Abdominoplasty, more commonly called a tummy tuck, is an excellent surgery that can dramatically contour the midsection. The stomach is one of those areas where, for some reason, no matter how hard some patients work out or diet, they just can’t lose that extra bulge. This scenario can be especially true for women who have had children because the abdominal muscles have stretched and sometimes separate to accommodate a growing child during pregnancy. Let’s look at an example:
Shown here is a patient who has had 3 children, and is left with excess skin in her lower abdomen. Also, observe how the midline appears to be separated beneath the belly button. You can see in the postoperative photo that the extra skin has been removed and the muscle separation repaired, which has resulted in a firm, flat stomach.
Full Tummy Tuck vs. Mini-Tummy Tuck
A full abdominoplasty or tummy tuck, which most patients require, is used to address cases where sagging skin and loose muscles are present above and below the belly button. During this procedure, an incision is made just above the pubis area (hidden in the bikini line) and the skin is lifted. The muscles are sutured to achieve a tighter, flatter appearance. A new location for the bellybutton is created so that it remains in its natural position. Typically, liposuction of the love handles is added to this procedure to create more body contouring.
A mini-tummy tuck, meanwhile, is appropriate for patients with minimal sagging skin isolated below the navel. If the sagging is extreme or the muscles are separated, a full abdominoplasty will be needed to provide the best results. A mini-tummy tuck is a less taxing procedure with reduced recovery time, and like a full abdominoplasty, often benefits from the addition of liposuction for additional body contouring.
Other Procedures for Toning the Abdomen
Full Body Lift – This procedure, also known as a circumferential body lift, is ideal for patients who have lost a massive amount of weight through diet or as a result of gastric bypass surgery. A band of skin around the belt area is removed, which provides the benefits of a tummy tuck, buttock lift and outer leg lift, all in one.
Thigh Lift or Buttock Lift – Excess skin is removed and the muscles are tightened through an incision placed discretely in the inner thigh area or under the buttock.
Arm Lift (brachioplasty) – An incision is placed under the arms through which the muscles are tightened and excess skin is removed.
Interested in Abdominoplasty?
Dr. Heller and Dr. Haramis provide careful analysis to determine which procedure suits your needs best. The surgery is performed in our AAAHC surgery center, after which patients are free to return home and enjoy a comfortable and private recovery.
Some post-operative discomfort and swelling, as well as some tightness, are normal. Dr. Heller and Dr. Haramis are happy to answer any questions or concerns that arise after surgery. Expected recovery is 10-14 days, and we advise that strenuous activity be avoided for 3-4 weeks. Any additional questions you may have, as well as financing options, can be discussed during your free consultation regarding a tummy tuck.
Contact us today by calling (212) 661-2563 or completing our online form to schedule a free consultation. We proudly serve patients from Staten Island, Manhattan, Long Island, and New York City, NY.