Cosmetic Surgery

Tummy Tuck Surgery: Procedure Overview

Apr 2 • 3 minute read

The tummy tuck, also called abdominoplasty surgery, is among the most effective cosmetic procedures that help achieve a thinner and more defined waistline. This surgery entails removing excess fat deposits and the resultant hanging skin around the abdomen. The surgeon will also tighten the abdomen's connective tissues and muscles, resulting in a more toned appearance.

The Tummy Tuck Procedure

The tummy tuck procedure your cosmetic surgeon will use varies depending on your desired goals. The following are some of the critical steps involved in any tummy tuck

  • Applying general anesthesia or intravenous sedation

  • Making an incision on the targeted abdominal area

  • Lifting the skin and repairing the weak abdominal muscles

  • Trimming the excess skin and finally suturing it together

  • Closing the incisions with sutures, tape, or skin adhesives

Types of Tummy Tuck Surgeries

A cosmetic surgeon may recommend one of the following tummy tuck surgery procedures to help give you a firmer, flatter, abdominal contour with minimal scarring:

  1. Mini Tummy Tuck: If you're mainly concerned about stretch marks and loose skin below your belly button, then the mini tummy tuck surgery is the ideal option. This procedure involves making one horizontal incision below your belly button, from which your surgeon then effectively tightens the loose abdominal muscles. Surplus skin is also removed to create a flat and firm abdominal wall.

    Mini tummy tuck surgeries usually take a relatively shorter time and will often have a faster recovery time, along with minimal scarring. Expect a thin scar, usually a couple of inches, along with a firmer and flatter lower abdomen.

  2. Full or Classic Tummy Tuck: This tummy tuck addresses both the upper and lower abdomen areas and will typically yield great results in removing excess fat. Your cosmetic surgeon will use either a U-shaped or horizontal incision below the belly button or the navel. Excess fat and skin are then eliminated to achieve a slim abdomen that looks natural.

    The full or classic tummy tuck will typically leave a longer scar due to the extensive incisions required. However, the scar will hide below a swimsuit bottom. This type of tummy tuck benefits includes a considerably smoother, slimmer abdomen with fewer stretch marks and more comfort wearing skirts and pants.

  3. Extended Tummy Tuck: The extended abdominoplasty is the standard tummy tuck that includes recontouring the flanks, hips, or even lateral thigh. It is quite useful for those who have experienced significant weight loss and are now dealing with excessively saggy skin on their abdomen. In most cases, the surgeon will perform liposuction around the flanks during the tummy tuck.

What Type of Aftercare is Required?

Your doctor will discuss your required tummy tuck aftercare with you, including the following:

  • You may have surgical dressing and small tubes to drain excess blood or fluid along with your injection site, which may be left in place for a few days.

  • You may be prescribed pain medication, an antibiotic, and blood-thinning medication.

  • You'll need to wear an abdominal binder to support your stomach for about six weeks.

  • You'll also need to be careful when moving around, so you don't strain your incision line and reopen the wound.
  • You'll need to come to follow-up appointments with your doctor.

Trust a Specialist

Some waistline challenges require much more than exercise and healthy diets. Are you considering getting a tummy tuck to remove the fat and excess skin from your abdomen? Reach out to Newport Beach Plastic Surgeon, Dr. Ghada Y. Afifi.

Dr. Afifi is an experienced surgeon and double board-certified by Newport Beach and Santa Ana to perform plastic surgeries. Get in touch to schedule your consultation today!

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