It’s one thing to make the decision that a tummy tuck is what you want, it’s another thing to understand what the procedure will entail and how to be prepared for it. The following is a good summary of what to expect from this procedure.
The incision of the typical tummy tuck goes from hip to hip. However, this can vary greatly due to your body habitus and the preference of the surgeon. Your surgeon will try to keep the incision as low on your body as he/she possibly can so it’s hidden beneath the bikini or underwear line. If there is a large amount of skin to remove, the incision can extend even farther than from hip to hip to
remove skin on your sides. This procedure may be referred to as an “extended” tummy tuck. Some people, typically due to bariatric weight-loss surgery, have lost so much weight and have so much excess skin that it makes sense to remove skin circumferentially from the torso. This procedure is referred to as body-lift surgery.
The next step in the abdominoplasty is the tightening of the abdominal muscles. Stretching of the abdominal wall from the inside causes your rectus muscles to spread apart from each other. This is referred to as a diastasis of the muscles and is what causes the bulging of the abdomen. We can tighten the muscles by using sutures to pull them closer to each other. Once we’ve done that, the next step is to carefully remove and discard all the excess skin.
A mini tummy tuck is a procedure whereby you have only a small amount of skin removed, usually about one or two inches, right above the pubic area. This usually leaves a shorter scar. Very few people are candidates for a mini tummy tuck. Typically, to have a mini tummy tuck, your BMI must be less that twenty-five, you must have no excess skin above your belly button, and you must have no muscle separation.
In general, a tummy tuck usually takes about two to three hours to perform under general anesthesia. A mini tummy tuck takes less time, whereas an extended tummy tuck can add another hour or more to the procedure.
Want to learn more? Pick up your copy of, “Making the Cut” available for purchase on Amazon to get more details on this and other procedures.
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