A tummy tuck is a surgical procedure that extracts surplus fat and tissue from the abdominal region. It is especially helpful for men who retain excess weight in their mid-sections and in women who have undergone multiple pregnancies. Following abdominoplasty, patients can expect a flatter, more contoured and visually satisfying stomach.
Patients considering a tummy tuck can choose either a complete or partial procedure. A full abdominoplasty begins with an incision above the pubic area that extends between the hipbones. The surgeon then makes a second incision to separate the navel from the underlying tissue. Next, the skin is separated and pulled up to the level of the ribs. The surgeon pulls the abdominal muscles together and stitches them into position. The navel is then relocated and stitched into place. The surgeon replaces the skin (excess skin is trimmed) and sutures the original incisions. A complete tummy tuck takes between two and five hours and is usually outpatient based.
If fat deposits are limited to the region below the navel, you may only need a partial abdominoplasty (mini-tummy tuck). In this procedure, a smaller incision is made, leaving the navel in place. The surgeon stretches the flap of skin down, removes excess fat and tissue, and stitches the flap back into place. The partial procedure lasts one to two hours and is usually performed on an outpatient basis.
Immediately following surgery, the incisions are dressed with bandages to keep the skin in place. A tube may be inserted to drain any excess fluid that has collected. Patients may experience some swelling and discomfort, although your doctor can prescribe medication to alleviate these symptoms. Stitches are usually removed five to ten days following surgery, although deeper sutures may take up to three weeks. The specifics of each procedure, as well as duration of hospitalization and type of anesthesia (general or local), will vary among individuals.
Breast Augmentation is a surgical procedure to increase the size and/or alter the shape of a woman’s breasts through the use of an artificial implant. Women may choose to have this operation either as a reconstructive technique following breast surgery, to balance different sized breasts, or to enhance the contours of the body. Whatever the specific purpose, women who undergo breast augmentation can expect larger, firmer, and more visually satisfying breasts.
The surgery begins with an incision, made either in the crease of the breast, the armpit, or the perimeter of the areola (the dark skin surrounding the nipple). The placement of the incision will vary according to body type and the specifics of each procedure. The surgeon enters through the incision and creates a pocket; either underneath the breast tissue or under the chest wall muscle. The implant is placed in either location, centered directly behind the nipple. Finally, the original incision is sutured.
Once the incisions have been closed and taped, the breasts are wrapped and supported by a bandage. Patients are fitted with a surgical bra or support strap that provides support for up to several weeks. Fatigue, soreness, and discomfort are postoperative conditions that are greatly reduced through medication. Swelling gradually subsides and becomes undetectable in a month’s time. Stitches are removed within seven to ten days.
As with any surgical procedure, complications, although rare, do exist. The biggest fear is a leak in the surgical implant. The FDA currently prohibits the use of silicone filled implants except for women involved in specific medical studies. Therefore, in a normal procedure, a leak would involve only a saline water solution. Capsular contraction (a tightening of the scar or capsule surrounding the implant) can occur following a breast augmentation procedure. If this happens, the surgeon either “scores” the scar tissue, or removes the implant and re-inserts another. Other complications include excessive bleeding and infection in the area surrounding the implant. Scars may be evident for several months, but gradually fade. In some cases, the nipples may become hypersensitive or under sensitive for a period after the surgery. In rare instances, the breasts may produce milk for several days after the surgery. To maximize the success of surgery and minimize the risk of complication, always follow your doctor’s instructions for surgical preparation and postoperative care.
Inherited traits often prevent people from achieving their desired body shape. Even years of exercise may not yield significant or noticeable results in certain people. For many, the answer is liposuction, a surgical procedure that extracts fat from specific areas of the body. Following the procedure, patients can expect a slimmer, more shapely figure.
The surgeon begins by inserting a cannula (a slim hollow tube) into small incisions near the area to be recontoured. The cannula is moved through the layers of tissue removing unwanted fat. Once the fat and tissue have been removed, the surgeon stitches the incision. Several techniques exist. Your surgeon will suggest the most appropriate technique and form of anesthesia (epidural block, intravenous sedation or a local or general anesthesia) for you.
After the Surgery
Following surgery, an elastic garment is applied in order to reduce swelling and keep the skin in place. In complex procedures, patients should be monitored closely to make sure no complications occur. Stitches are typically removed in a week’s time and patients return to work after several days.