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How to Get Rid of FUPA (Fat Upper Pubic Area)

Woman covering pubic area with hands.

When looking for an aesthetically pleasing body shape, many people find themselves seeking information on a common, yet often misunderstood, condition known as FUPA. Here we’ll examine FUPA, its causes, and the surgical options available for its removal, including a rundown of the advantages, considerations and risks associated with each treatment.

What is FUPA?

FUPA, an acronym for Fat Upper Pubic Area, refers to excess fat located above the pubic bone (mons pubis). This condition can affect both men and women and is characterized by a bulge in the lower abdominal region.
Various factors can cause the development of fat in the upper pubic area, including weight gain, rapid weight loss, aging, and genetics.

It is not always linked to obesity and can affect individuals of all body types. It is important to note that having a FUPA may convey no health risks at all, and the choice to reduce it is a purely aesthetic and personal one.

Who May Experience a FUPA?

Fat in the upper pubic area can occur in individuals of any gender, age, and body type for a variety of reasons. These commonly include:

Weight Fluctuations: Significant weight gain or loss can lead to the development of a FUPA due to the body’s redistribution of fat.
Pregnancy: Women often experience a FUPA following pregnancy due to stretched skin and abdominal muscles, as well as localized fat accumulation during pregnancy.
Aging: With age, the body’s metabolism slows down, and there is a natural tendency for stubborn fat to accumulate in the abdominal area, including the upper pubic region.
Genetics: Some people are genetically predisposed to carry more fat in the lower abdomen and pubic area, making them more likely to develop fat in the upper pubic area.
Hormonal Changes: Hormonal fluctuations, such as those occurring during menopause, can result in increased fat storage in the abdominal area.

Why Does It Happen?

The body stores fat in various regions, including the abdomen, for energy reserves and protection of internal organs. Different individuals store fat in different regions – there is no single gender-dependent pattern of fat storage.
However, due to factors like genetics, diet, lifestyle, hormonal changes, and the body’s natural aging process, fat distribution in an individual can become uneven over time.

The pubic area is one such region where the body may store excess fat, leading to the appearance of a FUPA. Many consider this unsightly and seek treatment to reduce it.

Health Considerations of a FUPA

Beyond aesthetic concerns, a FUPA may also be associated with health issues in some cases, including insulin resistance or a higher risk of metabolic syndrome. However, this condition has more to do with overall abdominal fat rather than FUPA alone.

For many, the concern with fat in the upper pubic area is primarily related to physical appearance and personal comfort. In some cases, it can negatively impact body confidence and mood.

It is essential to understand that fat in the upper pubic area can result from a complex interplay of factors. It’s not solely linked to weight or health status but can be influenced by a range of conditions, including natural body changes and genetics.
This awareness can help in addressing both the psychological and physical aspects of having a FUPA and guide individuals in seeking appropriate treatments or interventions.

These may include lifestyle changes, exercise, or, in some cases, surgical options to reduce the swelling in the pubic region.

Apron Belly vs. FUPA

While discussing FUPA, it’s important to distinguish it from an apron belly, which is excess skin and fat that hangs down over the abdominal area, often a result of significant weight loss or post-pregnancy changes. While both conditions involve the accumulation of excess body fat, a FUPA is specifically located in the pubic area, whereas an apron belly affects a broader section of the lower abdomen. Apron belly can be caused by an excess of skin following significant weight loss, rather than fat. Different treatments may be appropriate for an apron belly.

An infographic comparing “Apron Belly” and “FUPA”.

Here are some other key distinctions between the two conditions:

Location and Appearance

Apron Belly: Also known as a pannus, an apron belly occurs when excess fat and skin hang down over the lower abdomen, sometimes covering the pubic area and extending towards the thighs. This condition can create a noticeable “apron-like” overhang, which can be large and extend significantly beyond the body’s frame.

FUPA: This refers to the accumulation of fat directly above the pubic bone, leading to a bulge in the lower abdomen. Unlike an apron belly, a FUPA is localized to the upper pubic area and does not necessarily hang over or extend as far down.


Apron Belly: Causes can include significant weight loss (leading to excess skin), obesity (leading to excess fat and skin), pregnancy, and aging. The apron belly is often associated with larger shifts in body weight or composition.
FUPA: Can be caused by moderate weight gain, pregnancy (due to the stretching of skin and separation of the abdominal muscles), hormonal changes, and genetics. A FUPA can occur even in individuals who are otherwise of a normal weight or body composition.

Health Implications

Apron Belly: The larger volume and weight of an apron belly can lead to physical discomfort, skin irritation, infections within the skin, and difficulty with physical activity. It may also be associated with more significant health issues related to obesity.
FUPA: While often a cosmetic concern, fat in the upper pubic area can also cause discomfort in tight clothing and impact self-esteem. It is less likely to result in the physical health issues associated with an apron belly but can still be a sign of fat accumulation around the abdomen.

Treatment and Management

Apron Belly: Treatment may involve both weight management and surgical interventions like a panniculectomy (removal of the excess skin and fat) or abdominoplasty (tummy tuck) to address both the excess fat and the excess skin.
FUPA: Treatment can include lifestyle changes (healthy diet and regular exercise) targeting overall body fat reduction and, for cosmetic concerns, procedures such as liposuction or a pubic lift (monsplasty) to reduce the fat and improve the area’s appearance.

Psychological Impact

Both conditions can significantly affect an individual’s self-esteem and body image. However, the extent and nature of this impact can vary based on personal perceptions, the severity of the condition, and its visibility in daily life.
In summary, while apron belly and FUPA share similarities as conditions involving excess fat in the lower abdomen, their differences in location, severity, associated health risks, and treatment options are significant.
If you have either condition, your first post of call is a health professional who can advise on the most effective and appropriate course of treatment.

FUPA Surgery

Various options exist to address a FUPA surgically, each treatment tailored to the individual’s needs. Let’s explore each in turn.

Monsplasty (Pubic Lift)

  • Pricing: Varied, depending on the extent of the procedure.
  • Procedure Time: 1-2 hours.
  • Recovery Time: 1-2 weeks for basic activities, full recovery in 4-6 weeks.

Monsplasty, also known as a pubic lift, is surgery aimed at reducing excess fat and skin in the mons pubis region. This operation not only eliminates unwanted fatty upper pubic area but also tightens loose skin, offering a more toned and contoured appearance. Patients can expect a straightforward recovery process, with most returning to light activities within a week or two and experiencing full benefits within a few months.

Side-by-side comparison of 'Before and After' monsplasty illustrations.

Risks and Side Effects

Like all surgical procedures, monsplasty carries certain risks and potential side effects. Understanding these risks is crucial for anyone considering the procedure. Here are the most common risks and side effects associated with monsplasty:

  • Infection – There’s a risk of infection at the incision site, despite preventive measures.
  • Scarring – Scarring is inevitable, though its severity varies by individual healing and surgical technique.
  • Swelling and Bruising – Common post-surgery, these symptoms typically diminish within a few weeks.
  • Pain and Discomfort – Patients generally experience some level of pain, manageable with medication.
  • Changes in Sensation – There may be temporary or, rarely, permanent changes in skin sensation around the surgical area due to potential nerve damage.

Tummy Tuck

  • Pricing: Depends on the complexity of the procedure.
  • Procedure Time: 2-5 hours.
  • Recovery Time: Initial recovery in 2-3 weeks, full effects seen after several months.

A Tummy Tuck, or abdominoplasty, is another effective surgical option for FUPA removal. This surgical procedure not only targets the removal of excess body fat but also tightens abdominal muscles and removes loose skin, resulting in a flatter and more defined abdomen.

Abdominal surgery is especially beneficial for those with sagging skin after weight loss or childbirth.

Tummy tuck before and after.

Risks and Side Effects

Like any operation, a tummy tuck can have unintended side effects. Here are the most common risks and complications of the procedure:

  • Infection – Although rare, there is a risk of infection at the incision sites, which can require antibiotics or additional treatment.
  • Scarring – An abdominal surgery will result in a permanent scar, typically along the lower abdomen. The appearance of the scar can vary and may be more pronounced in some individuals.
  • Blood Clots (Deep Vein Thrombosis, Pulmonary Embolism) – Surgery increases the risk of blood clots forming in the legs, which can travel to the lungs (pulmonary embolism), a potentially life-threatening condition.
  • Poor Wound Healing – Some patients may experience delayed healing of the incision sites, which can lead to significant scarring or the need for additional surgeries.
  • Numbness or Changes in Skin Sensation – Temporary or permanent numbness in the abdominal skin can occur due to nerve damage during the procedure.

Fupa Liposuction

  • Pricing: Can vary based on the specific needs of the patient.
  • Procedure Time: 1-3 hours.
  • Recovery Time: Recovery times can vary, with most patients resuming normal activities within a few weeks.

FUPA liposuction specifically targets the removal of excess fat cells from the pubic area through liposuction techniques. This cosmetic surgery is ideal for those looking to reduce the volume of the upper pubic area without the need for addressing loose skin.

Patients undergoing FUPA liposuction can expect a significant improvement in the contour of their pubic region, with a similar recovery timeline to other liposuction procedures.

Risks and Side Effects

As an invasive procedure, there can be some discomforting side effects to pubic liposuction, although your surgeon will be able to accurately appraise you of your personal risk before proceeding.

Complications can include:

  • Bruising and Swelling – Common side effects that usually resolve within a few weeks, though swelling may persist for longer.
  • Infection – There’s a risk of infection at the incision or cannula entry points, which can be managed with antibiotics if it occurs.
  • Irregular Contours or Asymmetry – Uneven fat removal can lead to lumps, indentations, or asymmetry in the treated area.
  • Changes in Skin Sensation – Temporary or sometimes permanent numbness in the treated area can occur due to nerve damage during the procedure.
  • Scarring – Small scars from the liposuction cannula entry points are possible, though they are typically less noticeable than scars from more invasive surgeries.

Differences between Public Area Liposuction and Monsplasty

Although often used as interchangeable, these are subtly different procedures. Here are the main differences between these two popular FUPA interventions:

Focus of Procedure: Pubic Area Liposuction focuses solely on fat removal, while Monsplasty addresses both fat and excess skin, providing a lifting effect to the pubic area.
Invasiveness: Monsplasty is generally more invasive than Pubic Area Liposuction because it involves skin excision and lifting.
Recovery Time: Recovery from monsplasty typically takes longer than recovery from liposuction alone due to the more extensive nature of the procedure.
Ideal Candidates: The choice between the two procedures depends on the patient’s specific concerns (excess pubic fat vs. excess pubic fat and loose skin) and their desired outcomes.

FUPA: A treatable condition

The removal of FUPA through surgical procedures such as Monsplasty, Tummy Tuck, and FUPA Liposuction offers individuals the opportunity to achieve their desired body contour. Each cosmetic procedure has its benefits and recovery process, tailored to meet the unique needs of each patient. Consulting with a professional like SpaMedica’s Dr. Bell, with extensive expertise in these areas, is essential to ensure the best possible advice and outcome.


What Does a Fupa Look Like?

A FUPA appears as a bulge of excess mons pubis fat, varying in size among individuals.

How painful is a monsplasty?

Discomfort is manageable with prescribed medications, and most patients find the pain to be less than anticipated.

Does a pubic lift make you tighter?

While a pubic lift primarily removes excess fat and skin, it can result in a tighter appearance in the pubic area.

Are there non-invasive treatments for FUPA?

If surgery is not a viable option, patients can consider treatments like cryolipolysis (fat cell freezing), radiofrequency treatment or ultrasound (collagen stimulation), electromagnetic muscle stimulation, or laser lipolysis.
Discuss available options with a specialist before considering any of these treatments.

What is the best plastic surgery to remove a FUPA?

The best surgery depends on the individual’s specific needs, body type, and desired outcome. Consultation with a skilled plastic surgeon is crucial.

Dr. Thomas Bell | SpaMedica

by Dr. Thomas Bell

Dr. Tom Bell, with over 25 years of practice experience dedicated to cosmetic plastic surgery, pioneered Avenue Road and Yorkville as Toronto’s Beverly Hills of plastic surgery with his first surgical center in Yorkville’s Avenue road corridor back in 1986. Named as Canada’s best plastic surgeon by W magazine and one of the world’s best, Dr. Bell returns home to join the SpaMedica Plastic Surgery team as the reigning King of Plastic Surgery.
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