Tummy tuck or Abdominoplasty, is a procedure in which excess fat and skin is removed from the lower portion of the abdomen. An incision is made just above the pubic region below the “bikini line” and the excess fat of the abdominal region may be removed. The surrounding tissue may be liposuctioned at the same time. There are two types of Tummy Tucks Operations, a Full Tummy Tuck and a Mini-Tummy Tuck. I have been performing Abdominoplasty Surgery in New York for over 20 years, and the results are both dramatic and satisfying!
Tummy Tuck Surgery Consultation
The consultation process (plan to spend at least one hour), includes an in-depth discussion about your desires with regard to your abdominal shape and contour after Abdominoplasty Surgery. It is the surgeon’s task to explain all aspects of the operation, the pros and cons, and most importantly, the concept of realistic expectations with regard to your postoperative result. I prefer to meet a second time with each patient prior to surgery to assure complete understanding of the her desires from her Tummy tuck operation.
The Ideal Candidate for a Tummy Tuck
If you have concerns about your abdominal region after weight loss or pregnancy, or your diet and exercise regimen helped you lose weight and tone your body everywhere but your abdomen, and you are a non-smoker, then Tummy Tuck Surgery is an excellent option for you.
Tummy Tuck Surgery can enhance your youthful appearance and improve your overall self confidence and self-esteem. The best candidates for Abdominoplasty Surgery are healthy women who are realistic about what the surgery can afford after a complete consultation. Abdominoplasty Surgery can be performed for various body types. The best results are usually achieved in patients who have plateaued to an ideal weight after diet and exercise.
Although planned future pregnancies are not a specific contraindication to having a Tummy Tuck Surgery, you may wish to consider postponing your surgery until childbearing is completed. Pregnancy will pretty much reverse many of the gains made from your Tummy Tuck.
The Tummy Tuck Procedure
A full Tummy Tuck involves an incision on the very lower portion of the abdomen above the pubic region which is well-hidden by bathing suits and clothing. The skin and fat layer is dissected away from the abdominal musculature layer and an incision is made around the umbilicus, or belly button. Redundant skin and fat is removed and the abdominal wall and muscles are tightened creating an “internal girdle” providing support.
Sometimes a small amount of liposuction is also included in the procedure when necessary. This procedure is extremely useful in patients who have had one or more pregnancies which caused the abdominal wall musculature to become significantly weaker, even when a great amount of exercise is done. Once the musculature is tightened surgically, a firm taut tummy can then be obtained. A significant change in body contour can be successfully achieved with a full Tummy Tuck.
A Mini Tummy Tuck is a procedure in which a smaller incision, (approximately 8 inches long) is made in the lower abdomen. It is located in the same region where a C-section scar is found. The advantage of the Mini Tummy Tuck is that the scar is smaller, the procedure is not as drastic,
and the down time is less. Not all patients are candidates for this operation and discussion should be made when deciding which of these two operations should be performed.
The Abdominoplasty operation is performed in my state of the art, fully certified operative suite in my office located on the Upper East Side in New York. Depending on the procedure, I utilize either general anesthesia, or local anesthesia with sedation, administered by one of our experienced, board certified anesthesiologists.
Scars on the lower abdomen are an inevitable consequence of this type of surgery, but I close the skin with great care and offer advice and support regarding scar care after surgery. I place the scar very low, well hidden by panties or bikini bottoms.
The Tummy Tuck Recovery
After the operation, you may have surgical drains which usually remain in place for approximately 5-7days, sometimes drains are not needed. Your abdomen will be wrapped in an abdominal binder. The dressings are usually changed a few days following the procedure and stitches are ready to begin being removed approximately one week later.
The healing process may be affected by smoking and concurrent medical problems such as diabetes. Occasionally, small areas of open skin at the corners of the incisions may occur. These are typically treated with antibiotic ointments and heal without great concern. After 1 or 2 weeks, the abdominal binder is replaced by Spanks for another 2 weeks.
Recovery after surgery takes 1-2 hours, with my RN at your side at all times. For your safety, I require that a friend, family member or private duty nurse accompany you home and spend at least one night with you. You will be given a follow-up appointment with me in 1-3 days.
Most of my patients return to work within 7-10 days postoperatively, and pain after surgery is well controlled with pain medication. My staff and I will counsel you regarding all aspects of scar care to achieve the best possible, least noticeable scars.
I have a great deal of experience with all aspects of Abdominoplasty Surgery, and comfortably possess the required expertise to allow me to achieve the best possible results for you. If you have had one or more pregnancies, lost a significant amount of weight, or cannot lose that pouchy tummy with diet and exercise, you may be a candidate for Abdominoplasty Surgery. Give me a call!
Tummy Tuck FAQs
Why does the scar from Abdominoplasty Surgery have to be so long?
The Abdominoplasty scar must be that long because it is the only way to obtain enough exposure to remove the necessary amount of redundant skin and fatty tissue and also tighten the abdominal wall. The scar is placed very low, and easily hidden by clothing or bikini bottoms.
Can I get a Tummy tuck to lose weight instead of dieting?
Abdominoplasty Surgery is not a weight loss tool. Best results are realized when patients lose as much weight as possible through diet and exercise beforehand. However, after one or more pregnancies, diet and exercise cannot always correct the abdominal wall weakness, and Tummy Tuck is then the best option.
Can I get pregnant after my Tummy Tuck?
While pregnancy after Abdominoplasty Surgery is possible, it will reverse many of the improvements achieved by the surgery. I recommend considering a Tummy Tuck after you have had all your children. It is quite common for patients to have tubal ligation (tubes tied) by their gynecologist at the same time as their Tummy Tuck.
If I have a hernia present on my abdomen, can it be repaired at the same time as my Abdominoplasty Surgery?
Yes, it is quite common to have an abdominal or umbilical (belly button) hernia repaired at the same time as Abdominoplasty Surgery. Usually a general surgeon performs the hernia repair.
How soon can I start working out after my Tummy Tuck Surgery?
There should be no strenuous exercise for 4 weeks after surgery, then light workouts may begin after clearance by your surgeon.