The tummy tuck (abdominoplasty) procedure is one of the most powerful surgical procedures in a plastic surgeon’s armamentarium. This is primarily due to the fact that the procedure can address excess skin, fat, and muscle weakness that typically accompany childbirth or significant weight fluctuations. Perhaps the most important change occurs due to the muscle tightening that can be achieved during a tummy tuck. It is kind of like when you suck your belly in to look “skinny” for a picture. The muscles are actually restored to their pre-baby, “younger you” position, thereby flattening the tummy.
A full tummy tuck does all of this…removes excess, hanging skin; removes excess lower abdominal fat; and tightens the rectus muscles. A modified tummy tuck involves some kind of reduction in one or more of these steps. For example, if a person has just a little excess skin, only a small amount of skin will be removed and perhaps the recovery a little easier. Another example of a modified tummy tuck is the case where a patient’s muscles are in good shape and not displaced or stretched to the sides. In this situation, the muscle does not need tightening and so only skin and fat are removed. This definitely gives less recovery or down time.
I recently saw a patient who had a tummy tuck somewhere else and returned to me unhappy with the results. She had come to see me over a year before she had her surgery, and I told her that she needed a full tummy tuck. She, however, decided to have a modified tummy tuck elsewhere and was unhappy with the results. She needed the muscles tightened in order to make her belly flat. So, it is very important that you get the input of an experienced Plastic Surgeon and take the recommendations very seriously.
I do a detailed evaluation of each patient and suggest the best procedure for them. Having a caring, experienced team to do a tummy tuck is critical to the success of the procedure. A surgeon that has done the procedure many times and who is facile in the operating room is another key component. We at Nordberg Plastic Surgery and CVW Surgery Center, have a great complete package of preop, day of surgery, and postop care designed for ease and comfort of the patient. We put ourselves in your shoes.