An abdominoplasty, also known as a tummy tuck, is a cosmetic procedure designed to tighten the stomach muscles and reduce excess fat and skin around the midsection. The goal of the surgery is to make the abdomen flatter and smoother and to improve its overall appearance.
Types of AbdominoplastyThere are several types of abdominoplasty procedures, which can be divided into two main groups:
- Complete abdominoplasty: A complete abdominoplasty involves the tightening of the muscles and a more complete re-contouring of the soft tissue of the abdomen. It can be safely performed as an outpatient procedure for the vast majority of patients. The recovery period is approximately six weeks before resuming full activity. Those in good physical condition before surgery usually recover more quickly.
- Partial abdominoplasty/panniculectomy: Here, surgeons make an incision similar to complete abdominoplasty, but their main goal is the removal of lower abdominal skin laxity without tightening the muscles or re-contouring the upper abdomen. The incision can sometimes be smaller. This type of surgery may be done on an outpatient basis, and the recovery period is generally shorter.
Liposuction is commonly performed in conjunction with abdominoplasty to achieve the best results.
Who is a Good Candidate for Abdominoplasty?To undergo an abdominoplasty, you should have one or more of the following conditions or characteristics:
- Excess or sagging abdominal skin
- Abdominal muscles that have been separated and weakened
- Excess fatty tissue that is concentrated in the abdomen
- Currently at an ideal weight
- Overall good health
- No future pregnancies planned (if you're a woman)