Many of us strive for a flat and well-toned abdomen through exercise and weight control. Many, however, cannot achieve desired results. Oftentimes, changes after pregnancy, previous surgery of the abdomen, or excess skin after significant weight loss prevent individuals from obtaining the flat, toned abdomen they are striving for.
In these cases, a tummy tuck (abdominoplasty) may be a good option. Generally, abdominoplasty removes fat and skin, and can also restore weakened or separated muscles. This can help create a smoother and firmer abdominal contour.
Abdominoplasty can be performed using a variety of techniques. Excess fat in the abdominal area can be removed by liposuction, loose and sagging skin can be excised, and weakened or separated muscles can be repaired. If a combination of these conditions is present, multiple body contouring techniques can be employed during the same surgery.
The incision pattern can vary slightly depending on anatomy and desired results. Most commonly, it involves a horizontal incision at the level of the pubic hairline, extending towards each hip. A second incision near the navel may be necessary for skin removal. Incision length increases with the amount of excess skin requiring removal. If correction is isolated to just below the navel, a limited incision may be an option. In some cases, liposuction alone may produce the desired results.
A flatter, firmer abdomen will be apparent immediately after surgery, but final results may be obscured by swelling initially. Within a month or two, you can expect swelling to subside, and can begin enjoying your new slimmer profile.