Abdominoplasty, also known as a tummy tuck, is a procedure that makes the abdomen thinner and more firm by removing excess skin and fat, while tightening your abdominal muscles. Many of us strive to have a thinner, flatter stomach, and may need a little help beyond diet and exercise.
The procedure is designed to create a youthful looking stomach, reversing the effects of age, sagging, or significant fluctuation in weight.
- 1 What is a Tummy Tuck?
- 2 Who Makes a Good Candidate for a Tummy Tuck?
- 3 Consultation
- 4 Before Tummy Tuck Surgery
- 5 Tummy Tuck Procedure
- 6 Types of Tummy Tuck
- 7 Before & After Photos
- 8 Recovery from a Tummy Tuck
- 9 Complementary Procedures
- 10 Cost
What is a Tummy Tuck?
Tummy tuck, or abdominoplasty, is a surgical procedure designed to trim down the stomach and sculpt the patient’s abdominal area to create a beautifully thin, even midsection. The operation works by tightening the skin on the surface and repairs the abs to create better form and overall shape.
In many people, the belly area can become flabby or protruding despite exercise and good nutrition. This can happen due to prior weight gain or loss, pregnancy, certain health conditions, or simply as a result of the natural aging process. It should be noted that a tummy tuck isn’t a substitute for exercise. Although these options can sometimes fail to achieve the results you want and a tummy tuck can step in and take over, it is best to maintain a healthy and active lifestyle after surgery so you can keep that midsection gorgeous and lean for a long, long time.
Who Makes a Good Candidate for a Tummy Tuck?
An ideal candidate for a tummy tuck is someone who:
- Is physically healthy and at a stable weight
- Has realistic expectations about the procedure
- Is a non-smoker
- Wants to make a change in the appearance of their abdomen
Those who are planning a substantial weight loss regimen should hold off on getting the procedure done. The process can’t completely correct stretch marks, but may improve those marks.
If you are interested in undergoing a tummy tuck surgery, schedule a consultation visit in Marin County or Berkley with Dr. Kyle Belek to get all the essential information and evaluations. During the appointment, he will address any worries or questions you have in addition to conducting an analysis to ensure that you are a good candidate for this cosmetic procedure.
Dr. Belek will also give you the rundown as far as what the surgery actually entails, how your aesthetic desires will be met, payment and cost options, and the necessary preparation and recovery processes. Be ready to share your medical history and current health and lifestyle, including any medications you might be taking.
Before Tummy Tuck Surgery
Depending on his preliminary assessment during the consult, Dr. Belek may require that you get additional medical testing to make sure there are no elevated risks associated with your potential future tummy tuck. Based on the information you provide you may also need to alter or stop taking certain medications that create higher risk of complication during the surgery – this includes some herbal supplements as well.
As with all invasive operations it is essential that you stop smoking in plenty of time before entering the operating room and avoid any anti-inflammatory drugs like aspirin and ibuprofen. Plan to be well taken care of after the procedure and have someone ready to pick you up from the facility to take you home so you can rest.
Tummy Tuck Procedure
First, you will have a consultation with Dr. Belek. You and he will discuss your goals and desired outcomes for the procedure. He will also take pictures of the surgical area to decide what route should be taken to accomplish your goals.
After anesthesia is administered, your surgeon will make an incision appropriate for the technique chosen, then shape the skin, tissue, and muscle as needed. It is possible to get a partial or mini-tummy tuck for patients whose trouble area lies below the navel. Any excess will be removed, and the navel may need to be repositioned. The incisions are then closed with stitches.
Types of Tummy Tuck
Abdominoplasty is a cosmetic surgery that is highly individualized to each patient’s natural body type and intended results. Depending on what you want, Dr. Belek will coach you through the various different approaches to find the one that will best serve your needs and give you the self-image you’ve always craved.
Mini Tummy Tuck
This procedure is perfect for people who want to lessen the amount of skin in the abdominal area and tighten the lower muscles but would prefer a less invasive option. The mini tummy tuck smoothes out and flattens the belly, but unlike the more intense options it only reshapes abdominal muscles below the belly button, which is often a problem area for patients. This may seem like a minor undertaking, but it can have extraordinary aesthetic impact for certain body types.
Full Tummy Tuck
In this case the procedure removes extra skin from above and below the navel and tightening the muscles in the whole abdominal region to give an attractive sculpted appearance. The navel itself may also be relocated so that it looks more natural in its beautiful new environment. This choice can be discussed in person as well during your consultation with Dr. Belek.
Extended Tummy Tuck
An extended abdominoplasty involves several more additional measures than the mini or full version of this procedure. A larger incision is required in order to allow Dr. Belek to better reach and reshape every part of the patient’s midsection. Excess skin is reduced, and abdominal muscles above and below the belly button are tightened, and the sides of the upper body are also slimmed down and contoured to improve the body’s entire silhouette.
Before & After Photos
Recovery from a Tummy Tuck
After the procedure, you will experience some pain and swelling which is normal. Your doctor will prescribe pain medication, and you may be wrapped in a compression garment to minimize swelling and support your abdomen in the healing process.
At home, you will want to have ice packs and petroleum jelly on hand to help alleviate the pain you may be going through. Light activities can be resumed in roughly one week. Heavy activity should be avoided during the recovery process. Full recovery should take about three to six months.
Of course your tummy tuck can be incredibly effective and confidence-boosting on its own – that’s what makes this surgery so popular. However, there is a whole range of additional cosmetic procedures that many patients like to consider having done at the same time in order to really achieve the body of their dreams in one fell swoop.
Liposuction often goes hand-in-hand with tummy tucks, especially in instances where fat removal is desired or necessary. This fat removal method reduces the size of fat deposits in various parts of the body, including the stomach, thighs, hips, buttocks, face, arms, and chest region. When coupled with a tummy tuck, liposuction can be used to assist in reshaping the midsection and waist or on other areas to create a stunning full-body effect.
Many women go into the consultation visit wishing to reshape more than just the tummy. And what better way to complement a trim new figure than beautiful, shapely breasts? Whether you would like to lift, enlarge, restructure, or reduce them, this could be a great opportunity to reform the whole upper body and earnestly pursue the figure you’ve always wanted.
Choices for breast augmentation vary from silicone or saline-based implants to fat transfer using liposuction to relocate natural fat from other parts of the body. If you’re looking to remove fat from the stomach area via liposuction, this combined procedure may be a great chance to augment the breasts in a natural and minimally invasive way at the same time. Breast reduction is also a fantastic accompaniment to the tummy tuck if what you’re looking for is a more tight and petite frame overall.
Sometimes called the “Wonder Woman Makeover”, the Mommy Makeover is a highly customized set of surgical options to improve almost every part of the body moms may want to slim down, tighten, lift, enlarge, or tuck after pregnancy. This includes breast procedures like implants, lifts, and fat grafts, as well as liposuction, tummy tucks, and even the occasional facial procedure like Botox or dermal fillers. The Mommy Makeover is loved for its versatility, which allows patients who are going in for an abdominoplasty to also add on a variety of other surgical enhancements to capture the exact body they have in mind, top to bottom.
The cost of tummy tuck surgery is something that will also be addressed in advance during your consultation with Dr. Belek. This will fluctuate based on your preferences and specific set of circumstances; all options should be discussed in detail with the surgeon beforehand so you are prepared in every way for your toned new body.
If you are interested in going through any additional complementing procedures at the time of your tummy tuck, this will impact the price as well – ask Dr. Belek about specific additional work you may wish to have done to get a better idea of the total cost.