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Panniculectomy is an abdominal contouring surgical procedure that eliminates hanging abdominal skin and fat (pannus), sometimes referred to as an apron that hangs down over the genital area or thighs. Patients typically undergo this procedure after an extreme weight loss or pregnancy, which usually leaves a sizeable amount of sagging excess skin. Woodglen Aesthetics offers panniculectomy surgical procedure, which can be performed individually or combined with other body contouring procedures like abdominoplasty. Some insurances will pay for this procedure.


Panniculectomy is typically performed under general anesthesia. Excess fat and skin located in the lower abdomen is removed through incisions created vertically from the lower sternum to the pubic bone, and horizontally curved from one side of the hip to the other. After the removal of the hanging fat and skin, the remaining skin will then be pulled and stitched tightly together. The procedure may take anywhere from 3-5 hours to complete. Depending on the condition, patients should expect hospital stay that could last anywhere between 1-7 days,


The length of the recovery period could vary from patient to patient. It is normal to experience swelling, bruising, and pain following the panniculectomy, but it should subside within about a week. Most panniculectomy patients spend at least one night in the hospital for recovery. It can take several months for the area to heal completely. Patients are also required to wear a support or compression garment for the duration of the recovery period. It is recommended to refrain from any strenuous activities for at least two weeks. Patients are provided ample instructions and proper prescription medications to reduce the risks of any complications and to make the recovery as comfortable as possible. Post-operative visits are required for dressing change and to ensure there is no bleeding, fluid collection, or blood supply issues. Visits are scheduled based on doctor/patient preferences and needs.

Risks and Complications

Some of the potential risks associated with panniculectomy include:

  • Excessive bleeding
  • Seroma (fluid collection)
  • Infection
  • Blood clots
  • Abnormal scarring


  • Reduces chance of health problems like skin chafing and ulcers
  • Eliminates physical discomfort, such as back strain caused by extra weight in the belly
  • Removal of pannus
  • Restores ability to move and walk normally without the pannus getting in the way


The cost of panniculectomy could vary significantly depending on each patient’s individual needs. The total amount will be determined during your initial consultation at Woodglen Aesthetics. Contact your health insurance provider to see if this procedure is covered by your plan. We also offer patients without coverage various financial options and payment plans.

For more information about panniculectomy or about other surgical and non-surgical treatments, contact Woodglen Aesthetics at (626) 852-0599 to schedule an appointment.