The tummy tuck operation is designed to remove excess skin and fat and tighten the abdominal muscles, enabling both men and women to achieve a more youthful, flat and firm abdomen. Age, loss of skin elasticity and muscle strength, combined with fatty deposits in the abdomen which can cause this area to bulge.
After significant weight loss, the abdominal muscles are weak and the skin can remain loose and saggy. Despite the best efforts to improve toning through exercise and diet, sometimes a tummy tuck is the only solution to remove unsightly abdominal folds. Women may also face a similar problem after pregnancy, especially following multiple births.
The type of operation required to achieve the best result for you will depend on the amount of excess skin and fat and this will be discussed at the time of your consultation.
In most cases the surgery will be performed under a general anaesthetic and hospitalisation of two to three days is required. Where only a small amount of excess skin is to be removed the operation may be performed under sedation, requiring hospitalisation of approximately two hours.
With abdominoplasty, excess skin and fat tissue are removed and the muscles around the middle waist are tightened. The navel will then be reinserted into place. At the end of the operation a cleansing drain is inserted and the wounds are closed with tissue glue. Immediately after surgery the patient is given a special compression garment to wear.
For twenty-four hours after abdominoplasty, the patient has to maintain an upright position. After this any drains, IV drip and urinary catheter are removed and the patient can start to walk around and showering is permitted. The patient needs to wear the compression garment day and night for a period of six weeks and it may only be taken off to launder it or to wash. The tissue glue disappears after ten days, after that, taking a bath is allowed. During the first month following surgery sports activities are not allowed but weights up to ten kilograms may be lifted. After this period, the patient may engage in abdominal muscle training.
With Abdominoplasty surgery a scar remains visible right above the pubic area. Care should be taken to keep hydrated for the first month after surgery. While the scar retains its reddish colour, exposure to sunlight must be avoided.