Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty)
The tummy tuck is a procedure designed to remove excess fat and sagging skin around the stomach to produce a thinner torso.
Losing a significant amount of weight or giving birth can cause your stomach region to have excess loose skin, fat deposits, and weakened abdominal muscles. These symptoms are difficult to correct through diet and exercise alone. A tummy tuck can address the definition of your stomach by reducing the fat in this area, removing excess skin, and pulling the muscles closer together. The remaining skin is then pulled taut and smoothed out to provide thinner, tighter abs.
Is a Tummy Tuck Right for Me?
Robert I. Oliver, Jr., M.D. and Jason M. Jack, M.D., located in Birmingham, Alabama, offer tummy tuck surgery at their practice, Plastic Surgery Specialists. Providing patients with personalized care and close attention to detail, our plastic surgeons and caring staff welcome those interested in this body contouring procedure. We are devoted to rejuvenating and enhancing your natural beauty using state-of-the-art procedures.
Excess Sagging Skin
Stubborn Fatty Tissue
Stretched Abdominal Muscles
What Does a Tummy Tuck Entail?
Anesthesia and Incisions
Abdominoplasty surgery usually lasts between two and three hours, depending on the desired look and the patient’s unique physiology. To begin the procedure, anesthesia medication is administered, and an incision is made just above the pubic bone area. This incision extends horizontally across the lower abdomen towards the hip bones. The extent of correction will determine how long the incision needs to be.
Fat and Skin Removal
The skin on the midsection is stretched away from the muscle tissue, and excess skin is excised. Abdominal muscle tissues are tightened to provide a firmly contoured stomach and a more defined waistline. Remaining excess skin is removed, and, in some cases, an additional incision is made around the navel to create a new opening for the belly button. This process achieves a flatter, more toned appearance.
Some tummy tuck procedures also include liposuction, which injects a sterile solution known as a tumescent fluid into the targeted locations. By utilizing the tumescent method, the blood vessels are constricted, and blood loss is minimized, helping reduce swelling. In some circumstances, power-assisted liposuction is used, which has a moving device that gently breaks up the fatty tissue and suctions it out.
Lastly, the incisions are closed, and the skin is stitched back into place. The abdominal area may be wrapped with surgical gauze or a support garment to promote healing.
Before & After
Addressing Your Concerns
Patients are provided detailed postoperative care instructions, which include what to do and what activities to avoid during your recuperation. No heavy lifting or strenuous activities should be attempted for the first few weeks to help speed up the healing process. As your body recovers, you can expect minor swelling, bruising, and overall discomfort. Your stitches are removed shortly after the surgery, depending on the procedures involved.
Absorbable sutures are used whenever possible to help minimize suture removal. Usually, one or two drainage tubes are placed during surgery and are typically removed early in the postoperative recovery process. Normal activities can generally be resumed within two weeks. It may take up to a year for the body to completely adapt to the new abdominal configuration. With proper diet and exercise, the striking results of your surgery can be long-lasting.
Scarring occurs after any incision, and your surgeon takes special care to make inconspicuous incisions whenever possible. The resulting scars are usually around the bikini line and can be concealed with underwear or a swimsuit. Most scars fade over time and become a light-colored thin line.
Every tummy tuck procedure is slightly different depending on which techniques are utilized and if any other procedures are combined with the operation. Different methods will incur a different cost. Dr. Oliver will discuss these details during your consultation and provide a price estimate.
Any discomfort experienced during your recovery can be relieved by taking prescription medication. Most patients feel better a few days after their tummy tuck.
Frequently Asked Questions
Am I a good candidate for a tummy tuck?
If you have loose skin after pregnancy or weight fluctuations, then tummy tuck surgery may benefit you. An evaluation and discussion with Dr. Oliver will help to determine if a tummy tuck is right for you.
Can I combine my tummy tuck with other procedures?
Some Birmingham, Anniston, and Tuscaloosa patients decide to combine a tummy tuck with other body-enhancing procedures, such as breast augmentation or a complete Mommy Makeover, to streamline their physique. Please discuss your cosmetic goals and preferences with your surgeon during your initial consultation to see if combining procedures can help you achieve your desired results.
What is the expected outcome?
Tummy tuck surgery is designed to achieve a slimmer, more defined abdominal region with less localized body fat. The stomach is strategically targeted to produce the desired results.
How long do the results last?
Patients who adopt a healthy lifestyle can see long-lasting results. The fat and skin removed during the procedure are permanently gone, but new fat cells can affect your outcome if you gain weight after your surgery.