Age, pregnancy, or simple weight fluctuations can contribute to a loss in skin elasticity and structural support which leads to excess skin and fat in the abdominal area. A tummy tuck not only restores the stomach to a tighter, more youthful appearance, but it can also restore your confidence.
As a female plastic surgeon, Dr. Gill has a genuine understanding of the changes a woman’s body goes through and carefully takes this into consideration during her surgical planning. Through thoughtful consultations with her patients, Dr. Gill makes it a priority to understand each woman’s specific goals and desires for tummy tuck surgery.
Is a Tummy Tuck Right for Me?
A tummy tuck, also called abdominoplasty, is a surgical procedure that tightens the abdominal muscles and removes excess fat and skin to restore a youthful contour to the abdominal area. A tummy tuck is frequently combined with breast augmentation, also know as a Mommy Makeover, or liposuction to address love handles and muffin tops. Most women in good physical health with realistic expectations are candidates for this procedure.
As a female plastic surgeon, Dr. Gill understands that women seek tummy tuck surgery for a variety of reasons. Regardless of yours, Dr. Gill will guide you through the decisions you need to make during your consultation.
Tummy Tuck Surgery with Dr. Gill
During your consultation, Dr. Gill will evaluate your anatomy, discuss your concerns and thoughtfully design a unique surgical plan that will safely and effectively meet your tummy tuck goals. The specific tummy tuck technique she uses will depend on the amount and location of abdominal correction needed. The tummy tuck is designed for patients with lax skin in the upper and lower abdominal areas who require a significant amount of skin and fat to be removed. If you have lax skin below the navel only and require only a minimal amount of skin to be removed, you may be a good candidate for a mini tummy tuck procedure.
Tummy tucks involve making a scar on the abdomen, though they will fade and flatten over time. Dr. Gill will place incisions under your bikini line, so they will be well concealed with minimal clothing coverage. A tummy tuck may be combined with abdominal liposuction to remove love handles and muffin tops. Liposuction can help to restore a more contoured waistline, which an abdominoplasty alone cannot.
A tummy tuck is usually performed under general anesthesia. Dr. Gill will discuss the most appropriate type of anesthesia for you during your consultation. Time in surgery takes 2 to 3 hours, depending on type of tummy tuck performed. You can expect to return to work in about 10 days.
Tummy Tuck FAQs
What’s the best way to prepare for tummy tuck surgery?
Preparing for your procedure helps to ensure the best results, as well as an easier recovery. If you smoke, stop. Any amount of smoking will increase the risk of potential complications. Smoking decreases the oxygen levels within your cells, and causes your blood vessels to constrict. This will slow your body’s ability to heal.
Discuss the medications, supplements and vitamins you take with Dr. Gill. She might ask you to stop taking some of your medications before surgery. Vitamin E is discontinued at least two weeks prior to surgery since it may interfere with blood clotting. Aspirin and other NSAIDs may also delay healing or increase your risk of overly excessive bleeding. Maintaining a healthy and balanced diet is very important to strengthen your body’s immune system and to help speed recovery.
Get sufficient exercise before surgery to help build muscle and to increase your body’s metabolic rate. This helps to avoid weight gain during recovery.
What is recovery like after a tummy tuck?
The recovery time after an abdominoplasty is usually one or two weeks. Most patients will experience bruising and swelling, and some temporary numbness may occur. You may find it difficult to stand up straight during the first week after surgery, as your body is adjusting. Discomfort and pain are to be expected in the first week after surgery, but this is normally controlled by pain medication prescribed by Dr. Gill.
Tummy tuck patients wear an abdominal binder or support garment for about three weeks after the procedure. This will help to control swelling as the body heals. Dr. Gill encourages patients to walk every day during the first week after surgery to ease swelling and prevent blood clots. Most patients return to work schedule 10 days to two weeks after surgery.
Am I a good candidate for tummy tuck surgery?
Good candidates for this procedure are women or men in good overall health who wish to improve the appearance of their abdomen and have realistic expectations about treatment results. This surgery was developed to correct areas of the body that do not readily improve through exercise and diet. It is not a weight-loss alternative.
Will a tummy tuck get rid of stretch marks?
This procedure may remove some lower stretch marks below the navel where the skin is removed, but an abdominoplasty won’t treat stretch marks that occur in other areas.
Will an abdominoplasty leave scars?
All surgery leaves scars, but Dr. Gill hides scars below the bikini line and between the hipbones.
How soon can I go back to work?
Most patients can return to work after about 10 days following abdominoplasty surgery.
What are the risks of tummy tuck surgery?
Potential complications or risks include scarring, infection, bleeding and delayed healing. Dr. Gill will discuss the all risks with you, along with steps that you may take to minimize them.