Abdominoplasty, or tummy tuck, helps to flatten and shape the abdomen and waist by removing excess fat and skin and tightening muscles. The best candidates have pockets of fat or loose skin that haven’t responded well to diet and exercise. The procedure can also be useful for women with stretched skin and muscles from pregnancy.
The procedure takes approximately two to five hours and can be performed with general anesthesia or local anesthesia with a sedative. Recovery time ranges from two weeks to a few months. With a balanced diet and regular exercise, results are long-lasting. Abdominoplasty will likely leave a permanent scar stretching between the hips, although it should be low enough for even a bikini to conceal it.
Who is a good candidate for a tummy tuck?
The best candidates for abdominoplasty are in good physical condition with pockets of fat or loose skin that haven’t responded well to diet and exercise. We can also help older, slightly obese people whose skin has lost some of its elasticity.
Abdominoplasty can also be useful for women with stretched skin and muscles from pregnancy. Results from the tummy tuck procedure will likely diminish if women continue to bear children, so we advise patients who plan to become pregnant to delay abdominoplasty.
We also encourage patients who intend to lose a lot of weight to wait before undergoing the procedure, since skin in the abdominal area typically loosens after substantial weight loss.
Customized Treatment for Optimal Cosmetic Results
We take the time during every pre-operative consultation to learn what his patients want to achieve from a tummy tuck both for their bodies and for their self-confidence. By listening to what patients have to say and closely examining them rather than performing a one-size-fits-all procedure on every person, we provide patients with completely customized treatment that takes into account their specific goals.
The Tummy Tuck Procedure
Abdominoplasty takes approximately two to five hours under general anesthesia. The surgeon will make two incisions: one from hipbone to hipbone close to the pubic area, and another around the navel. He or she will separate the skin from the abdominal muscles, which are then pulled together and stitched into place for a firmer abdomen and narrower waist. He or she will stretch the skin flap down and over the newly tightened muscles, remove excess skin, and reattach the navel in a natural position. Finally, he or she will close the incisions and apply sterile surgical dressings over the sutured areas.
Recovery after Abdominoplasty
A temporary tube may be inserted to drain excess fluid from the surgical site.
Recovery time ranges from two weeks to a few months.
Tummy Tuck Results
Abdominoplasty will leave a scar spanning the lower abdomen from hip to hip. We are very careful to make the incision low enough for even a bikini to conceal the scar.
With a balanced diet and regular exercise, results are long-lasting.
Risks of Abdominoplasty
Though rare, post-operative complications from surgery are possible. They may include infection, blood clots, and poor healing, which may require further surgery.
Patients who have had previous abdominal surgery should know that their old scars could be raised, stretched or generally more noticeable after the procedure. A scar revision procedure after abdominoplasty may minimize the appearance of an unsightly scar.
Partial Abdominoplasty (“Mini Tummy Tuck”)
Partial abdominoplasty is similar to abdominoplasty except a shorter incision is made and the skin is only lifted to the navel, which does not have to be moved.
Click here to view Abdominoplasty Before and After photos in our gallery.