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Abdominoplasty (Tummy Tuck)

A flat and well-toned abdomen is something that many of us strive for through exercise and diet.  Unfortunately, even our best efforts often leave a stomach that protrudes or is loose and sagging.  Trying on clothes becomes a hassle and nothing fits or seems to look right.  It can take an emotional toll on your self-esteem and even prevent you from going places because you have “nothing to wear.”  Having body issues can literally prevent you from truly getting the most pleasure and enjoyment out of your life.

 

An Abdominoplasty, also known as a “tummy tuck,” is a surgical procedure that removes excess skin and/or fat, and in most cases, restores weakened or separated muscles that cause the stomach to extend out.  Life may present the most common contributors such as significant fluctuations in weight, pregnancy, aging or simply heredity; however, the result of a tummy tuck can create an abdominal profile that is smoother and firmer leaving you to look and feel your best.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Is a Tummy Tuck after massive weight loss right for me?

    A tummy tuck is not a substitution for weight loss or an appropriate exercise program.  Although the results of a tummy tuck are technically permanent, significant fluctuations in your weight can significantly diminish the positive results.  If you are planning substantial weight loss or if you are a woman considering future pregnancies, you may be advised to postpone a tummy tuck.  As with all cosmetic surgeries, this is a very personal decision and you should only do it for yourself, not to fulfill someone else’s desires or to try to fit any sort of ideal image.

     

    Good candidates are:

    • Healthy individuals who do not have a life-threatening illness or medical conditions that can impair healing
    • Individuals who are physically healthy and at a stable weight
    • Non-smokers
    • Individuals with a positive outlook and specific yet realistic goals in mind for abdominoplasty
  • Where are the incisions made during a Tummy Tuck?

    A full tummy tuck requires a horizontally-oriented incision in the area between the pubic hairline and navel.  Dr. Vartany takes extra care in positioning the incision just below the bikini line to make the healed incision less visible.  The length and shape of the incision will be determined by the degree of correction necessary.  Through this incision, Dr. Vartany will repair weakened abdominal muscles and remove excess fat tissue and skin.  A second incision around the navel may be necessary to maximize removal of the excess skin in the upper abdomen.

     

    A modified, or mini-tummy tuck, also requires a horizontally-oriented incision in the area between the pubic hairline and navel.  This incision is typically shorter in length than the full abdominoplasty incision and does not include an incision around the navel.  Only the skin between the navel and pubic hairline is pulled down and excised.  The abdominal muscles are not tightened during this modified procedure; therefore, it is only the ideal procedure for someone with the stubborn “pooch”.  A full tummy tuck is the recommended procedure to optimize your results for flattening and contouring your abdomen.

  • What may I expect during my personalized consultation

  • How will I prepare for my body contouring procedure?

  • Are there additional instructions pertaining to my Tummy Tuck?

    You will need to discontinue the use of Birth Control pills for two weeks prior to surgery.  You may resume taking your Birth Control one week after surgery.

  • What may I expect during my recovery?

  • Are there additional instructions for my body contouring recovery?

    Your surgical drains will need to be emptied twice daily.  A form will be provided for you to log the amount of fluid being drained from each side, both morning and night.  Your drains will be removed, in the office, once the fluid output goes down.  This is generally 6-10 days after surgery.

     

    You may not shower while your drains are in place.

     

    You will be provided with an abdominal girdle.  Your girdle should be worn for six weeks after surgery.  Once your drains have been removed, you may remove your girdle just long enough to shower and wash your garment.

    You may not sleep on your stomach, or attempt to for 4-6 weeks after surgery.

     

    You may not drive a car until you are given permission to do so.  This is generally after all meds have been discontinued and your drains have been removed.  Dr. Vartany will assess you at each post-operative appointment and instruct you on your current restrictions.

     

    Avoid getting overheated, sunbathing, exercise and/or any strenuous activity that could potentially elevate your heart rate or blood pressure for 4 weeks after surgery.

     

    Dr. Vartany uses dissolvable sutures.  A running steri-strip will cover the incision and will typically come off on its own.  Do not attempt to remove or peel off the steri-strip.

     

    Complete resolution of your swelling may take up to 6 months.

  • Additional Procedures for Further Enhancement

  • Important Facts about the Safety and Risks of a Tummy Tuck after weight loss

    Dr. Vartany will explain, in detail, the risks associated with Abdominoplasty.  You will be asked to sign a consent form to ensure that you fully understand potential risks and complications.

    • Unfavorable scarring
    • Bleeding (hematoma)
    • Infection
    • Fluid accumulation
    • Poor wound healing
    • Skin loss
    • Blood clots
    • Numbness or other changes in skin sensation
    • Anesthesia risks
    • Skin discoloration and/or prolonged swelling
    • Fatty tissue found deep in the skin might die (fat necrosis)
    • Major wound separation
    • Asymmetry
    • Recurrent looseness of skin
    • Pain, which may persist Deep vein thrombosis, cardiac and pulmonary complications
    • Persistent swelling in the legs
    • Nerve damage
    • Possibility of revision surgery
    • Suboptimal aesthetic result
American Society of Plastic Surgery American Board of Plastic Surgery