How Does Abdominal Plastic Surgery Work and Is It Worth It?
Tummy tucks, otherwise known as abdominoplasties, are one of the most popular cosmetic surgeries performed in the United States. Although it has waffled on and off the top five list over the years, it’s still a mainstay.
In this article, we’ll go over some of the facts about abdominal plastic surgery. We’ll discuss who is a candidate, what the surgery entails and the expected recovery time.
While this guide can help you make the best decision for yourself, there are only two people that can make the final call: you and your doctor.
Read on for more information on this wildly popular plastic surgery procedure.
What is Abdominal Plastic Surgery?
Abdominal plastic surgery is referred to by several names. Colloquially, it is often referred to as a “tummy tuck.” Medically, it is often known as an abdominoplasty.
This procedure helps women get rid of excess skin and fat around their middle, as well as tightens the abdominal muscles. If you have stretch marks from pregnancy or gaining a large amount of weight, this procedure can help you get rid of them for good.
It can also pull down the belly button, or reposition it completely.
Who is a Candidate for a Tummy Tuck?
Most people who have tummy tucks are women who have finished having children. While the tummy tuck can help repair the stomach’s aesthetic after being pregnant and giving birth, it can also be useful for men.
A tummy tuck can be used for both sexes to help get rid of excess skin or fat around the belly. Often, this is for individuals who have loose skin from losing a large amount of weight.
If you, for example, had bariatric surgery and lost a large amount of weight, particularly in a small amount of time, you will have excess skin. The unnecessary weight you gained will have stretched out the skin. With the weight loss, the skin has nowhere to go except to sag.
A tummy tuck will remove the unnecessary skin so that your post-weight loss body looks smooth.
It is useful to remember that only a qualified plastic surgeon can tell you if you are a candidate for the surgery.
How is a Tummy Tuck Different from Liposuction?
If you’re considering getting excess fat removed from your midsection, you may be wondering if there is a difference between a tummy tuck and liposuction.
Liposuction is a procedure that helps remove some of the fat from your midsection (and other areas of the body) and reshape it. It is for those who have a hard time losing weight in specific areas. Liposuction, however, will not remove large amounts of fat, nor will it correct excess skin or stretch marks.
What About Laser Liposuction?
Laser liposuction is performed without anesthesia and is not, in essence, a surgical procedure. During laser liposuction, you’ll have the area numbed and your surgeon will make a small incision near the area you wish to have fat removed from. Your surgeon will then insert a very small laser that makes the fat melt away, before sucking it out with a small tube.
Laser liposuction not only helps reduce the appearance of fat but can also leave skin looking firmer and more youthful because it encourages your skin to create collagen.
This procedure is perfect for someone who wishes to have some of their fat melted away, but not a complete reconstruction of their stomach or “love handles.” It is also minimally invasive and allows for a very short recovery time, making it perfect for those who can’t wait for six weeks for the healing process.
How is the Abdominoplasty Procedure Performed?
There are typically three ways the procedure is performed. In all scenarios, your surgeon will put you under general anesthesia. The surgery can last anywhere from two to six hours, depending on the type of surgery your plastic surgeon is performing.
The shorter type of surgery, involves the surgeon making a large incision across the lower stomach, just above the pubic area. The surgeon will separate the skin from the abdominal wall and remove excess fat and skin. The surgeon may also be sure to remove certain scars or stretch marks in the area.
Once finished, the surgeon will then stitch up the skin they have left and you’ll be placed in recovery. You can expect to be in the hospital from one to three days, though a mini-tummy tuck usually requires a shorter amount of time in the hospital.
A more extensive abdominoplasty involves the same type of initial incision, just above the pubic area. However, in this type of surgery, the belly button is often also pulled away from your body with a second incision.
The surgeon will then proceed to remove the skin from the abdominal wall, just like in the standard tummy tuck. The abdominal muscles will be realigned, and in some cases, can be tightened. This can also help with incontinence and help with back pain by making the abdominal muscles stronger.
After this, the surgeon will remove excess fat and skin, just like with the mini-tummy tuck. The surgeon will also be careful to ensure they remove scars or stretch marks the patient requested.
A new belly button is often formed during this procedure, and the entire tummy tuck will then be sutured into place.
This procedure will usually take much longer than the mini-tummy tuck and can last as long as 6 hours. You can expect to also be in the hospital for a longer period of time after this surgery, as your recovery will be longer.
An extended abdominoplasty is reserved for individuals for who either lost a large amount of weight or who have had twins or triplets. The surgery involves repairing a larger area than just the full or standard abdominoplasty and may extend to the “love handle” area as well.
Is the Procedure Worth It?
Abdominal plastic surgery is worth it for anyone who wishes to gain the confidence they lack because of excess skin or fat. Although it takes six weeks after the surgery to fully recover and see the results, it can help you feel more comfortable in your skin. For many people, this confidence and peace of mind you’ll gain are priceless.
If you’re interested in seeing if you’re a candidate for the procedure, give our clinic a call. We are conveniently located for patients in Frisco, Plano, and Dallas to access our facilities. We can help you achieve the body, and confidence, you deserve.
You can even TEXT text our helpful staff at (214-809-8599)
Or call our office to schedule your free consultation at (972-612-1900)