People who have lost a lot of weight or have been pregnant can have excess or sagging skin of their abdomen. Over time, even people at their normal weight can develop sagging skin. Diet and exercise often helps with extra fat, but that extra “roll” often just will not go away! A tummy tuck is a good option for many with this problem!
What is a tummy tuck?
A tummy tuck, also known as an abdominoplasty, is a cosmetic surgical procedure that removes excess skin and fat from the abdomen, giving the patient a flatter abdomen and a better figure. (Often, muscles are tightened as well.) However, it is important to note that a tummy tuck is not a substitute for weight loss.
Am I a good candidate for a tummy tuck?
If you are bothered by the appearance of bulges or loose skin in your abdominal area, abdominoplasty may be right for you. A good candidate is someone who has realistic expectations about the results of the procedure, is in good overall health, understands that a tummy tuck is not a weight loss substitute, and who is prepared to exercise and follow a healthy diet after surgery in order to maintain the results.
Where is the surgery performed?
Board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Gary Price performs tummy tucks with intravenous sedation, removing the need for general anesthesia and hospitalization. Dr. Price performs the surgery in his private, fully-licensed operating room.
What is a full tummy tuck?
In a full tummy tuck, skin and muscle from the chest region to the pubic area are tightened. A long incision is made across the lower abdomen. A second incision is made around the belly button. The belly button is repositioned after the skin and muscles are tightened.
A full tummy tuck is most effective for women who have been through pregnancy or have experienced large weight loss. Recovery from a full tummy tuck usually takes two to four weeks.
What is a mini tummy tuck?
The skin of the lower abdomen is tightened in a mini tummy tuck. Relocation of the belly button is not required in this procedure. The scar is shorter and recovery is quicker than with a full tummy tuck. As with a full tummy tuck, liposuction is often done in conjunction with a mini tummy tuck in order to add to further enhance the result.
What is an endoscopic-assisted tummy tuck?
An endoscopic-assisted tummy tuck is a minimally-invasive procedure that Dr. Price performs using an endoscope, a tiny camera that is inserted through small incisions. This procedure involves minimal scarring and a shorter recovery period. It is perfect for individuals who have excess fat in the abdomen and weak lower abdominal muscles, yet still have fairly tight abdominal skin.
How much pain can I expect after the procedure?
Everyone’s pain tolerance is different; the amount of pain with an abdominoplasty is, therefore, variable. Some people report a moderate amount of discomfort and some say it is intense. But, because a tummy tuck is major surgery, there will be some pain. Dr. Price wants you to have a successful experience during and after surgery. At your initial consultation, remember to discuss your pain concerns with him and tell him of any other medications you are taking.
What are the risks?
The decision to have a tummy tuck should only be made after careful evaluation of your expectations and goals following a consultation with a board-certified plastic surgeon such as Dr. Price. Like any other procedure, there are risks involved in a tummy tuck, including bleeding, infection, poor wound healing, unfavorable scarring, numbness, skin discoloration, prolonged swelling, fluid accumulation, and the possibility of revisional surgery.
What to expect during the recovery process
Full tummy tuck patients will usually need ten days to two full weeks off from work. If muscle tightening has been done, then exercise, lifting and pushing are limited for six full weeks. Tummy tuck patients usually need pain medication for several days at a minimum, and sometimes as long as two weeks.
At what age can a tummy tuck be performed?
There is no normal age or time in one’s life to have an abdominoplasty. Many are performed in a patient’s 20s and as late as a their 60s. It is most often done after a woman has given birth and does not plan to have more children, or after someone has lost all the weight that he or she intends to lose. Most cosmetic procedures are not recommended for those under the age of 18. The overall health of the patient is of upmost concern. All patients should undergo a physical exam, a set of lab test and an EKG if they are over the age of 45.
Will a tummy tuck help my stretch marks?
A tummy tuck cannot correct stretch marks, but they may be improved or removed if they are located on the areas of excess skin that will be removed – the “zone of resection.” Dr. Price will draw an estimated zone of resection so that you will have an idea of how many of your stretch marks will remain after your procedure.
How long do the results last?
The results can last for many years. If you have no large weight gain or pregnancies after your tummy tuck, then the positive changes from your tummy tuck will be relatively permanent. There will be some relaxation of the tissues with age, but not to the extent prior to your surgery.
Can a tummy tuck be combined with other procedures?
It is common and possible to combine multiple plastic surgery procedures. However, it depends on the patient and the procedures. Some considerations are the length of the surgery and the patient’s overall health. In some cases, it’s possible to combine a tummy tuck, liposuction and breast augmentation without any problems. These particular procedures are often combined and are given the nickname “Mommy Makeover.”
Schedule a consultation
If you are interested in a tummy tuck and would like to see if you are a good candidate, contact our office at (203) 453-6635 to schedule a consultation with Connecticut Plastic Surgeon, Dr. Gary Price.