Body Procedures | Tummy Tuck

Body Procedures: Tummy Tuck
(Abdominoplasty or Dermolipectomy)

Know everything about this technique:

When the waist recovers its shape, everything becomes easier: you move more gracefully, the clothes you try on fit nicely and you like yourself much better, like others do.
Tummy tuck surgery, also known as abdominoplasty or abdominal dermolipectomy, removes fat and flaccidity from you abdomen and, at the same time, tightens your abdominal muscles, turning them into a natural corset.

What results should I expect from a tummy tuck?
  • Unlike liposuction, which only removes fat, tummy tuck surgery also tightens the lax tissues of the abdomen that hang due to overweight or aging. This procedure is indicated when all the abdominal area is involved. However, when the area affected is only that of the lower abdomen and does not extend beyond the navel, it's better to have a mini tummy tuck done.
  • It enhances the waist, since it tightens the abdominal muscles like a corset by making a vertical fold.
  • By reducing the waist's diameter, it makes the hips more pronounced; this helps the body acquire a more feminine outline.
  • It eliminates scars and stretch marks on the area.
  • It makes it easier to treat, at the same time, pre-existing conditions such as hernias or eventrations.
What results should I NOT expect from a tummy tuck?
  • It doesn’t treat obesity. If you have obesity, you should visit the section about bariatric surgery.
The surgery

Peridural or general anesthesia is used.

How long will it take?
Between 2 and 4 hours, according to the complexity of the case.

How is tummy tuck surgery performed?
The incision runs from hip to hip with a curvature that follows the upper outline of a bikini. The incision is made there to hide the resulting scar easily under the underwear. In most cases, a circular incision is made around the navel to tighten the skin of the abdomen as much as necessary without displacing the navel.
The surgeon separates the skin from the abdominal wall. If necessary, the abdominal muscles are tightened by making a vertical fold; this will make the abdominal wall firmer and the waist narrower. The skin is tightened towards the pubis and the excess is trimmed. Once the skin is tightened, a small round incision is made for the navel. Finally, the surgeon closes all the incisions with stitches, and applies a bandage and a drainage tube to drain the excess fluids.

How long will I have to stay hospitalized?
You will have to be hospitalized for a day

After the surgery

What kind of bandages will I need? when will they be removed?
To heal properly, you will have to wear a special bandage on the treated area for about two or three weeks. It is a bit uncomfortable but, unfortunately, it is necessary. A couple of flexible and thin drainage tubes will be placed that will drain off excess fluids from the wounds to an airtight plastic bottle. This reduces the incidence of bruises.

Will I feel a lot of pain?
From medium to severe. The surgeon will indicate you to take analgesics every 6 or 8 hours; this will make you feel quite relieved.

When will the stitches be removed?
Between 7 and 14 days after the surgery.

What about swelling and bruises?
Bruises are not likely to develop. The inflammation is moderate and takes some days to go away.

What will the scars look like?
We would like to tell you that this surgery is one of those surgeries that leave no scars… but we definitely can’t. The scar will be always visible, but it will turn to a pale pink and become less visible. It's made where it will remain hidden by your underwear or bathing suit, since it follows the outline of a bikini.
The other possible scar is the one around the navel, but it will be merged with it and will not be very visible.

Recovery period

You will have to rest at the hotel for a few days, usually about a week. As soon as you can, you should try to get up and walk around a bit. If you have a sedentary job, you may be able to go back to it two weeks after the surgery. If it is not and you have to lift heavy objects, or if it involves physical activities, you will have to wait between two and four more weeks. You will be able to show up in public wearing a bathing suit after about a month.
The first weeks after the surgery tend to be long and unpleasant. During this period, some people may feel quite depressed. It’s quite normal to feel this way after any kind of surgery, no matter how simple it may be. You may even come to think that you made a big mistake. But don’t worry. Most of the people who are happy today and who are satisfied with the results obtained, have also felt somewhat depressed.

What are the risks and complications involved?

It is very unlikely for tummy tuck surgery to present any complications when performed by a qualified surgeon. However, every surgery, no matter how simple it may be, has certain risks and we should not rule them out, especially when it’s a major procedure such as this one.

  • Adverse reactions to anesthesia.
  • Infections may develop but, if you take the right antibiotics, they will be less likely to develop.
  • Uneven scars that may need to be corrected by a simple surgical procedure.
  • Pulmonary thrombosis. If a blood clot travels through the bloodstream and reaches the lungs, it may cause a cardiopulmonary arrest. To prevent this, try to get up and to move your legs as soon as you can.
  • Large bruises that may need to be drained.
  • Seromas, or fluid accumulation beneath the skin, may develop. In some cases, they will have to be drained with a syringe.
  • Skin necrosis occurs in a very small percentage of cases, but it can be treated if dealt with in time.
Finally, the outcome...

Your waist will be narrower and your abdomen will be flatter and firmer for a long time. The results of a tummy tuck surgery are permanent and most of the patients are satisfied with the benefits obtained. All in all, they consider that their bodies look much better after the surgery, in spite of the scar.

Tummy tuck (Abdominoplasty) Pictures taken before and 2 months after the surgery, which is why the scar still looks a little fresh and the skin has marks of the compression garment that the patient still kept using at the time.

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