What is a Tummy Tuck?
Abdominoplasty, known more commonly as a "tummy tuck," is a major surgical procedure to remove excess skin and fat from the middle and lower abdomen and to tighten the muscles of your abdominal wall. By tightening your muscles and narrowing your waist, this procedure can dramatically reduce the appearance of a protruding abdomen.
Tummy Tuck Surgery
A complete abdominoplasty usually takes two to three hours and is done under general anesthesia. A tummy tuck usually requires an overnight hospital stay. Dr. Siwy makes a hipbone-to-hipbone cut just above the pubic area. A smaller second incision is made to free the navel from surrounding tissue. Next, she separates the skin from the abdominal wall and lifts a large skin flap to tighten the vertical abdominal muscles and create a firmer abdominal wall and narrower waistline. During the surgery, the extra skin is removed and a new opening is prepared for your navel, which is then stitched in place.
Partial abdominoplasty takes less time, typically an hour or two. In partial abdominoplasty, the skin is separated only between the cut line and the navel (not all the way up the abdominal wall) and this skin flap is stretched down, the excess is removed, and the flap is stitched back into place.
After Surgery and Recovery
For the first few days, your abdomen will probably be swollen and you're likely to feel some pain and discomfort which can be controlled by medication. It may take you weeks or months to feel completely healed. The better your physical condition, the faster you're likely to heal. Exercise during the healing period will help you recover faster.
Thousands of abdominoplasties are performed successfully each year. When done by a qualified plastic surgeon trained in body contouring, the results are typically quite positive. Nevertheless, there are always risks associated with surgery and specific complications associated with this procedure. Post-operative complications such as infection and blood clots are rare, but can occur. Moving around as soon after the surgery as possible will minimize the risk of clotting.
Abdominoplasty, whether partial or complete, produces excellent results for patients with weakened abdominal muscles or excess skin. And in most cases, the results are long lasting, if you follow a balanced diet and exercise regularly.