• Tummy tuck surgery, also known as abdominoplasty, removes excess fat and skin and, in most cases, restores weakened or separated muscles creating an abdominal profile that is smoother and firmer.

    Tummy tuck surgery, also known as abdominoplasty, removes excess fat and skin and, in most cases, restores weakened or separated muscles creating an abdominal profile that is smoother and firmer.

    A flat and well-toned abdomen is something many of us strive for through exercise and weight control. Sometimes these methods cannot achieve our goals. Even individuals of otherwise normal body weight and proportion can develop an abdomen that protrudes or is loose and sagging.

    The most common causes of this include:

    • Aging
    • Heredity
    • Pregnancy
    • Prior surgery
    • Significant fluctuations in weight

    What a tummy tuck won’t do

    A tummy tuck is not a substitute for weight loss or an appropriate exercise program.

    Although the results of a tummy tuck are technically permanent, the positive outcome can be greatly diminished by significant fluctuations in your weight. For this reason, individuals who are planning substantial weight loss or women who may be considering future pregnancies would be advised to postpone a tummy tuck. A tummy tuck cannot correct stretch marks, although these may be removed or somewhat improved if they are located on the areas of excess skin that will be excised.

    Tummy tuck candidates

    In general, you may be a good tummy tuck candidate if:

    • You are physically healthy and at a stable weight
    • You have realistic expectations
    • You are a non-smoker
    • You are bothered by the appearance of your abdomen

    During your tummy tuck recovery, dressings or bandages may be applied to your incisions, and you may be wrapped in an elastic bandage or a compression garment to minimize swelling and support your abdomen as it heals following surgery. Small, thin tubes may be temporarily placed under the skin to drain any excess blood or fluid that may collect.

    You will be given specific instructions that may include:

    • How to care for the surgical site and drains
    • Medications to apply or take orally to aid healing and reduce the potential for infection
    • Specific concerns to look for at the surgical site or in your general health
    • When to follow up with your plastic surgeon

    The final results of tummy tuck surgery may be initially obscured by swelling and your inability to stand fully upright until internal healing is complete. Within a week or two, you should be standing tall and confident in your new slimmer profile. Your tummy tuck will result in a flatter, firmer abdominal contour that is more proportionate with your body type and weight.

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