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Tummy Tuck

One of the most rewarding procedures,

abdominoplasty, or tummy tuck, can give the patient something they cannot achieve through even the most rigorous exercise and diet program- a flat tummy. Whether a result of pregnancy or weight gain and loss, the strain placed on the abdominal muscles as well as the skin can be reversed with this procedure. The best candidates for an abdominoplasty, or tummy tuck, are patients who have loose skin and muscles as well as excess fat as a result of pregnancy or weight gain and loss.

Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty) FAQ

Q: What is a tummy tuck?

A: A tummy tuck is a surgical procedure that removes excess skin from the lower belly and tightens the rectus muscles. These may become loose with pregnancy or weight gain and weight loss. The surgery is different than liposuction in that it addresses the loose skin as well as the loose muscles (diastasis).

Q: What is the normal age to have a tummy tuck performed?

A: There is no “normal” age for tummy tuck surgery. The key factors that decide if someone is a candidate is whether they have excess loose skin or muscle weakness and if they are medically and emotionally ready to have the surgery.

Q: How do I know if I am a candidate for a tummy tuck or liposuction?

A: Liposuction is a procedure used to treat excess fat deposits. A patient who is a good candidate for liposuction should have good skin tone with no loose skin. If performing liposuction on a patient with loose skin this may make the skin appear looser after the surgery. Also, liposuction does not address the muscle separation (i.e. diastasis) and so if this is an issue the patient would be a better tummy tuck, or abdominoplasty, candidate.

Q: What is the difference between a full tummy tuck and a mini tummy tuck?

A: A full tummy tuck involves lifting the skin all the way up to the rib cage, tightening the muscles from the rib cage down to the pubic bone, removing the excess skin and then bringing the belly button out through the skin. A mini tummy tuck involves lifting the skin only up to the belly button, tightening the lower half of the muscles and removing the skin. No incision is made around the belly button. The candidate for a mini tummy tuck only has fullness below the belly button whereas a candidate for a full tummy tuck has fullness and skin laxity below and above the belly button.

Q: How is a tummy tuck performed?

A: Tummy tuck, or abdominoplasty, is typically an outpatient surgical procedure performed under general anesthesia. A low incision is made and the skin and fat is lifted off of the muscle up to the bellybutton. At this point, an incision is made around the bellybutton and dissection is continued up to the rib cage. The rectus muscles (which are the six pack muscles) are then sutured together. The patient is then placed at a 30-45 degree angle and the excess skin and fat is removed. An incision is made and the bellybutton is brought out and sutured in place. Drainage tubes are typically placed under the skin. The skin incision is then closed in multiple layers. The incision is typically several inches above the pubic bone and extends in a gentle curve from hip to hip. The incision is usually easy to hide in a bikini bottom or underwear.

Q: Can liposuction of the belly be performed at the same time as a tummy tuck?

A: Liposuction can be performed of the flanks or waist but it is not recommended to have liposuction of the central belly, especially the area above the belly button. The reason for this is that this area is providing the blood supply to the incision and liposuction and compromise the blood supply leading to wound healing issues and even worse, skin loss in the center of the lower belly between the incision and the belly button.

I met Dr. Dadvand 4 years ago but couldn’t have my breast augmentation and tummy tuck at that time. However fast forward to today and I’m 2 months post op and am so extremely happy with my breast aug.w/ lift. He gave me detailed information on what he felt would look best on me in addition to listening to what I wanted had a lot of questions and he answered them all. Read more.

I wanted to thank you so much for your kindness and help. You possess a wonderful calming manner in the way you treat patients. It can be said perhaps that there are gifted doctors out there-but what sets you and the entire office apart is your compassion. Look forward to seeing you soon. Read more.

Thank You, Dr. Dadvand! Dr. Dadvand truly cares about the patient and their happiness. He makes recommendations and gives you the reasoning behind these recommendations, so you are very aware of what to expect. I could not ask of anything better than that during an interaction with someone to whom I am trusting my body. Read more.

I would like to congratulate you on the superb job that you did with my tummy tuck, breast lift, and liposuction. I was very nervous going into the surgery, however my concern was for nothing as the care that I received was very professional and thorough. I appreciate the time that you took before the surgery to discuss what exactly I was looking for. Read more.

Q: What should I expect post-operatively?

A: After your tummy tuck, dressings and a light compression garment will be placed. This procedure is associated with moderate pain and so it will be important to take pain medications as prescribed. You should avoid standing straight for the first week in order to reduce tension on the incision. Also, for the first week, you should sleep with several pillows behind your back and knees to take tension off of the incision. You may shower starting 2 days after the surgery but do not submerge your incision under water. You will follow up with on the day after surgery and then at one week for suture removal. The drains will be removed when they are putting out less than 30cc/day. This usually takes 7-10 days.

Q: How long is recovery after a tummy tuck?

A: Most people take two weeks off from work after a tummy tuck, or abdominoplasty. There is swelling associated with this procedure. The swelling gradually goes down and avoiding strenuous activity and heavy lifting will help reduce the swelling faster. Typically it will take several months to really start seeing the final results but the difference is obvious immediately. The incision will take up to one and a half years to reach its final color. It is recommended to avoid exercise for 4-6 weeks after your surgery.

Q: Are the results of a tummy tuck surgery permanent?

A: The results of tummy tuck surgery, although not permanent, do last for years. How long the results last depend on whether the patient gains weight in the future, whether the patient gets pregnant in the future, as well as how well the skin tone stands up to time. That being said, this is one of the most impacting surgeries on a patient’s body and has one of the highest satisfaction rates of any plastic surgery performed.

Q: What are the risks of tummy tucks?

A: The risks of tummy tuck surgery, or abdominoplasty, include bleeding, infection, fluid collection (seroma), healing problems, poor scarring, numbness in the lower abdomen, as well as more general risks such as blood clot and anesthesia complications. A tummy tuck should only be performed after full medical clearance and blood work that is within normal limits. Smokers need to stop smoking 4 weeks before and 4 weeks after the procedure. Walking is encouraged starting the evening of surgery.

Contact the office of Dr. Babak Dadvand, where his friendly and courteous staff will schedule a consultation for you.

Dr. Dadvand

By Dr. Babak Dadvand

Dr. Babak Dadvand is a double board-certified plastic surgeon and portrait painter, providing a distinctive fusion of artistic and surgical skills to achieve exceptional outcomes, all while maintaining a robust ethical framework that prioritizes patient trust and satisfaction.

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