Nothing can flatten the stomach, remove loose skin and fat, and restore shape to the midsection like a tummy tuck.
Weight fluctuations, loose skin, and pregnancy can sometimes prevent an abdomen from transforming despite exercise or diet. During pregnancy, common changes like sagging skin, stretch marks, and muscle separation can alter the appearance of the midsection and cause it to lose its slender shape. While there are many options for fat reduction, noninvasive procedures cannot address the combination of excess fat and loose skin like a tummy tuck – or abdominoplasty – can.
Patients at a healthy weight can achieve a more streamlined stomach appearance through tummy tuck surgery, eliminating excess skin and fat from the abdomen. Because the waistline, hips, and thighs border the abdomen, it is routine to address those areas in the appropriate patient during a tummy tuck. Achieving a flatter, trimmer waistline can be done through various tummy-tucking techniques. You and our plastic surgeons will collaborate to establish a personalized treatment plan that suits your desired outcomes.
Traditional Tummy Tuck
Procedure Time: Two to Five Hours
Recovery: Two to Six Weeks; avoiding strenuous activity for Eight to Twelve Weeks
How Long it Lasts: Permanently
The goal of this procedure is to tighten and tone the entire abdomen. It removes fat and saggy skin and repairs muscles that have stretched out due to age, pregnancy, and/or weight fluctuation. Once your abdominal muscles have separated, you will most likely notice a bloated and barrel-shaped appearance in the lower part of your tummy, even if hardly any fat is present. The only way to correct this is to undergo a surgical procedure to tighten the muscles. If you’re far from your ideal weight, consider modifying your diet and exercising regularly as weight fluctuations can affect long-term results.
For this procedure, you will be placed under general anesthesia. Incisions will be made at each hip bone, and fat will be removed before the skin is tightened and lifted from the belly button downwards. Any excess skin will also be removed. You may experience swelling and bruising, which should disappear within a week. The skin on your stomach may be numb due to minor sensory nerve damage, but it should recover within a year or less. Not to worry, this happens after any surgery in this area, whether cosmetic or not!
Mini or Modified Tummy Tuck
Procedure Time: One to Two Hours
Recovery: One to Four Weeks; avoiding strenuous activity for Six to Eight Weeks
How Long it Lasts: Permanently
Mini or Modified Tummy Tucks aim to eliminate the belly bulge that won’t budge. This procedure eliminates a small amount of loose skin and localized fat, typically between the belly button and pubic bone. Mini or Modified Tummy Tucks will not tighten loose skin above the belly button and may not remove stretch marks above that area. The incision is much smaller, and less skin is removed, so this is an option for someone with minor laxity and bulging.
Unlike a full tummy tuck, this procedure can be completed under general or local anesthesia with sedation. A small incision will be made near the top of the bikini line, excess skin and fat will be removed, and muscles in your lower abdomen will be tightened. Your scar will vary in length depending on your unique circumstances.
Other Tummy Tuck Options:
In addition to the above two options, extended tummy tucks and lateral tension tummy tucks are also incredible options depending on your needs. An extended tummy tuck can reduce heavy love handles and deep folds of fat on the back. Some surgeons may suction the lower back and flanks before turning patients to the abdomen. Another preferred method is to begin in the lateral position and shift the patient from side to side. The incision tends to run from the upper level of the pubic hair all around the back.
On the other hand, the lateral tension tummy tuck is for patients with loose skin on both their stomach and their thighs. This variation places tension laterally on the abdominal muscles instead of centrally to address the stomach. The scar will resemble a traditional tummy tuck and run from hip to hip. It also addresses skin laxity in the thighs.
We want to acknowledge New Beauty Magazine’s valuable insights and original piece on [A Tighter, More Toned Waistline].