Sometimes after weight loss or pregnancy the abdomen does not return to its original shape no matter how much you diet or exercise. An abdominoplasty or tummy tuck can remove the excess skin and fat, improve abdominal contours, scars and tighten the abdominal muscles as well.
This procedure is normally performed with liposuction but may also be performed with a lateral thigh lift.
In a standard abdominoplasty the excess skin and fat between the pubic area and the umbilicus is removed leaving and repositioning the umbilicus.
The skin from the umbilicus is drawn down and sutured at the pubic level leaving a scar at the lower level of the abdominal wall. Liposuction is usually carried out at the same time as well.
The Abdominoplasty (Tummy Tuck) procedure takes place in the modern Spire Little Aston Hospital near Birmingham.
It is prudent to be close to ones ideal weight as the best results are achieved in patients who are the correct weight for their height.
It is also recommended to stop the oral contraceptive pill six weeks prior to surgery and consider an alternative method of contraception to reduce the risk of thrombosis.
It is also advisable to stop smoking prior to surgery and till the wounds are fully healed to prevent problems with wound healing and chest infections following the operation.
These may include problems with pain. It is advisable not to have aspirin/ibuprofen type analgesics as this can cause bleeding.
Drains are removed following the operation when they stop draining blood or serum a few days following the operation. This fluid may reaccumulate after the drains are removed and may require aspiration or drainage. Healing may be slow especially in smokers.
Numbness is expected in the lower abdominal skin and usually lasts for 3-6 months but may be permanent. Deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolism are rare complications of any operation including this one.
The abdominal skin will feel tight and it may be difficult to stand up straight for several days.
Garments are provided to be worn following the operation and should be worn for 6 weeks post-operatively day and night, in order to support the abdominal skin.
It is recommended to avoid vigorous exercise for 6 weeks. Moderate exercise such as walking or swimming is recommended until this time.