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Apron Stomach / Belly Overhang

Apron Stomach / Belly Overhang

‘Apron stomach’, also referred to as ‘belly overhang’ or ‘pannus’, is a term used to describe a pouch of excess skin and fat overlying the lower abdomen. This pouch hangs, similar to an apron, over the lower groin/pubic area and can occur as the result of rapid or extreme weight loss, or following pregnancy and birth.

An apron stomach can arise in both men and women and may cause a number of problems. As well as having an unfavourable cosmetic appearance, belly overhang can lead to poor skin hygiene, chafing and discomfort. This may contribute to many individuals feeling self-conscious and having problems with their self-esteem and confidence. Having an apron stomach can also place significant restrictions on a person’s choice of clothing and activities, in particular physical activity and exercise.

In the occurrence of an apron stomach, measures such as the use of anti-chafing creams, special attention to skin hygiene and wearing appropriate supportive bands or clothing can be beneficial. These can help in reducing discomfort and allowing individuals to continue with their daily activities.

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About this condition

Belly overhang can be difficult to treat. The abdominal wall is comprised of several layers, including the skin, a layer of abdominal muscles (also known as the ‘six-pack’) and layers of fat both above and below the muscle layer. Although exercise, weight loss and toning the abdominal muscles can help to a degree, apron stomach typically is comprised of additional fat located between the skin and muscle layer so can be stubborn to remove. Having belly overhang can also place significant limitations on the individual’s ability to exercise in the first place.

There are a number of aesthetic procedures that can be carried out to reduce the appearance of an apron stomach.  These include fat freezing, which aims to remove some of the excess fat cells around the lower abdomen. It does not require any surgical incisions, and as such have a lower risk profile and can be done as a day case.

More definitive results can be achieved through body contouring and surgical procedures. Primarily, a ‘panniculectomy’ is a particular body contouring surgery that aims to remove the excess skin and fat that make up the ‘pannus’ or apron stomach through an incision across the lower abdomen. This can be done in conjunction with additional surgical techniques, such as liposuction, to give an improved final shape to the abdomen.

Mr Ioannis Goutos is a well-respected plastic surgeon, with a special interest in scars, burns and body contouring procedures. He is able to offer a number of surgical and non-surgical treatments with gold-standard aftercare and excellent cosmetic results. During your initial consultation and assessment, Mr Goutos will be able to discuss all of your target areas and treatment goals, and be able to advise and guide you to the best procedure, or procedures, to achieve your desired outcomes.

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