Tummy tuck surgery, also known as abdominoplasty, removes excess fat and skin and, in most cases, restores weakened or separated muscles creating an abdominal profile that is smoother and firmer.
A flat and well-toned abdomen is something many of us strive for through exercise and weight control. Sometimes these methods cannot achieve our goals.
An abdominoplasty is an operation to improve the appearance of the abdomen. It is very beneficial for certain people and a full history and examination is needed to determine your suitability. Mr. Kelly recommends that you discuss this decison with your family doctor before seeking a referral as your medical history is very important in making an appropriate decision. You should consider the options carefully and have realistic expectations about the results. Surgery is usually safe and effective. However, complications do occur with every operation. You need to know about them to help you make an informed decision about surgery. Knowing about them will also help to detect and treat any problems early.
This technique is suitable if you have a lot of excess skin. Mr. Kelly will make a curved incision from one hip to the other, going down to just above the pubic area. He will remove any excess skin and fat between the pubic area and your umbilicus. He will then cut under the skin above your umbilicus, pulling it downwards and tightening it.
Mr. Kelly will need to make a small circular cut for your umbilicus. Sometimes he will need to reconstruct your umbilicus (umbilicoplasty).
Mr. Kelly may need to tighten the muscles of the abdominal wall and use liposuction to remove excess fat.
This technique is suitable if you have only moderate excess skin. Mr. Kelly will need to make a cut just above the pubic area to remove the excess skin (see figure 4). Mr. Kelly may need to tighten the muscles of the abdominal wall. He will not need to cut under the skin above your umbilicus and will use liposuction only if needed to remove any excess fat. This operation allows earlier recovery but is not suitable for patients with significant hooding or muscle weakness above the umbilicus. Mr. Kelly may also use liposuction to remove excess fat. At the end of the operation, small tubes (drains) are placed to remove any excess fluid that accumulates beneath the incision.
The wound is usually closed with dissolvable stitches, leaving the drains in place.
You wil need to wear a support garment for 6 weeks and these are purchased pre-operatively from Eurosurgical.co.uk.
Avoid driving and use cushions in the car at all times to prevent pressure on the wound. You will wear support stockings for 7-10 days after surgery in order to minimise the risk of thrombo-embolic disease.
A follow up visit at 3-7 days is needed to assess the wounds and to remove drains as needed – patients often go home with the drains in place.