Abdominoplasty, or a tummy tuck, is performed to remove to excess skin and fat from the anterior abdomen, and to reshape the abdomen. Whether it’s after having children or losing a large amount of weight, there is excess skin that doesn’t go away with diet and exercise. Often times, particularly after having children, the rectus muscles (the six-pack muscles) become stretched apart, and this stretching is also resistant to exercise. Abdominoplasty surgery addresses this muscle separation by tightening the muscles back together. In most patients, abdominoplasty can be combined with liposuction to address specific areas that are also resistant to diet and exercise.
Surgery is typically performed as an outpatient procedure, which means you go home the same day as your surgery. After surgery your pain is controlled by prescription pain medication. You will be placed into an elastic abdominal binder before you awaken from surgery, which you will keep on until you follow up with Dr. Shore the day after your surgery. You will also have two drains in place (one on each side), to reduce the risk of developing a fluid collection. These drains typically are removed one to two weeks after your surgery.
For several weeks afterwards, your activity will be limited from lifting anything heavy or performing excessively strenuous activity (e.g., sit-ups). You will have swelling afterwards, and your incisions may have a small amount of bleeding from them. The scars are permanent, and will at first be noticeable, but almost all of them fade with time. Your incision will be covered with Steri-Strips, or white surgical bandages, which will either fall off on their own, or which Dr. Shore will remove later in the office.