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Frequently Asked Questions: Tummy Tuck

What are the different types of tummy tuck procedures?

Classic abdominoplasty (standard tummy tuck/full tummy tuck) is the correction of weakened abdominal muscles and excess skin in the midsection. It is ideal for people who want to be flattened in the area above and below the belly button.

Modified abdominoplasty (mini tummy tuck) flattens out a bulge in the lower abdomen by treating a smaller area of tissue between the pubis and the belly button, and usually liposuction is used as well.

An extended abdominoplasty is a more extensive version of the abdominoplasty that helps address the excess skin in the tummy, hips, and lower back. This is also called a belt lipectomy or body lift.

Is a tummy tuck safe?

The decision to have plastic surgery is extremely personal, and you will have to decide if the benefits will achieve your goals and if the risks and potential complications of a tummy tuck are acceptable.

What are the risks and side effects of a tummy tuck?

Tummy tuck risk includes anesthesia risks, bleeding or infection, fluid accumulation, poor wound healing, skin loss, numbness or other changes in skin sensation, skin discoloration, prolonged swelling, unfavorable scarring, recurrent looseness of the skin, fat necrosis, deep vein thrombosis, cardiac and pulmonary results, revisional surgery and persistent pain.

What is the difference between a Tummy tuck and Liposuction?

A tummy tuck removes excess skin and fat, and restores weakened or separated muscle creating an abdominal profile that is smoother and firmer.

Liposuction technique by removing excess fat deposits and improving your body contours and proportions used to reduce localized fat deposits with no skin excision. If you have lots of excess skin, then liposuction will probably not improve your appearance by itself.

How long is the Recovery Period for Full Tummy Tuck?

Depending on how physically demanding your job is, you may be ready to return to work in 2 to 4 weeks.

Does a tummy tuck leave scars?

Yes. A full tummy tuck requires a horizontally-oriented incision in the area between the pubic hairline and navel. The shape and length of the incision will be determined by the degree of correction necessary. A second scar may be necessary around the navel to remove excess skin in the upper abdomen.

Can I get pregnant after a tummy tuck?

Tummy tucks usually do not interfere with future pregnancies. But tummy tucks are extensive procedures and should not be taken lightly. They can also be expensive. Most patients will finish with childbearing before going through an abdominoplasty/tummy tuck. If you did become pregnant following your tummy tuck, you would more than likely be back for a re-do/tummy tuck.

Are tummy tuck results permanent?

Although the results of a tummy tuck can last a long time, the positive outcome can be greatly diminished by significant fluctuations in your weight.

Can a Tummy Tuck remove stretch marks?

A tummy tuck cannot correct stretch marks, although these may be removed or somewhat improved if they are located on the areas of excess skin that will be excised.

Can Tummy Tuck improve the appearance of the belly button?

Yes, an incision is made around the belly button to allow tightening of the excess skin in the upper abdomen and leaving the midsection flatter and better toned. This will result in an improved belly button appearance.

Can I tighten loose abdominal skin without surgery?

If you are a candidate, surgery is the only option to remove excess skin. Diet and exercise will improve and tighten the abdominal muscle and reduce abdomen fat, but, to get a flat abdomen, you would need to get the excision of excess skin and fat to get the result you desire.

How Will Weight Gain After Tummy Tuck Affect Results?

Future pregnancies or weight gain can negatively affect your results, causing muscles or skin to stretch back out and become lax after returning to your normal weight.

Can I exercise after tummy tuck surgery?

Patients are advised to follow their doctor’s recommendations. However, six weeks after abdominoplasty is an adequate time for many cardiovascular types of exercise. Running, elliptical trainer, treadmill, and speed walking are excellent forms of aerobic exercise. Weight lifting can put a strain on incision and sutures, so it is recommended to begin lifting slowly around the six-week mark.

What is the best scar treatment after a full Tummy Tuck?

Patients are recommended to use what their doctor prefers. Some recommend scar gels or silicone sheeting to speed up the healing of the scar.

How to reduce swelling after a tummy tuck?

In time, all swelling will improve as normal healing occurs. Compression garments may allow for faster swelling reduction.  Ask our doctor what garments they recommend.

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