Long-Term Quality-of-Life Outcomes After Body Contouring Surgery: Phase IV Results for the Body-QoL® Cohort

Aesthet Surg J. 2018 Feb 15;38(3):279-288. doi: 10.1093/asj/sjx090.


Background: Body contouring surgery (BCS) is becoming increasing popular for aesthetic and reconstructive purposes, particularly among patients with massive weight loss (MWL). However, data on quality of life (QoL) following the surgery are limited, especially long-term QoL.

Objectives: The authors evaluated the effect of BCS on QoL and the durability of this effect over time.

Methods: QoL was measured with the Body-QoL® instrument at 3 time points among consecutively treated patients: the day before BCS, 1 to 9 months postoperatively (short term), and 1 to 2.7 years postoperatively (long term). Total Body-QoL scores were compiled, as were scores for the instrument's main domains: body satisfaction, sex life, self-esteem and social performance, and physical symptoms. Scores were examined for the entire study population and separately for the cosmetic and MWL cohorts.

Results: Fifty-seven of the 112 patients participated in the short-term assessment and 84 in the long-term assessment. Total Body-QoL scores increased significantly (P < 0.0001), from 44.0 ± 14.1 preoperatively to 85.5 ± 17.5 short-term postoperatively and to 84.4 ± 12.7 long-term postoperatively. Scores for the 2 postoperative assessments did not differ significantly. Similar results were observed for scores on each separate domain. Although preoperative scores were lower for the MWL cohort than the cosmetic cohort (33.9 ± 15.6 vs 46.1 ± 12.8; P = 0.0002), they improved substantially after BCS, approaching scores for the cosmetic cohort.

Conclusions: QoL increases significantly after BCS. This favorable outcome remained stable throughout long-term follow-up and was true for the cosmetic and MWL cohorts.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial, Phase IV

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Body Contouring / psychology*
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Middle Aged
  • Patient Satisfaction*
  • Postoperative Period
  • Quality of Life*
  • Self Concept*
  • Treatment Outcome
  • Weight Loss*
  • Young Adult