Sometimes, liposuction alone is not enough to achieve the desired results for the abdomen, particularly if excess skin is present. If there is a significant amount of skin laxity or weakness of the underlying muscle layer, a patient may undergo an abdominoplasty or tummy tuck.
Suitable candidates for abdominoplasty are adults who are not far from their goal body weight, with an abdominal area that has not responded well to diet and exercise.
Requirements for Abdominoplasty:
An Abdominoplasty is an operation in which a wedge of lower abdominal skin is excised along with the underlying fatty tissue. If the abdominal muscles are weak, they can be tightened at the time of surgery. In some cases, the amount of skin to be removed is large enough to warrant repositioning the navel or “belly button”.
Surgery usually involves a general anaesthetic, but occasionally an epidural anaesthetic supplemented with local anaesthetic may be used.
The operation lasts for approximately two hours. As might be expected, suture lines are often long, but dissolving sutures are used for most of the closure.
A hospital stay is generally advisable. This is due to the procedure leaving the abdomen feeling very tight and, as a result, movement can be uncomfortable for a few days. A hospital environment will help ensure that pain relief is on hand if required.
A support garment, available from Dr Quinn’s rooms, is fitted at the time of surgery and should be worn for the next six weeks. Once at home, activities need to remain restricted for a few weeks. Generally, light activities can recommence four or five days after surgery while driving a car is usually possible after a week or two.
The timing of a return to work depends on the nature of the work to be performed. Office work is usually possible at two weeks after surgery but tasks requiring extended periods of standing or strenuous effort should be left for three or four weeks.
Activities requiring considerable exertion should be avoided for six weeks.
There are risks to be aware of before you go ahead with abdominoplasty. These include poor scarring, anaesthesia reactions, nerve damage, poor or slow healing, bleeding, and infection. Following Dr Quinn’s aftercare instructions will help reduce (but not eliminate) these risks. Any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Find more information here.
Even though a abdominoplasty can remove excess tissue from the abdomen, the procedure will not put a stop to future weight gain.
Yes, many patients get a tattoo to hide their scars. However, if you choose to get a tattoo over your abdominoplasty scar, you should wait until you have completely recovered from surgery. If you have no interested in getting a tattoo, rest assured that your scars will fade in time, and most patients do not feel the need to conceal their marks.
Surgeons advise that you wait to have abdominoplasty surgery if you have plans on getting pregnant in the future; this is because pregnancy can stretch your muscles and skin, reversing the results of the abdominoplasty. Although, if you become pregnant, the procedure will likely not interfere with your baby’s health or cause problems during delivery.
Yes, it is! In fact, because mothers who have had a C-section often struggle with damaged muscles and loose abdominal skin, this procedure can often be an option for these women. However, most doctors recommend that you wait at least six months after the caesarian before you undergo abdominoplasty.
Surgeons will not administer abdominoplasty on any individual under 18. The procedure can be suitable for patients in their 20s. Some surgeons may recommend that patients put off surgery until they are a bit older, especially women who may want children. There is no age that is considered too old for abdominoplasty; however, a full medical exam for senior patients is required.