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Tummy Tuck: step by step

Tummy Tuck: Surgery Details

The procedure begins with anaesthesia and IV sedation. You will be asleep during the surgery.

In a traditional tummy tuck, an incision is made horizontally in the area between the public hairline and the belly button. The amount of excess skin will determine the length of the incision.

The skin will be dissected up toward the rib cage, the muscles are tightened and the belly button is repositioned while excess skin is removed. This helps to dramatically improve the appearance and strength of the abdominal area. Dr. Zeuke may recommend having liposuction along with the tummy tuck to provide optimal results.

After the excess fat and skin are removed, the remaining skin from the upper abdomen is released and pulled down over the open area to close it. Skin is tightened, muscles are tightened as required, and the belly is flatter. Once the procedure is completed, the incision will be sutured and bandaged. You may be given an elastic bandage or compression garment to wear in order to minimise swelling to support the abdomen as it heals.

Following your surgery you will recover in one of our partner hotels. You will receive a care package from us and our staff is available to you while you stay with us.

You will see Dr Zeuke’s expert colleagues the day after your surgery and at specified intervals during the weeks following your surgery. This is done so that the doctor and his team can personally monitor your recovery process, and to ensure that you have the best results possible.

Recovery From Your Procedure

The tummy tuck surgery will leave your abdomen bruised and swollen, which will diminish over a period of one to two weeks. Because patients retain some water following the procedure, there will be some temporary weight gain. This is normal, and will dissipate quickly.

Recovery from tummy tuck surgery requires rest and taking it easy. The first two days following the surgery are usually the most uncomfortable.  After the first two days you’ll notice a dramatic improvement in how you feel. Because of the innovative surgical techniques used by Dr. Zeuke, your discomfort will be easily controlled with prescription medication only.

During your recovery you should avoid strenuous physical activity; this is especially important if your abdominal muscles have been repaired from diastasis recti. You may need to limit your physical activity from four to six weeks.

After your tummy tuck procedure, you will have a flatter, firmer abdominal contour that is proportionate with your individual body type and weight. The actual results will be hidden due to swelling at first, but you will begin to see your new slimmer profile within one to two weeks after surgery. Depending on the surgery, it may take anywhere from several weeks or months to see the final results.

During recovery it is critical that you refrain from smoking. Smoking deprives your body of oxygen, which increases the risk of wound breakdown and infection following the surgery.

The goal of a tummy tuck is to provide you with a tighter, smoother and more attractive abdomen. Your love handles will be smaller, and you will look more fit, youthful and healthier.

A Panniculectomy

While the tummy tuck, or abdominoplasty, is designed to create an abdominal profile that is smoother and firmer, an alternative procedure is a panniculectomy.  This is NOT a tummy tuck, this is an ‘amputation’ of the loose skin in patients who have lost >100lb and have medical problems due to the excessive skin.  This is NOT a cosmetic procedure and the results are not pretty.  This procedure can be performed alone or in combination with a tummy tuck, and is done to remove the skin hanging on the abdomen, called the “pannus” or apron. It runs from below the belly button, and is usually a result of losing significant amounts of weight – approximately 100 pounds or more.  It is often done at the same time as the tummy tuck.

While the tummy tuck tightens the underlying stomach muscles, the paniculectomy only removes the excess skin and fat required for medical reasons.

After losing a significant amount of weight, the patient is left with heavy, loose folds of skin around the abdomen, which end up sagging and losing their elasticity because they have been stretched over a long period of time. This can lead to ongoing problems, including:

  • Difficulty performing daily hygiene
  • Yeast infections or cysts in the folds of the skin
  • Lower back pain
  • Inability to comfortably wear clothing
  • Rashes above the pubic area along the groin and hips

Patients requiring panniculectomy have overcome obesity and have recently lost a significant amount of weight. They also may have post-pregnancy problems with excessive fat that is situated below the belly button. Depending on the amount of excess skin you have and the condition of your abdomen, Dr. Zeuke will determine the best procedure or procedures to meet your specific needs.

Patients are considered candidates for panniculectomy if they have:

  • Excessive fat that presents health problems, like skin rashes, ulcers or other skin disorders
  • Weight that’s been stabilized for at least one year
  • An ongoing diet and exercise plan

Find out more

You can find out more about Tummy Tuck surgery on our blog pages. At London Lipo Institute, we have a number of plastic surgeons experienced in Tummy Tuck surgery. To book a free consultation, please call us on 01923 801601 or email info@londonlipoinstitute.com. Alternatively, please fill out the contact box below and a member of our team will get in touch with you.

To book your free personalised Tummy Tuck surgery consultation:

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