Tummy Tuck in Denver, CO
A tummy tuck, also known as abdominoplasty, is a surgery to remove excess fat and skin from the stomach area, and can also tighten the underlying muscles to provide a smoother, flatter abdomen.
Women who have had multiple pregnancies or individuals who have lost significant weight often find that even a rigorous diet and exercise regimen will not result in a flat stomach. While there are other surgical and non-surgical methods for improving your abdomen, a tummy tuck is unique in that it is the only procedure that removes excess skin and repairs the muscle separation that often occurs after pregnancy or excessive weight gain.
How We Perform Abdominoplasty
A tummy tuck is usually performed under an epidural or possibly general anesthesia and usually takes approximately 4 hours. Although it is one of the most extensive types of plastic surgery, it can now usually be done on an outpatient basis.
Dr. Hunsicker begins with an incision above the pubic area that extends between the hipbones. This incision is placed along the same lines as your bathing suit or undergarment, so the scar remains hidden when clothed. A second incision is made around the belly button.
Next, the skin is separated up to the level of the ribs. Dr. Hunsicker will take care to stitch the abdominal muscles back into place and remove excess fat from under the skin flap. The flap is then pulled down, the belly button is repositioned and the excess skin trimmed off. Tubes are inserted into the incisions to allow excess fluid to drain. She will typically use a combination of internal sutures (that will dissolve on their own) and Dermabond (a surgical “super-glue”) on the skin surface. This combination helps to minimize scaring.
Before & After Tummy Tuck in Littleton, CO
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Are there alternatives to tummy tuck surgery?
If fat deposits are limited to the region below the belly button, you may only need a partial abdominoplasty (mini-tummy tuck). This is also an outpatient procedure done under IV sedation or general anesthesia that lasts about two hours. In this procedure, a smaller incision is made, leaving the belly button in place. The surgeon stretches the flap of skin down, removes excess fat and tissue, and stitches the flap back into place. Tubes are inserted into the incisions to allow excess fluid to drain.
What happens after my tummy tuck?
Following surgery, patients will experience some swelling and discomfort that can be alleviated with the pain pump and prescription pain medication. Your pain pump is typically removed in 3-4 days. You will need to remain bent over to about 90 degrees at the waist for several days as to not tear open your incision.
You will also need to take care to “milk” your drain tubes and measure the drainage. These drain tubes will be removed once drainage has subsided to appropriate levels, usually 7-14 days. A surgical garment will need to be worn for at least 3 weeks after your surgery. You should plan to take about 2 weeks off work for this procedure and be prepared for lifting and exercise limitations for about 6 weeks.
Can a tummy tuck be combined with other body contouring procedures?
Yes, in fact, it is common to combine tummy tuck surgeries with breast procedures (breast augmentations or breast lifts). Also, patients who have experienced massive weight loss may undergo additional "lift" procedures of the breasts, thighs, back, and upper arms.
Can a tummy tuck help me lose weight?
It is important to understand that body contouring procedures, like a tummy tuck, are not weight-loss methods. Rather, they are completed after weight loss as a means to fine-tune the contours of the body.
Learn More About Tummy Tuck Surgery in South Denver
Dr. Lisa M. Hunsicker has been practicing medicine since 1995. Since 2001, Revalla Plastic Surgery & Medical Aesthetics has been providing patients in the Denver, Morrison, Littleton and Colorado Springs area with excellent, individualized cosmetic surgery results. We encourage you to call us for a personal consultation with Dr. Hunsicker. Contact us at 720-283-2500 or online to schedule a consultation with Dr. Hunsicker. Together, you can determine if you are a good candidate for the tummy tuck.