Abdominoplasty aftercare follows a tummy tuck procedure. The abdominoplasty procedure is used to improve the appearance of the abdomen by surgically removing excess skin and fat from the area and often tightening the abdominal muscles.
A tummy tuck is a cosmetic surgery procedure used to remove excess skin and fat from the abdomen, and to tighten the connective tissue in the abdomen. Your plastic surgeon will reposition the remaining skin so you get a more toned look.
You could decide to have a tummy tuck if you’re suffering with excess fat or skin around your bellybutton. Or if your lower abdominal wall is weak.
But a tummy tuck also boosts your body image.
Why you may have excess fat
There are several reasons you might have excess fat, poor skin elasticity, or weakened connective tissue in your abdomen.
- You’ve changed your weight significantly can be caused by e.g. pregnancy, abdominal surgery, aging, and your natural body type.
A tummy tuck can remove loose, excess skin and fat, and tighten weak fascia. A tummy tuck can remove stretch marks and excess skin in the lower abdomen below the bellybutton. But, note. A tummy tuck cannot correct stretch marks anywhere else.
If you’ve had a C-section before, your plastic surgeon may use your existing C-section scar as part of your tummy tuck scar.
They can also combine a tummy tuck with other body contouring procedures, such as breast surgery. If you’ve had fat removed from your abdomen, then tying this in with a tummy tuck to remove excess skin is popular.
A tummy tuck might not be right for everyone. Your doctor might not recommend it if you:
- Plan on losing a significant amount of weight
- If you are considering pregnancy in the future
- Any severe chronic condition, e.g. heart disease or diabetes
- Body mass index 30+
- You’re a smoker
- Have had abdominal surgery before as this could leave you with significant scar tissue that could cause complications
A tummy tuck poses various risks, including:
- Accumulation of fluid in pockets beneath your skin. This expands like a balloon and is called a seroma. Leaving drainage tubes in situ after surgery can help to reduce the risk of this excess fluid. Plus, your doctor can remove fluid after surgery using a needle and syringe.
- Sometimes areas along the incision line heal poorly or separate after surgery. This might be due to an infection, so your doctor may give you antibiotics during and after surgery.
- Unexpected scarring. A tummy tuck scar is permanent. So, your surgeon will typically place it along your bikini line because it’s easily hidden. The visibility and length of your scar varies from person to person.
- The tissue in your abdominal area might get damaged or die during a tummy tuck. Smoking increases your risk of this happening. If the damage is significant, the tissue might heal on its own or require a surgical touch-up procedure.
- You may experience a decrease in skin sensation after your surgery. This is usually temporary and should improve over time. But it’s not uncommon to feel numbness and tingling.
- Abdominoplasty Aftercare helps minimise the risks.
A tummy tuck is a major surgery that can cause bleeding, infection and an adverse reaction to anesthesia.
How you prepare for abdominoplasty
You will talk to a plastic surgeon about a tummy tuck. During your first visit, your plastic surgeon will probably:
-Discuss your surgical goals -Evaluate your belly skin quality and thickness -Assess your abdominal muscle tone
- Review your medical history and be prepared to answer questions about your current and past medical conditions. Note any medications you’re taking or have recently, and surgeries you’ve had before.
- If you are considering a tummy tuck, be prepared to answer questions about your weight gain and loss history. Let your doctor know if you are allergic to any medications.
- The doctor will examine your abdomen to determine your treatment options. The doctor might also take pictures of your stomach and keep them on your medical record.
- What are your expectations for the surgery? Why do you want a tummy tuck? What are you hoping to achieve aesthetically? Are you aware of the benefits and risks of the surgery? Keep in mind that previous abdominal surgery may limit your results.
Before a tummy tuck you’ll need to:
- Smoking can have a negative effect on your skin’s ability to heal properly and increases your risk of tissue damage. If you smoke, your doctor may recommend that you stop smoking before and after surgery.
- You’ll likely need to avoid taking aspirin, anti-inflammatory drugs and herbal supplements, as these can increase bleeding.
- Ideally, you will maintain a stable weight for at least 12 months before having a tummy tuck. If you are severely overweight, your doctor will recommend you lose weight before the operation. If you lose a significant amount of weight after the procedure, your results may be diminished.
- Make arrangements for help during your recovery and abdominoplasty aftercare. Plan for someone to drive you home after you leave the hospital and stay with you for at least the first night of your recovery at home.
What you can expect with abdominoplasty
A tummy tuck is a surgery that is done in a hospital or outpatient surgical facility. During a tummy tuck, you will be under general anesthesia. This means you will be completely unconscious and unable to feel pain. In some cases, you might be given a pain-relieving medication and be moderately sedated.
Before your procedure
There are a variety of different tummy tuck procedures, depending on your individual goals and the degree of change you would like to see. During a typical tummy tuck, your plastic surgeon will make incisions. They will cut out most of the skin and fat between your bellybutton and pubic hair. They’ll go in a horizontal, oval or elliptical shape. The connective tissue (fascia) that lies over the abdominal muscles will then be stitched tight.
The excess skin removed and your procedure type will determine the shape and length of the cut. They will stitch together the incision above the pubic hair and will leave a scar that falls along the natural crease within the bikini line.
Your plastic surgeon will also reposition the skin around your bellybutton. Your surgeon will bring your bellybutton out through a small incision and sutured (stitched) back into its normal position.
You might be given an antibiotic during the procedure to prevent infection.
The average procedure typically takes about two to three hours.
After the procedure, tell me about Abdominoplasty Aftercare
After a tummy tuck, you may have surgical dressing covering your abdominal incision and bellybutton. They may place small tubes along the incision site to drain any excess blood or fluid.
You will be encouraged to walk as soon as possible after surgery to help prevent the formation of blood clots.
You’ll likely be prescribed pain medication for the period directly following your surgery. It’s normal to experience swelling in the surgical area.
Your doctor will tell you how long to keep your drains in place and when to stop taking your antibiotic.
After your surgery, your doctor may prescribe a blood thinner to help you heal.
You will wear a compression garment to support your abdominals for between four and six weeks post surgery. This binder will help prevent fluid buildup and provide support for your stomach while you heal. Your doctor will explain how to care for your scar.
You will need to be careful when moving around for the first six weeks after your surgery. You will also need to avoid positions that strain your incision line — such as quickly bending at the waist — to prevent the reopening of the wound.
You will need to schedule regular follow-up visits. Ask your doctor how often you need to be seen.
What else you should do to get the best results from your abdominoplasty surgery
A few days after your surgery, you should invest in MLD massages. And go to an expert in post plastic surgery aftercare like us. Trust us when we want you back in after a day or so, and then when we knock this frequency back, as your healing improves, trust us again. We work at the rate your unique body needs.
How does Abdominoplasty Aftercare help our health?
By keeping your lymphatic system working with a light pumping pressure, our team will minimise your risk fo being infected. Think about a stagnant pond. If your swelling doesn’t move on, then you can expect similar results. And then you’ll be bent over in pain. And at this point, it’s going to be more difficult and more costly to nurse you back to health. Infection will also be likely to affect the quality of your scar, i.e. you’ll be left with more of a mark, even though these fade over time.
When you come to us, we’ll also give you advice on what to do at home during this whole healing process. This means that the amount of time that your block packages last is extended. We base our business on great results and fantastic reviews. Not ripping you off.
One simple piece of advice. Drink water and do some activity. Just be sensible of what exercise is right for your body. Walking is great as it stimulates your lymphatic system, but listen to your body and stop when you’re tired. But of course, no heavy lifting. And don’t bath. Even though you’ll feel this helps by keeping clean, it will make it more difficult for your wound to heal.