Tummy tuck (abdominoplasty) is a common surgery for men and women who are seeking a more toned abdomen. Exercise and diet can only take your body so far. This is where body contouring, like an abdominoplasty, can help you reach your ideal body goals.
- Who Benefits from a Tummy Tuck?
- Types of Tummy Tucks
- Preparing for Abdominoplasty
- Tummy Tuck Recovery
- Call Dr. Anglechik Today
Who Benefits from a Tummy Tuck?
The best tummy tuck candidates have loose, drooping skin in the midsection. While some fat tissue can be removed, the tummy tuck procedure is not itself a substitute for weight loss. In some cases, a tummy tuck may be combined with liposuction if warranted. A tummy tuck with address issues, such as:
- Loose skin
- Excess skin
- Excess fat
- Unattractive protrusions
- Poorly defined muscles
- Stretch marks
The major focus for the tummy tuck is stretched skin in the abdomen. Pregnancy, aging, and major weight loss can all stretch the skin of the abdomen beyond its ability to re-contract. This is where a tummy tuck can make a dramatic difference for our patients.
The best tummy tuck candidates know what they want from the procedure and have realistic expectations. While Dr. Angelchik evaluates each case on its own merits, some common considerations include the following.
- Are you in good overall health?
- Can your body recover from the procedure without elevated risks of complications?
- Are your expectations concrete and realistic? A tummy tuck can deliver outstanding results, but you need to understand what is and is not possible with this surgical procedure.
- Are you close to your ideal weight? The best candidates for tummy tuck have achieved a healthy weight through diet and exercise. If you expect to gain or lose weight after your procedure, your results are likely to change.
A tummy tuck can dramatically improve your appearance and restore your self confidence, but asking the right questions ahead of time ensure that it’s the right procedure for you. To learn more about your tummy tuck options, please contact contact Scottsdale plastic surgeon Paul Angelchik, MD, today at 602-375-8888.
Types of Tummy Tucks
There are several forms of abdominoplasty. Which tummy tuck is right for you will depend on your health and desired results. After your initial consultation, Dr. Angelchik will recommend one of these variations:
Standard Tummy Tuck
The standard tummy tuck is a surgical procedure that removes excess skin from your abdomen. This original variation tightens lax abdominal muscles within the abdominal wall. During surgery, Dr. Angelchik will also remove extra fat tissue. Tummy tucks are best for men and women who have tried diet and exercise, but had difficulty reaching their ideal goal.
A full abdominoplasty addresses a larger area than the mini-tummy tuck, but it usually requires a longer recovery period and may feature more scarring than the miniature version. This procedure uses a hipbone to hipbone abdominal incision that can contour the skin, muscle, and tissue as needed. This procedure can involve moving your belly button, which may lengthen the recovery process.
Mini Tummy Tuck
The mini tummy tuck is sometimes referred to as the Brazilian tummy tuck. It focuses on fat tissue and surplus skin located under your navel. This procedure does not require moving your belly button, and can be completed in one or two hours, depending on your individual health.
The mini abdominoplasty can be used to eliminate small rolls of displaced muscle, fat and skin. It tightens your abdominal wall and muscles, but on a smaller scale than the traditional abdominoplasty. This procedure is the least invasive tummy tuck option and often produces a less noticeable scar. This scar is located around your bikini line. The mini tummy tuck is good for those who have stubborn fatty areas along their lower abdomen.
Extended Tummy Tuck
An extended abdominoplasty still surgically firms underlying abdominal muscles, but is more invasive. Your sides and flanks will also be strengthened. The flanks are often referred to as "love handles." Love handles are one of the hardest areas of the body to correct with just diet and exercise. The extended tummy tuck covers the entire abdomen and surrounding areas. The result could be the swimsuit stomach you've been longing for.
Dr. Angelchik is the only plastic surgeon who performs the Saldanha Lipoabdominoplasty in the Glendale area. This extensive plastic surgery procedure was first developed by Dr. Osvaldo Saldanha. Lipoabdominoplasty involves both liposuction and an abdominoplasty. This combination gives you the maximum amount of body sculpting.
The Saldanha method has shown to be more successful because it maintains more than triple the percentage of blood flow in the skin than the traditional combination. Post-surgery complications are less common and there is a lower probability of severe pain, bruising and swelling in patients. The Saldanha Lipoabdominoplasty is popular among men and women because of the aggressive body sculpting and muscle contouring involved.
Different Tummy Tucks for Different Situations
Women who have been pregnant sometimes experience a condition called diastasis recti, in which the left and right sides of the abdominal muscles become separated. A tummy tuck can repair this condition through careful stitching of the two sides.
Men also come to Dr. Angelchik quite regularly for male tummy tuck procedures. Men often face many of the same kinds of cosmetic challenges as women.
Preparing for Abdominoplasty
When you meet with Dr. Angelchik, you will be asked for a complete medical history including past surgeries, medical conditions, pregnancies, and allergies. Remember to disclose all herbal supplements or vitamins you are taking. Supplements like Omega-3 Fatty Acids, Vitamin E, and green tea can heighten your risk of complications during and after surgery. Some of your medications or vitamins could cause a problem during surgery, and you might be asked to discontinue them for one month prior and one month after your abdominoplasty.
Dr. Angelchik will inspect your abdominal muscle and skin elasticity during your initial appointment, and could require you to have routine blood work and cardio testing done. He will also take a before picture to add to his before and after gallery. Dr. Angelchik will give you detailed instructions on how to prepare for your tummy tuck.
A typical tummy tuck can be performed on an outpatient. For any type of outpatient procedure, you should arrange for someone who can drive you to and from surgery and be available to stay with you on the first night after your procedure.
Tummy Tuck Recovery
Your hospital stay will depend on the extent of your surgery. If you've undergone a mini-tummy tuck you could be able to leave the hospital on the same day. Major forms of abdominoplasty will require a hospital stay of 1-2 nights to ensure you begin healing correctly. You will most likely feel groggy from the general anesthesia.
Recovery time after a tummy tuck varies from patient to patient based on factors like age, health and the extent of the procedure. Our Scottsdale plastic surgeon will advise you on exactly what to expect following your procedure, but common next steps include:
- Prescription medication to alleviate discomfort, muscle relaxants and possibly an antibiotic to prevent infection
- The insertion of a small tube beneath the skin to drain excess fluid
- Dressing the portion of the abdomen your plastic surgeon operated on with bandages. Wearing a tight post-operative garment will help the skin adjust to its new, leaner shape.
- Sutures could be used to close the incisions. These will be removed one to two weeks after the procedure.
You’ll be sent home with drains in place to reduce the buildup of fluid within the treated area. There will be significant bruising and swelling for at least ten days. Residual bruising could last for several months. Tummy tucks come with risks like all forms of surgery, but many of these complications can be avoided by following your aftercare instructions. You’ll also wear a tight-fitting garment for about two weeks, which holds your skin, muscle, and other tissues in place while they heal.
About two weeks total is needed for recovery from the full tummy tuck procedure. You can plan to return to work within about 7-10 days if you have a sedentary desk job, or about 14 days if your job requires physical activity. Many patients who have desk jobs are now able to plan ahead with their employer and work remotely using a laptop at home, letting you remain productive even as you recover from surgery. Dr. Angelchik will create a specific recovery plan for you to ensure that you get back on your feet as quickly as possible while also allowing sufficient time for your body to heal.Strenuous activities like exercise and heavy lifting require a longer recovery time of up to six weeks. Dr. Angelchik will clear you for these more strenuous activities during your follow-up appointments.
Call Dr. Angelchik Today
Are you ready to see how abdominoplasty can enhance your appearance? Call Dr. Anglechik today at 602-375-8888 for your consultation.* We welcome patients throughout Glendale, Phoenix, Tempe, Scottsdale, Mesa, Surprise, and Peoria, Arizona.
* For a limited time our practice is waiving the $95 initial consultation fee for qualified patients.