If you have lost weight through diet and exercise, but you still have paunch or excess skin around your midsection, you may be considering a tummy tuck. Also known as, “abdominoplasty, this surgical procedure removes undesired fat and excess skin, along with tightening the muscles of the abdominal wall. The results are a leaner, flatter abdomen. Sometimes liposuction is performed with a tummy tuck to remove additional fat. It is important to know a bit about the procedure before deciding if it is right for you.
Candidates for a Tummy Tuck
Both men and women who are in good health can consider a tummy tuck procedure. Women who have been pregnant multiple times are often prime candidates for tightening of the abdominal muscles and removal of excess skin. Men or women who have lost a great deal of weight can also benefit if they find they are dealing with loose skin and excess fat deposits in the abdominal area.
It is best to wait until you are sure you are done having children or do not wish to become pregnant to have the procedure performed, as surgically tightened muscles can become separated during future pregnancies. Also, a tummy tuck is not an alternative option to weight loss. It should only be performed after you have lost weight or if you are not planning to lose a large amount of weight.
Types of Tummy Tuck
You will be able to meet with Dr. Nicholas Tarola at Tarola Plastic Surgery to receive a consultation and discuss your needs. There are several options depending on your issues and what you hope to achieve. A complete abdominoplasty involves cutting the abdomen from hipbone to hipbone, then contouring the muscle, tissue, and skin. During this type of surgery, your belly button will be re-positioned, and you may need to have drainage tubes placed beneath your skin for just a few days. A Partial or mini abdominoplasty are best for those whose excess fat is below the belly button. This is often a shorter procedure of about two hours because the navel will likely not need to be moved.
The Procedure and Recovery
Depending on how extensive your surgery is, it could take from about one to five hours to complete. You will receive general anesthesia and may need to stay overnight. For a few days after surgery, you will experience some pain and swelling. Soreness could continue for weeks or months, but your doctor can prescribe pain medicine. Possible complications include blood clots, bleeding beneath the skin flap or infection. Poor healing could require additional surgery. Expect some scarring to remain after healing. Prescription cream may lessen scars.
Though tummy tuck is considered major surgery, it has minimal risks and is a proven method to tighten skin around your abdomen.
Schedule a consultation today with Dr. Tarola if you have any questions or concerns.