Flatten Your Abdomen with a Tummy Tuck
Most men and women desire a flat, toned tummy. Unfortunately, this physical trait can be hard to come by, especially for women who have been pregnant and people who have lost excessive amounts of weight. Aging and genetics can also play a role in your tummy contour. If you have been struggling with sculpting your abdomen, despite living a healthy lifestyle, a tummy tuck (abdominoplasty) procedure might be the answer.
Dr. Anne Nickodem performs this procedure to remove excess fat and skin from the abdominal area as well as to tighten weak abdominal muscles.
Reasons for Tummy Tucks
- Droopy abdominal skin
- Weak abdominal muscles
- Excess abdominal fat
- Tummy pooch
What to Expect with Tummy Tucks
During tummy tuck surgery, an incision is made to lift the abdominal skin, repair the underlying muscles, remove excess fat, trim off the excess skin and pull the skin tighter. The belly button may need to be repositioned if a large amount of skin is removed. The incision is closed using sutures or other adhesives.
Depending on your trouble areas, there are varying degrees of surgery that can be performed:
- Traditional (Full) Tummy Tuck: an incision is made along the bikini line from hipbone to hipbone to remove excess fat and skin from the entire abdominal area; the belly button may need to be repositioned
- Mini/Modified/Partial Tummy Tuck: removal of excess fat and skin from below the belly button through a smaller incision; the belly button position remains the same
- Circumferential Tummy Tuck: removal of the surplus of skin that can result from massive weight loss as well as the tightening of abdominal muscles
Liposuction may also be used in conjunction with tummy tucks to achieve the desired appearance.
Tummy Tuck Recovery
Your recovery after a tummy tuck will depend on how extensive your surgery was and your own unique healing ability. On average, you should expect to recover several weeks at home and limit any strenuous activities for 6 weeks. During this time you will be instructed to wear a compression garment to minimize swelling. Dr. Nickodem may place drainage tubes under the skin to drain any excess fluids from the area.
Following Dr. Nickodem’s post-op instructions will help to minimize the risk of complications.
Potential Risks of Tummy Tucks
- Fluid collection under the skin (seroma)
- Blood collection under the skin (hematoma)
- Blood clots in the legs that can move to the lungs (pulmonary embolus)
- Damage to nerves, resulting in sensation changes
- Persistent pain
- Changes in skin color
- Anesthesia risks
Reasons to Postpone Tummy Tuck Surgery
There are certain situations when it may be advisable to postpone a tummy tuck surgery:
- You plan to lose significant amounts of weight in the future
- You view the surgery as a weight loss solution
- If a woman, you plan to become pregnant in the future (stretching your abdomen again may actually undo the work)
- A bikini line scar is unacceptable
- You cannot stop smoking prior to and after surgery (this can delay healing and increase the risk of complications)
- You are extremely active and will find it impossible to limit strenuous activities during the healing process
- You have unrealistic expectations about the outcome of the surgery
- You believe that you can never regain weight after a tummy tuck
- You want to have the surgery to please another person
- You have a serious medical condition that may interfere with healing
If you are unhappy with your abdomen’s contour, contact us today to schedule a Cosmetic Consultation and find out if a tummy tuck in Annadale, VA, is right for you.