Abdominoplasty, also known as Tummy Tuck, is one of the most practical treatment methods that is performed as a result of the developments in medicine in recent years for those who suffer from excess fat and sagging skin in the abdomen. Although it can be seen both in males and females, it is efficient to fix the looseness and sagging of the abdominal skin, which is frequently seen especially in women in post-pregnancy period. Excess skin is removed and the skin is stretched so the patient can have a flat belly and a better look.
How is Tummy Tuck performed?
It can take 2 to 5 hours depending on the case. An incision is made from 8–10 cm below the belly button, and above the pubic area which can be hidden with underwear. It resembles to a longer version of cesarean delivery scar. Once the surgery is completed, incision is sutured under the skin and dressings are made. In order to collect the excess liquids, surgical drains are placed. Just after the surgery patient starts to wear a compression corset.
It is a suitable operation for patients who do not have a lot of sagging skin, do not need any replacement of belly button and do not need a repair in the abdominal muscles. The excess skin in the lower abdomen is removed so that the abdomen is smooth and perfectly flat. The incision scar is 3-4 cm (similar to a cesarean scar). It is performed under general anesthesia and takes nearly 2 hours.
It is suitable for patients with advanced excess skin and muscle deformation in the abdominal area, especially after giving birth or due to being overweight. If it is necessary, liposuction can be applied during the abdominoplasty surgery to remove more excess fat from belly or laterals. In the operation, excess skin is removed from both the upper and lower abdomen, and abdominal muscle tissue is adjusted. Having excess skin both in the upper and lower abdomen requires an adjustment in the shape of belly button. After a full abdominoplasty, patient is left with a scar of 10 to 15cms. It is also performed under general anesthesia and takes nearly 3 hours.
Circular Abdominoplasty (Belt Lipectomy)
It is suitable for patients with sagging skin in the abdomen, back and waist especially that had a previous gastric reduction surgery and experienced rapid and excessive weight loss. In the operation, both the excess skin in the abdomen is removed and the abdominal muscles are adjusted to obtain a flat belly. Then, excess skin is removed and tightened in the back and waist area as well. In this way, all the excess skin and fat in both the frontal abdomen and back waist are completely removed. It is performed under general anesthesia and takes 3 to 4 hours to complete.
Recuperation after an Abdominoplasty
After an abdominoplasty surgery, depending on the conditions, patient is usually discharged after 1 or 2 days of hospitalization. Patient is recommended to wear a special compression corset after the tummy tuck surgery. This corset, which has to be worn continuously for 1 month, helps the abdominal region to get into the desired form and increases the success of the surgery. 3-4 hours after the surgery the patient can walk slowly with a companion and the day after the surgery he/she can walk slowly without any help. It is normal to have pain for a while due to the stitches made in the abdominal region during the operation and your doctor will prescribe necessary medications to you. You can take a bath 3 days after the operation and have the ability to meet your daily needs by yourself. You should avoid coughing and sneezing as much as possible because it may hurt you and may damage your stitches if the stitches are not fully adhered during the first 1 week. This information is valid for full abdominoplasty. The recovery time is shorter in mini tummy tuck and patient can return to daily life within 3-4 days.