Tummy Tuck (abdominoplasty)
Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty)
There are several different tummy tuck techniques. The most common procedure is performed under general anesthesia, called a full tummy tuck.
If your only problem area is below the belly button, you may benefit from a less complex procedure called a mini tummy tuck, which can often be performed on an outpatient basis, under local anesthetic, such as that used by dentists. Or, your surgeon may recommend either a mini, full or extended tummy tuck, done in conjunction with liposuction to remove fat deposits from the hips, for a better body contour. Sometimes liposuction alone offers the best results.
Mini- Tummy Tuck
A mini tummy tuck, or partial/mini abdominoplasty, is a great option for people who have a small amount of abdominal skin to be removed and do not have a significantly protruding abdominal muscle wall. Individuals whose tummies are sagging with age or people who would just like to sculpt a slim tummy into a more desirable shape may find that a mini tummy tuck is an excellent option for them. (Please view right picture for length of scar, which is short and inconspicuous.)
Mini tummy tuck surgery may be performed under general anesthesia, but is usually completed with a local anesthetic and mild sedation. The surgeon will make a smaller incision than a traditional/full tummy tuck requires, but the length of the incision will depend on the amount of skin to be removed. This is why mini tummy tuck surgery is also sometimes known as a “scarless tummy tuck.” The surgeon usually does not have to reposition the navel. Next, the surgeon will stretch the skin and shape it by cutting away the excess and stitching the remaining skin into place.
This frequently is performed with liposuction to sculpt the tummy into the desired shape.
A traditional tummy tuck is best suited for healthy individuals who are fairly physically fit, but are unable to achieve their desired abdominal appearance through diet and exercise. Women whose abdominal skin and muscles have been stretched by pregnancy or further damaged by cesarean sections are good candidates for treatment. Tummy tuck procedures are also excellent for individuals who have experienced dramatic weight loss, but are unhappy with the sagging belly left behind. Both women and men can be appropriate candidates for tummy tucks. (Please view right picture for length of scar, which extends just toward the hip area.)
In the full tummy tuck procedure, the surgeon will make a long incision along the bikini-line, often from hip to hip. Next, the navel will be cut away from the surrounding tissue, because it will need to be returned to the proper position once the skin has been stretched into place. Usually the surgeon will tighten the abdominal muscle wall by stitching the muscles into position. The surgeon will then stretch the skin and shape it by cutting away the excess and stitching the remaining skin into place. A hole for the navel will then be cut, and the navel will be stitched into place. This is usually done under general anesthesia.
Although this is up to the individual surgeon, liposuction is usually performed at the same time to create a nice contour.
Best Candidates for a Tummy Tuck
The best candidates for a tummy tuck are people who are in otherwise good mental and physical health but have large, unmanageable fat deposits along their waist that no manner of diet or exercise will reduce. Abdominoplasty are particularly useful for women who have had a number of children and consequently stretched their abdominal muscles past point of no return. Women who plan on getting pregnant or plan on losing a great deal of weight should hold off on getting a tummy tuck. Loss of elasticity in the skin in older patients can also be improved with this procedure.
The exact benefits vary from person to person, so please discuss your expectations with your surgeon and he can suggest the right procedures.
Benefits of Tummy Tuck
The tummy tuck, or abdominoplasty, can dramatically tighten the abdominal muscles, as well as the sagging, excess skin and accumulated fatty tissue. Not only will the abdomen be firmer and flatter, but the waist will be smaller as well.
The amount of improvement depends upon the extent of surgery and the patient’s skin tone, body build, and healing process. Most people are happy with the results, and report a better body image after the surgery.
Recovery and Post Op Care
A tummy tuck will require one to three nights in our clinic, depending on the extent of the surgery. The first few days after an abdominoplasty are the most painful, as the amount of soreness and swelling are at their highest point immediately following the procedure, but this can be controlled by medication. In any case, abdominoplasty patients will experience soreness and tenderness in their lower torso, and must exhibit extreme caution to not disturb their stitches and sutures while their skin heals. The surgeon will remove the stitches after five to seven days, after which the patient will need to wear a specially designed support garment to ensure proper healing.
Returning to normal after a tummy tuck takes a bit of time. You will normally be able to walk around soon after, however at first you may not be able to stand straight. After the first week you should be able to resume normal (soft) activity. A great deal of recovery depends on your physical state before the surgery, and your physical activity after it. While light exercise may seem painful at first, it is absolutely necessary to guarantee proper healing and to reduce or prevent a number of serious post-operative risks, such as blood clots and excess swelling.
Some patients return to work as little as two weeks after the procedure, while others take longer to heal. The scar will depend on how large the operated area is – it can be as small as a caesarean incision, or a longer scar across the abdomen. At about nine months any scarring will likely subside, giving you the freedom to show off your new stomach to the whole world.
We provide excellent post-care support, with follow-up visits and programs to assist your recovery. If you have any questions or concerns, please let us know and we will schedule and appointment with the surgeon. View our recommendations for post-operative recovery.
Recommended length of stay on holiday