Abdominoplasty(Tummy Tuck )
Tummy-tuck surgery or abdominoplasty, can flatten your abdomen by removing loose, excess fat and skin and tightening muscles in the abdominal wall. It can also remove some if not all of the stretch marks in your lower abdomen. It is popular following pregnancy, massive weight loss or whenever a flabby abdomen with weak muscles impairs body contour. Most patients report improved self-esteem as a result of this procedure.
– Tummy-tuck surgery will restore a flat tummy.
– You will look better in clothes and swimwear.
– You will have a more youthful-looking body.
– You will have a scar (located in the bikini area).
– Another pregnancy may influence surgery results, so it is best to wait until you’ve finished having children before undergoing this procedure.
– Weight gain following abdominoplasty may negatively affect your surgery results.
Am I a good candidate Abdominoplasty(Tummy Tuck )?
– If you’ve got flab, stretch marks or excess skin in your abdomen that does not improve with diet or exercise.
– If the shape of your abdomen has been affected by pregnancy or massive weight loss.
– If you feel that your protruding abdomen is unattractive.
– If your self-confidence is marred by your stomach contour.
About Your Procedure:
How is a tummy tuck procedure performed?
– Your surgeon will mark your abdomen to indicate the location of the incisions, the center of your torso and the location of the repositioned navel.
– A solution of lidocaine (a local anesthetic) and epinephrine (a vasoconstrictor that controls bleeding by constricting blood vessels) will be injected.
– The primary tummy tuck incision will be above the pubic mound, from one hipbone to the other. In a full abdominoplasty, another incision is made around your navel. In a mini-tummy tuck, your surgeon will use a shorter incision.
– The surgeon will loosen the skin from your abdominal wall to your ribcage and then place sutures in the fascia of your abdominal muscles to pull them into a tighter position. This is the muscle repair portion of the surgery.
– After your abdominal muscles have been sutured, your surgeon will remove excess fat by liposuction or other methods. Your abdominal skin is then stretched down over your incision line and the excess skin is removed.
– Next, your surgeon will mark the placement of your navel. Although the skin around your navel has been moved, the navel almost always stays in the same place. Your surgeon cuts a hole through the redraped skin and sutures it around your navel.
– Your surgeon will use tissue glue, sutures, staples or Steri-Strips to close the incisions.
– In a full abdominoplasty, the surgeon will often insert one or more drains to prevent fluid buildup, which can cause pressure on the incision
What will my tummy tuck incisions and scars be like?
The incision for a full abdominoplasty usually runs from hipbone to hipbone, and may be in a V-cut or U-cut shape, so that the scar can be hidden in a bikini. Your surgeon will determine the shape and length of the incision based on your preferences and the amount of correction you need. You may also have an incision around the navel.
With a mini-tummy tuck, the surgeon can place the incision as low as possible; it can be hidden in the pubic bone area. The abdominal skin that is removed is below the navel, and there are no incisions around the navel.
Preparing For Your Procedure:
In advance of your procedure, your surgeon will ask you to:
– Stop smoking well before undergoing surgery to better promote healing.
– Avoid taking aspirin, certain anti-inflammatory medications and some herbal medications that can cause increased bleeding.
– Regardless of the type of surgery to be performed, hydration is very important before and after surgery for safe recovery.
– If he or she recommends weight benchmarks or lifestyle changes, do your best to achieve them to ensure the best results and minimize the chance of complications.
Aftercare And Recovery
Immediately after your tummy tuck
You may expect the following immediately after the procedure:
– As the anesthesia wears off, you may feel dizzy, disoriented, and nauseated. These sensations should pass within a few hours, although some types of oral pain medications may cause these symptoms to recur.
– If you return home the same day, you will need someone to drive you. Depending on the extent of the procedure, you may be required to spend a night or two in the hospital recovering from surgery.
– Immediately following an abdominoplasty, expect your abdomen to feel very sore or tender. Any pain you feel can be controlled with pain medications.
– Your incision site will be covered with a dressing to keep the area clean and protected. You will also be wearing a wide elastic compression garment to reduce swelling and provide support to the skin as it tightens. You will wear this garment for several weeks.
– Depending on the extent of your abdominoplasty, you may have tubes in your incision to drain away fluid. You will be asked to empty the drains a few times a day and keep track of how much fluid comes out. Drains are usually removed from three to fourteen days after your surgery, depending on how much fluid is coming out.
– If you have traditional sutures, these will typically be removed within the first week or two (absorbable sutures will not have to be removed).
Recovery time frame after a tummy tuck
Recovery from a tummy tuck procedure occurs over a period of six months or more.
– The first few days after surgery, you should rest quietly. Remember, you must not take aspirin or certain anti-inflammatory medications. To prevent coughing and bleeding, do not smoke after your procedure. Do not drink alcohol for five days after surgery or while you are taking pain medication.
– Arrange for someone to help you get around the house and help with your medication for at least the first two days after surgery.
– Make sure you continue to have lots of help at home. You’ll be tempted to try to help around the house, but you won’t feel like yourself for at least seven to ten days and you still shouldn’t do any heavy lifting (such as picking up your children or baskets of laundry) for four to six weeks. If you have small children, you must put someone else totally in charge of their care for at least two weeks.
– Follow your surgeon’s instructions carefully. The first two days are the most uncomfortable, so if you are instructed to take medications at certain times, stay on the schedule. Discomfort typically drops down to a “nagging” level by five to seven days.
– You will likely go back for follow-up with your surgeon within five days. During this visit, your doctor can remove the drains. Swelling should subside within five weeks.
– Call your surgeon immediately if you notice an increase in swelling, pain, redness, drainage, or bleeding in the surgical area, or if you develop fever, dizziness, nausea, or vomiting. Other red flags include shortness of breath, chest pains, and an unusual heartbeat.
– You should be up and walking the day after surgery, although slowly. It is important to walk to discourage swelling and to prevent blood clots in the legs. However, avoid strenuous exercise for four to six weeks, because it can trigger unnecessary fluid retention in the treated areas.
– Plan to take about two weeks off from work, depending on the physical demands of your job.
– Make an effort to ease back into your normal routine gradually rather than all at once.
– Wearing your compression garment as directed reduces the likelihood of loose or sagging skin after an abdominoplasty. The compression garment also helps to control swelling, resulting in a shorter recovery period.
How Long Will My Results Last?
Barring another pregnancy or significant weight gain, your results should be permanent, although plastic surgery will not prevent the effects of normal aging
Limitations And Risks:
All surgical procedures have some degree of risk. Some of the potential complications of all surgeries are:
– Adverse reaction to anesthesia
– Hematoma or seroma (an accumulation of blood or fluid under the skin that may require removal)
– Infection and bleeding
– Changes in sensation
– Allergic reactions
– Damage to underlying structures
– Unsatisfactory results that may necessitate additional procedures