The Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty)
What is a Tummy tuck? How is it Done?
A tummy tuck is the surgical removal of excess skin and fat from the abdomen as well as tightening of the central abdominal wall muscles, or “6 pack” muscles, that are often stretched with pregnancy and/or weight gain.
Our tummy tuck procedures at Peoria Cosmetic Surgery in Peoria Arizona are performed in the sterile environment of our accredited in-office surgical suite. We use deep intravenous sedation, monitored by a skilled CRNA or anesthesiologist to keep you asleep and entirely pain free throughout the procedure. Any excess fat in the anterior abdomen, waist and flanks is removed with liposuction. We incise the skin around your belly button and make horizontal incision extending usually the length of your lower abdomen just above the pubic hairline, low enough to be easily concealed by a bikini. We then lift up skin over your “6-pack” muscles and tighten them to give you a flatter tummy and narrower waistline. Most of the skin from below the belly buttonto that horizontal incision is removed and the skin above is stretched down and sutured tothat horizontal incision. A new hole for the belly button is made through the skin that has been moved downwards, keeping it in its natural position.
Following the surgery, our patients are placed in a specially designed removable compression garment to reduce swelling and bruising in the postoperative period. Thesegarments are sheer and worn under regular clothing for a variable period of time.
What is a “Mini” Tummy Tuck
Some men or women have only a small but still noticeable area of loose abdominal skinhanging below the belly button with no skin laxity above it. They may also have some superficial abdominal fat but normal abdominal muscles. For these patients, we can often remove the fat with liposuction, and excise the excess skin below the belly button directly without lifting up the abdominal skin, moving the belly button or tightening the rectus muscles. This is a “mini” tummy tuck. It involves far less surgery than a full tummy tuck and has a much shorter recovery time.
Who are the Best Candidates for a Tummy Tuck?
The best candidates for a tummy tuck are those in good physical condition with some superficial abdominal fat and considerable loose hanging abdominal skin that is unresponsive to diet and exercise. While there is no age limit for this procedure, we cannot perform this surgery on those who are severely overweight.
Tummy tucks are ideal for women with stretched skin and muscles from pregnancy. Results from the tummy tuck procedure will diminish if women continue to bear children,therefore, we advise those women who plan to become pregnant to postpone this procedure until they are done having children.
We also encourage patients who intend to lose weight to wait until they have lost all the weight they can before undergoing a tummy tuck, as the skin in the abdominal area typically loosens after substantial weight loss.
What We Do to Make the Results of Your Tummy Tuck Better:
- Place the scar as low as possible, so that it will be hidden within your bikini line.
- Liposuction your flanks and upper abdomen or anywhere else to necessary enhance the contours of your torso.
- Tighten your “6-pack” muscles just the right amount to flatten your tummy even more.
- Create a small “innie” belly button in the right location.
- Follow you as frequently as necessary after surgery to ensure a smooth recovery
What is the Recovery Like after a Tummy Tuck?
Recovery time after a tummy tuck ranges anywhere from seven days for a “mini’ tummy tuck procedure to two to three weeks for a full tummy tuck with liposuction. Depending on the extent of the tummy tuck surgery and other factors,the doctor will estimate the time you will need to take off work or school. Most people can go back to light sedentary work in two to three weeks.
In most tummy tucks, post-surgical drains are needed to help remove the excess fluid from under the skin of the abdomen. These are removed from 4-10 days after surgery.Pain following surgery is moderate for the first four days then eases substantially afterwards. Additionally, most patients will walk hunched over for about 5-7 days until the skin and muscles we have tightened relax.
When Can I Resume my Regular Activities?
In general, you will not be allowed to do any heavy lifting or strenuous activities for about 3-6 weeks after surgery while your body heals.
What Complications and Risks are Possible with a Tummy Tuck Surgery?
Though rare, the post-operative complications that can occur from any surgical procedureare possible. These can include infection, fluid accumulation under the skin, blood clots and poor wound healing. Some complications may require further surgery.
Is There Anything Special to Do Before and After Surgery?
Prior to surgery, our patients undergo a preoperative surgical clearance where the doctor performs a careful history and physical examination. Additionally, blood for theappropriate laboratory tests is taken, and the procedure is reviewed in detail. You are measured for your post-operative garment we order for you that you must wear after surgery. Tight but comfortable, it compresses the abdominal skin, reducing pain, swelling and bruising and ensures proper skin remodeling.
What is the Cost of a Tummy Tuck? Is it Covered by Insurance?
Tummy tucks are a cosmetic surgical procedure and therefore are not covered by healthcare insurance. The cost of a tummy tuck is dependent on the individual’s preoperative condition and the amount work needed to improve it: the amount of loose skin to be removed, the degree of laxity in the abdominal muscles and how much liposuction is required. Each patient is different and requires an individualized approach to obtain the best possible results.
Why Choose us to do your Tummy Tuck
The tummy tucks at Peoria Cosmetic Surgery are performed by Dr. Shaili Gal, an experienced and highly trained aesthetic plastic surgeon with additional board certification in general surgery. There are many competent surgeons whom you can choose to do your surgery in the metropolitan Phoenix area, but there are few places that offer exceptional skill, experience, safety, and caring as we do at Peoria Cosmetic Surgery.
What to Do If You are Interested in A Tummy Tuck
If you are interested a tummy tuck, please contact our office by calling 623 876 9494 and schedule a consultation or fill out the form below and we will contact you. During the consultation, the doctor will thoroughly assess your condition, offer you the appropriate procedure and give you an exact quote for the procedure.