Tummy tuck / Abdominoplasty

Tummy tuck/Abdominoplasty

A bulging belly full of fatty deposit that doesn’t budge with exercise is the problem of almost every other person. No amount of changes in diet will change it either, because he or she has a desk job and has no choice but sit down and work to earn a living.

But for those who wish to turn over a new leaf and start afresh on dietary and exercise habits, the beginning can be a tummy tuck surgery, or what is called abdominoplasty by surgeons. The bulging belly may be for various reasons – post-pregnancy hiccups in weight loss, bad lifestyle habits, or from weakened ab muscles that tend to make the area look loose and saggy. When this happens, even the skin on the abdomen tends to stretch, lose its elasticity and finally develop stretch marks, which are another problem from the point of view of self-esteem and self-image. Being over-weight is a huge problem for this same reason.

The procedure of tummy tuck is fairly straightforward. You will be informed in advance that you shall spend at least one night in the hospital, and then general anaesthesia is given after you are prepared for surgery. A horizontal incision is made near the pubic bone, so it can be easily concealed under your undergarments. The doctor takes note of all the skin that needs to be got rid of, and then makes the incision. The navel is kept in place while the doctor may need to cut around it to remove the excess skin.

According to the extent of the surgery, sometimes an abdominoplasty may be referred to as “mini”. A mini tummy tuck works only on the excess skin and muscles of the abdomen below the navel. The incision in this case is rather small.

An extended tummy tuck, is done all around the navel and is suitable for correction all around, including the back. In this form, it can be used as a follow-up post weight loss surgery when people need to get rid of a lot of extra skin, and cannot do it through mere exercise.

After the procedure is done, since the region operated upon is the abdomen, and that too under general anaesthesia, only soft solids and fluid diet is given to the patient. He or she is checked for ability to move legs and hips, and to maintain the said position. Pillows can be placed under the thighs to avoid straining the abdominal muscles, which may be raw and inflamed from the procedure. Antibiotics and pain relief medication continues for about a week. Depending on the recovery signs exhibited by the patient, the dressing can be taken off on the second post-operative day.

The patient may not be able to take up normal activities for about a month after the procedure, and sports or exercise is not advisable for about two months after the surgery. Operating heavy machinery such as vehicles and driving alone can be permitted by the doctor after the first month.

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