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Tummy tuck (abdominoplasty)

In the tummy tuck, a surgeon makes an incision from hip to hip, lifts the skin and fat from the abdominal wall, tightens the abdominal muscle wall with sutures and removes the extra fat and skin.

Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty) Side Effects

Infections, bleeding and anesthetic reactions can occur with any surgery, but are rare. Some patients may experience some compromised skin circulation, which may delay wound healing. Persistent skin numbness or fluid collection can occur. More serious problems such as blood clots that travel to the lungs, called a pulmonary embolism, can occur after an abdominoplasty. This is a very rare event as well, but can cause serious health problems or death if left untreated.

Who shouldn't use it: Women who are planning to have children, and all patients who are not at a stable weight, should not contemplate a tummy tuck. Patients who are smokers or have serious medical problems are at risk for complications and poor healing. Patients that are seriously overweight are also at high risk for complications. Finally, patients who don't want their stomach scarred should find another option for trimming their stomach.

Drawbacks: A tummy tuck will leave you with a significant scar, spanning hip to hip and encircling the navel.

Recovery Time For Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty)

Most patients can return to work after a tummy tuck within two weeks. Avoid strenuous exercise and heavy lifting for at least six weeks.

After care for tummy tuck (abdominoplasty): One of the most important actions you can take is to keep your bandages dry and clean after surgery to prevent infection during the first week. Be sure that you are emptying and recording the amounts of drainage accumulating in your tubes.

You should be sure to ambulate gently around the home for the first few weeks at frequent intervals to keep the circulation going and to help prevent complications, but you should not do anything strenuous that causes you heart rate or blood pressure to rise.

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