Tummy Tuck (Skin and Muscles)

INTRODUCTION

Tummy tuck (Abdominoplasty or Dermolipectomy) is a surgery which includes the next several aspects:

  1. removing the excess loose skin and subcutaneous fatty tissue from the lower part of the abdomen (the region below the navel) and tightening the remaining skin resulting in a toned, flat and thin frontal abdominal wall
  2. tightening of the abdominal muscles, if needed, making the frontal abdominal wall stronger, better looking and it gives the waist a better and slimmer look
  3. correcting the position as well as the appearance of the navel giving it a “youthful” look, if needed
  4. liposuctions of surrounding regions, if needed, usually in the waist region in order to tone and slim it additionally

This surgery is highly successful, the percentage of satisfied patients is high, and it is is performed in both women and men. In one group of patients, the problem is almost entirely the skin excess (as a result of a diet or pregnancy), while in others there’s also excessive subcutaneous fatty tissue.

There is also a simpler version of this surgery, the so called "mini-abdominoplasty”, where only the lower abdomen regions are removed and tightened.


PREPARATION

In addition to the usual preoperative preparation, it is crucial to pay attention to possible hernia of the frontal abdominal wall, as well at scars from previous procedures (appendix, C-section, etc.). If a pregnancy or a diet is planned, it is recommended to postpone the surgery after their completion.


OPERATION

The operation is performed in general anaesthesia and lasts 2-3 hours.

The incisions are relatively long, at the upper line of the pubic region, but they are planned so that they always stay hidden behind the underwear or swimsuit. They can be horizontal or more in a W shape, depending on the patient’s preferred type and model of underwear. Usually, drains are placed at the end of the surgery and removed after 2-3 days.


RECOVERY, COMPLICATIONS

The patient usually stays in the hospital for 1-2 days. Rest is required, but it is also required to do the so called “early verticalisation”, i.e. short-term lifting from the bed starting from the first day. A special elastic corset is worn around the abdomen for a month, and the patient must avoid heavy physical activity during this time. The stitches are removed after 10-15 days. Swelling and bruising can occur locally, and the secretion can be sometimes prolonged. The skin in the lower abdominal areas may have altered sensitivity for a longer period. Fresh scars shouldn’t be exposed to the sun and it is recommended to start using scar reducing remedies as soon as possible.. The scats fade and soften gradually and can be aesthetically acceptable, but if needed, they be corrected later on in order to obtain even better results.

The surgery effect can be considered long-term, and the best and longest effect is achieved if the patient changes their diet and introduces regular exercise.