If you’ve ever looked in the mirror and daydreamed about getting a nip/tuck in your midsection?
Then most likely you’ve considered a tummy tuck. Also referred to as an abdominoplasty procedure, a tummy tuck can take off the extra layers of fat and excess skin that stubbornly sticks to the midsections regardless of diet and exercise.
What is abdominoplasty?
A tummy tuck, or abdominoplasty, is a surgical procedure that is suitable for women and men who are in good overall health. It is considered major surgery that can improve the appearance of aging, stretch marks, skin folds, and loss of skin elasticity, giving the abdomen a flattened, firmer shape.
Many patients undergo a procedure for a tummy tuck to restore muscles that have been weakened or separated in an effort to regain a smoother, firmer abdominal profile.
Weakened or separated muscles could be caused by one or more of the following:
- Past surgeries
- Major fluctuations in weight gain and loss
There are two types of Adbominoplasties available to patients: complete Abdominoplasty and Partial/Mini Abdominoplasty.
The first includes an incision made just above the hairline, low on the belly. (This is helpful as most undergarments and bathing suits will cover post-surgical scars. In fact, some patients cover the scar with a tattoo once the physician gives his or her approval.) The plastic surgeon will then pull the skin down like a curtain, as tightly as possible, and remove the excess skin.
The remaining skin will be sewn together to give a smooth shape to the abdomen area.
Drainage tubes may be used, often placed under the skin and removed in two to three days by a surgeon.
The second type of abdominoplasty is the Partial/Mini abdominoplasty where a surgeon removes fat deposits below the navel. Short incisions allow the surgeon to insert an endoscope (a small camera located on the end of a tube).
Both last about two hours and are highly individualized procedures that are often considered body contouring operations. It should not be confused with liposuction. Liposuction is a cosmetic surgery procedure that removes fat deposits.
However, liposuction can be performed as a part of the abdominoplasty procedure. You may need to discuss these with your physician as one might be right for your needs.
Because patients receive general anesthesia, someone will need to drive you home and stay with you at least the first night after surgery.
It takes about one week to 10 days for patients to recover from an abdominoplasty procedure.
Patients are often cleared to return to work full time with some limitations on the physical activity until they have fully recovered.
Could I be a candidate for a tummy tuck?
If you have Individuals who of otherwise normal body weight and proportion can develop an abdomen that protrudes or is loose and sagging. If you are in good physical health and maintain a stable weight, then you would make a good candidate for a tummy tuck.
Being in the right frame of mind when considering a tummy tuck is always a good idea. Your doctor can work with you to be sure that this is the right surgery for you. Here are some things to consider before signing on the dotted line:
- A procedure for tummy tuck surgery should be the last resort in getting a firmer, shapelier stomach region.
- Make sure you are undergoing surgery for yourself and not fulfilling another’s wishes.
- Be realistic with your expectations.
- If you smoke, you should quit prior to surgery.
When to Reconsider a Tummy Tuck
An abdominoplasty procedure is considered permanent but could vary over time if you experience fluctuations in your weight. If you plan to lose a substantial amount of weight loss or plan to become pregnant in the future, you may need to postpone your tummy tuck procedure.
It’s important to keep in mind that a procedure for a tummy tuck is not a miracle surgery. They have limitations, as do most surgical options. A tummy tuck is not a substitute for a weight loss or exercise regime, but an abdominoplasty procedure can give you a firmer shape.