Question: I am so excited for my upcoming tummy tuck. I work out daily but after four kids I have never been able to get my tummy back to how it used to be. How soon after surgery will I be able to get back into my workout routine?
Answer: After an abdominoplasty, it is necessary to take about two weeks where there is no heavy lifting and no strenuous exercise. Any strenuous effort performed in the first two weeks would result in significant swelling and even collections of fluid under the skin that are known as seromas. After two weeks, most people are able to resume all of their normal activities including working and driving but things like going to the gym, working out or doing core exercises like pilates or Yoga, you would have to wait at least four weeks before resuming those.
Question: When is a mini tummy tuck needed instead of just liposuction in the abdomen?
Answer: A mini tummy tuck is indicated for patients who have a small amount of excess skin in the lower abdomen near the pubic area and not so much in the upper abdomen above the belly button. Even in cases of mini abdominoplasties, liposuction is used as a tool or adjunct to sculpt the abdomen and the waist and get a better result.
Question: Is liposuction typically used during a tummy tuck?
Answer: In my practice and in my experience, liposuction is always used during a tummy tuck for sculpting the abs, shaping the waist and giving more contour to the hips and buttocks area. I feel that without the liposuction, the procedure would not be complete. In the hands of a board certified plastic surgeon, combining liposuction with a tummy tuck is a very safe technique.
Question: I am wondering if I am a better candidate for liposuction of the abdomen or a tummy tuck, either a full or mini tuck. I do not have that much of a belly, maybe just a small little pocket of fat, which makes me think that liposuction would be sufficient, however, I do have a lot of stretch marks.
Answer: The key here is the stretch marks. If a person has excess fat in a trouble area such as a lower abdomen, love handles, saddle bags or inner thighs, liposuction is a great technique for contouring and sculpting these areas if there are no stretch marks. Stretch marks are essentially deep scars under the skin and once you have stretch marks that means your skin has lost its elasticity and liposuction alone while it would improve things by sculpting the fat, it would also leave you with a lot of extra skin that would then need to be excised.
Question: My uncle had a tummy tuck and now he does not have a belly button. Does this always happen? I would like to get one but I do not know that I want to be without my belly button.
Answer: Usually tummy tuck procedure involves preservation of the belly button. Some patients who have lost massive amounts of weight get another procedure called a panniculectomy. This procedure involves removal of the excess skin and fat of the lower abdomen and the pannus and usually the belly button is sacrificed but in traditional cosmetic tummy tucks the belly button is preserved.
Question: I had gastric bypass surgery and I am looking for a way to get rid of all the excess skin I now have. I think a body lift is right for me because my sagging skin is pretty much all over however I am concerned about the cost. It seems like the procedure is really a combination of several procedures like a tummy tuck, thigh lift, etc, does this mean that the body lift costs significantly more than other procedures?
Answer: A body lift indeed is a combination of a tummy tuck, thigh lift and buttock lift all in one and it does involve an incision or scar that will go all the way around the lower abdomen. The body lift procedure is slightly more costly than other procedures because it is a more lengthy procedure. A body lift, depending on the patient, can take anywhere from six to eight hours. However, it is a very good procedure to address the tummy, thighs and buttocks, especially after weight loss following a gastric bypass.
Question: Is it normal for the doctor to remove fat during a tummy tuck by cutting it out rather than performing liposuction?
Answer: A tummy tuck by definition is removal of fat, usually the fat that extends from the belly button all the way to the pubic area. In addition to that, liposuction can be used as a method of sculpting the abdomen, the back and the flanks in order to achieve a better contour.
I had a tummy tuck a month and a half ago. The results are very nice except that my pubic area seems bigger than it did before my surgery. Is this normal and will it get better?
Well after a tummy tuck, you should expect up to 8-10 weeks of swelling, especially if the tummy tuck was done in conjunction with liposuction of the abdomen. The swelling at about a month and a half will be in the dependent portion, that means in the lower abdomen and right in the pubic area, so this area of swelling should continue to improve, again even up to ten weeks after the initial surgery. One thing that patients should be aware of though is that sometimes there can be an accumulation of fluid, not just swelling, that can happen in the suprapubic area as well and this may need to be aspirated or removed and this is something that your surgeon should assess and determine if it will be necessary.
Posted by Dr. Alain Polynice in Abdominoplasty on May 12th
Question: What is a mini tummy tuck?
Answer: There are many different types of tummy tucks but a mini tummy tuck is one that addresses essentially just the excess skin and fat of the lower abdomen below the belly button. It does not address skin laxity or excess fat above the belly button and typically also does not address the widening of the abdominal muscles. For all of those issues, a traditional abdominoplasty would be the answer.
Posted by Dr. Alain Polynice in Abdominoplasty on May 12th
Is it necessary to reach my weight loss goal before having a tummy tuck? I have lost 90 pounds and would ultimately like to lose 25 more, should I wait?
Answer: It is always better to be closer to your goal weight before proceeding with any surgery especially in this case of a tummy tuck where we would be doing liposuction in addition to removing excess skin and fat. It is best to be closer to your goal weight because ultimately the results will be so much better. If you have already lost 90 pounds and only need to lose about 20-25 more, then it would be a good time to move forward with the planned procedure. Losing 15 or 20 pounds after surgery would not make a significant difference in the overall results.
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This patient decided to have a facelift cosmetic surgical procedure. Hear what she had to say about her recovery and if it was worth it.