Tummy tuck enhances the appearance of the lower abdomen by removing stubborn fat that is resistant to diet and exercise, and tightening the internal abdominal wall muscles. It is popular among women following pregnancy, as well as both men and women after major weight loss. Patients considering this surgery should be in good physical health, and near their goal weight.
Full Tummy Tuck
A traditional (full) tummy tuck is suitable for both men and women who have a moderate amount of excess skin in their midsection. It is commonly performed on women post-pregnancy. During this surgery, the incision extends from hipbone to hipbone, which grants the surgeon access to a greater portion of the internal structures. Liposuction is used to remove fat and the abdominal muscles are pulled and tightly secured. The belly button is usually repositioned for natural placement.
Mini Tummy Tuck
People who are in relatively good condition but want a flatter stomach may prefer a mini tummy tuck. These patients have loose abdominal fascia. However, the muscles are not stretched to the point where a full tummy tuck is required.
During the surgery, a smaller incision is made across the lower abdomen. Liposuction is used to remove excess fat. The remaining skin is pulled tight. The belly button is not affected by this surgery.
During – After Surgery
A tummy tuck is performed under general anesthesia in hospital and typically takes around 3 hours to complete. After surgery, patients will wear a compression garment and will need to rest for the first 48 hours. They should make a concerted effort to move around in order to help promote blood circulation, but should only attempt to initially stand at a 45-degree angle to protect the incision. Pain medication will be provided to help with post-operative pain. Clearance to resume exercise is usually given around 4-6 weeks.
Tummy Tuck Or Liposuction?
Patients who have loose skin in the lower abdomen may be better candidates for a skin tightening procedure such as a tummy tuck. If a patient is battling unwanted belly fat, but otherwise has good skin tone, liposuction (which removes fat only) may be all that is needed.
Abdominoplasty can be combined with another cosmetic procedure, such as breast augmentation, a breast lift or liposuction that targets another area of the body.
What About Scarring?
Unfortunately, scarring is a part of this procedure. However, every effort is made to minimize scarring, and the incisions are generally placed in locations easily concealed by undergarments. For women who have had a previous C-section, the original C-section scar will be replaced with the tummy tuck incision.
New Pregnancy ? Weight Gain?
For optimal results, it is recommended that patients wait to have abdominoplasty until after all pregnancies have been completed. This is to ensure the stretching and weight gain that occurs with pregnancy does not compromise the results of the surgery. Normal birth can not be done after this operation. Cesarean birth can be done at least 2 years after surgery.