to lose its elasticity, preventing it from shrinking back to its original position once this excess weight is lost and instead may result in sagging skin.


Poor skin elasticity can result in loose skin that can form multiple rolls throughout the body. For some patients, these skin rolls can cause problems with hygiene and they can also be a source of significant embarrassment. In addition to loose skin, stubborn deposits of localized fat can remain even after significant weight loss, compounding the problem. Loose skin and fat pockets can develop almost anywhere on the body. This can commonly happen on the upper and lower back.

If this sounds familiar, and you avoid wearing warm-weather clothing or bathing suits even in sweltering temperatures because you feel self-conscious about the loose excess skin and fat throughout your upper and lower back, you may want to consider having upper body lift cosmetic surgery with Joseph Michaels, MD, FACS. Dr. Michaels is a fellowship-trained body lift surgeon who compassionately treats his post-weight loss plastic surgery patients like members of his family, in his Rockville and Fairfax offices.

What an Upper Body Lift Treats

When excess skin and fat develops on the back, it often forms multiple rolls, resulting in what is called an “inverted-V” deformity. With the inverted-V deformity, the rolls of loose skin and stubborn fat extend from the center of the back, outward and downward. Not only can suffering from the inverted-V deformity make individuals feel self-conscious about their appearance, it can also cause physical discomfort. For instance, women suffering from this condition may feel uncomfortable when wearing a bra, as the bra will make these rolls appear more prominent.

The main objective with upper body lift surgery is to contour the upper and lower back by removing the excess tissue and correcting the inverted-V deformity. This procedure has a very high satisfaction rate and can help after-weight loss patients feel more confident and more comfortable.

Other Procedures That Can Be Included in Upper Body Lift

For Washington D.C., Maryland and Northern Virginia upper body lift patients, Dr. Michaels can customize the post-weight loss plastic surgery procedure to meet the needs of each patient. Because many post-weight loss patients have more than one area that they would like to correct, it is very common for Dr. Michaels to combine another body contouring procedure with an upper body lift. Other procedures that are commonly combined with an upper body lift include arm lift, breast lift or male breast reshaping (gynecomastia treatment). This option will be discussed with you during your consultation.

Before and After Photos

The Procedure

The details of the upper body lift procedure vary by patient and will depend on your specific anatomical needs and aesthetic objectives. Dr. Michaels is highly skilled in multiple techniques to optimize your contour. During your consultation, the Maryland body lift surgeon carefully listens to your concerns and develops a customized treatment plan tailored to address your needs and aesthetic goals.


Upper body lift surgery is most commonly performed as an outpatient procedure performed under general anesthesia. For patients undergoing multiple procedures, an overnight stay may be required. The length of the overall procedure depends on its complexity and on how many areas are being corrected.

The general approach to body contouring (body lift) procedures is similar, regardless of which area of the body is being treated. If there are excess fat deposits within the treatment area, liposuction is often required to optimize the contour. Dr. Michaels will commonly perform this step first. Next, an incision is made in the areas where Dr. Michaels plans to excise excess skin. The Rockville / Fairfax post-weight loss plastic surgery specialist will then estimate the amount of skin to be removed by re-draping the remaining skin. The remaining tissue is closed with dissolvable stitches, and a sterile dressing is placed over the treated area. The body lift surgeon may also place a compression garment over the treated area to help minimize swelling and to provide additional support while the tissues heal.

Finally Get the Contoured Figure You Desire

Again, congratulations on losing your excess weight! If you are now bothered by excess skin as a result of weight loss achievement, it is time to reach out to Dr. Michaels. He is a board-certified plastic surgeon and leading provider of body contouring procedures after significant weight loss. He is one of a few plastic surgeons to have completed a fellowship dedicated to this specialized field of plastic surgery.

Quick Facts


2-3 hours




Usually outpatient, may require overnight stay if combined with other procedures

Side effects

Temporary swelling, bruising, tightness and some pain


Pain, bleeding, infection, rare damage to nerves, asymmetry, incomplete improvement, recurrent laxity


1 weeks back at work, 1 week light exercise, 2 weeks more strenuous activity, 8-12 weeks for swelling to resolve

Duration of results

Proper diet and exercise can prolong results


To arrange your personal consultation with the post-weight loss surgeon, contact Michaels Aesthetic and Reconstructive Plastic Surgery by calling 301-468-5991 or 703-957-8610, or by clicking here.