Abdominoplasty - Tummy Tuck
An abdominoplasty is performed to improve the contour of the abdomen. It removes excessive amounts of abdominal skin and fat. Seperated abdominal muscles known as diastasis recti can also be repaired during this procedure. Abdominoplasty surgery is often combined with liposuction of the hips to rid the patient of stubborn fat in the love handle regions of the abdomen.
Abdominoplasties are done either under a general anaesthetic (the patient is asleep) or under a spinal block (the patient is numbed from the chest down). Liposuction is regularly employed to thin the fat of the upper abdomen. Then a cut is made around the umbilicus (belly button) and the umbilicus is left attached to the abdominal wall. A larger incision is made at the junction between the abdomen and pelvis and extended towards the hips. This cut is carried down to the muscle layer of the abdomen and then the abdominal fat and skin is lifted off the muscle layer. The muscle layer is tightened. The skin is stretched downwards, bringing the liposuctioned tissue across the whole abdomen and the excessive amount of skin and fat is removed. A new hole is made for the umbilicus and the skin is closed with sutures. Ideally, the scar which results from this operation will be hidden by a bathing suit. The length of the scar depends on the amount of redundant skin and fat that the patient carries preoperatively.
Mini Tummy Tuck
A modification of this procedure is known as a mini-tummy tuck. The umbilical incision is not made and the dissection of the skin and fat proceeds only up to the level of the umbilicus. Then the excessive tissue is excised and the patient's skin is closed. It is suited for patients who are bothered by a small roll of redundant skin and fat on their lower abdomen but have normal contours throughout the upper two thirds of their abdomen. The resultant scar is shorter than what is seen in a full abdominoplasty.
The recovery course of a patient who has had an abdominoplasty varies among individuals. Most people are able to return to work in about a week. Several more weeks are usually required before the patient feels totally normal. Often patients will wear an abdominal binder for about six weeks post-operatively to reduce their abdominal swelling.
Please contact Dr. Campbell's office should you have any questions or if you wish to book a consultation appointment.