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Tummy tuck, also known as abdominoplasty is a cosmetic procedure that is done to make the abdomen firmer and also thinner. The procedure involves the removal of excess fat and skin that might have developed in the abdomen. The most affected part of the abdomen is the middle and lower abdomen. The purpose of the surgical procedure is to help tighten the muscles and fascia of the abdominal wall. It’s mostly recommended to patients that are morbidly obese, and find it difficult losing their abdominal fat through diet, change in lifestyle and exercise.  It’s important to know that going for a tummy tuck should not be considered if you’ve not tried to lose weight through other means.  A lot of weight can be lost just by changing your diet, and following a new diet strictly. In addition to this, engaging yourself in regular exercise also helps significantly in weight. People with a protruded abdomen, but with a normal weight don’t have to undergo the tummy tuck procedure. Below are some of the reasons why people develop a protruded abdomen:

  • Age: Fat tends to accumulate in the abdomen as one age, especially in people that don’t eat healthily or exercise regularly. This fat does deposit in the middle and lower part of the abdomen.
  • Heredity: Individuals with a family history of the protruded abdomen have a high risk of also developing a big abdomen. This can be prevented by working out the muscles of the abdomen. An example of an exercise that can help include sit-ups
  • Pregnancy: Pregnancy does change the body of a woman especially after childbirth. This is why most women tend to develop a big abdomen after giving birth to a couple of kids. The only way to fix this is by going for moderate to intensive work out before and after childbirth.
  • Diseases: There are some conditions that lead to rapid weight gain. Examples of such diseases include hypothyroidism and polycystic ovarian syndrome. People affected with this disease need to be on a healthy and strict diet and also exercise regularly to keep and maintain a normal
  • Previous surgery: People that have had surgical procedures carried out on their abdomen tend to develop a loose and saggy abdomen. This can be fixed with a tummy tuck procedure.

What Is Tummy Tuck?

Tummy tuck, also referred to as abdominoplasty is a procedure that is done to flatten the abdomen. This is achieved by removing the excess fat and skin that might be on the abdomen. The muscles and of the abdominal wall are tightened after the excess tissues have been removed. This procedure is a major surgery, which is why individuals looking to go for it must educate themselves about it. As earlier mentioned, a tummy tuck should never be the first option to go for, when trying to eliminate the excess weight and skin in your abdomen. It should only be considered when other measures such as diet, exercise, changes in lifestyle have been exhausted.

Is Tummy Tuck A Major Surgery?

A tummy tuck is a major surgery, and it’s often associated with a lot of risks and complications. Studies have shown that tummy tuck has higher risks than other forms of cosmetic procedures. The complications are higher for patients that are undergoing tummy tuck in combination with other procedures. It has been shown that women represent about 97% of the total number of tummy tuck procedures done. Some of the common risk factors associated with this procedure include diabetes, smoking, excess consumption of alcohol and so on.

Who Performs Tummy Tuck?

A tummy tuck is carried out by a plastic surgeon. This procedure cannot be performed by just any physician, but an individual that has specialized in plastic surgery. You should ensure that whoever you’d be consulting for this procedure is licensed under the board of plastic surgeons in your state, or country. This can be easily checked online, by visiting their online directory. Plastic surgery is a specialty under surgery. This field involves the restoration, reconstruction, and alteration of the human body. This can be done to improve the function of the tissue, organ, or for aesthetic purposes. Plastic surgery can be divided into two categories, which includes reconstructive surgery and cosmetic surgery. Reconstructive surgery is mainly done to improve the functions of an organ or tissue. Examples include craniofacial surgery, hand surgery, microsurgery and the treatment of burns. On the other hand, cosmetic surgery is done to improve the aesthetics or appearance. Tummy tuck falls under the category of cosmetic surgery, because it’s done to improve the appearance of the individual, and also for health purposes. People with protruded abdomen are prone to a lot of diseases, such as diabetes mellitus, hypertension and so on.

What Abdominoplasty Can’t Do for You?

Abdominoplasty involves the removal of excess fat and skin from the middle and lower abdomen. However, it’s not a weight loss program. This procedure is only recommended for people that are morbidly obese, and need to lose the excess fat tissue and skin in their abdomen. A tummy tuck should only be considered when the other measures to lose weight, have been exhausted. Some of the measures that should be considered before going for a tummy tuck include regular exercise, change in diet and lifestyle. As an illustration, it’d be best to cut down or totally stop the consumption of soda drinks, alcohol, fast foods and so on. In addition, going to the gym or running for at least 30 minutes every day would go a long way in losing a significant amount of weight. Some of the things a tummy tuck would not do for you is eliminating stretch marks unless they’re part of the skin that is cut out during the procedure. A tummy tuck is major surgery, as mentioned earlier, that bears a lot of health risks and complications.

Who Should Not Consider Going For A Tummy Tuck?

Although a tummy tuck is helpful in losing excess abdominal fat and skin. It’s not meant for everyone, due to the various complications and risk associated with it. Below are some of the reasons why you shouldn’t go for a tummy tuck:

  1. Overweight: This might sound strange, but it isn’t advisable for people that have a body mass index above 30, to go for a tummy tuck. This is mainly because of the likelihood of them gaining the fat back. The best way to go about this is to change their diet, get them on a weight loss program, then proceed to a tummy tuck, which would help them remove the fat and excess skin on their abdomen that they can’t get rid of through these measures. It’s important to know that the discipline to eat healthily and exercise doesn’t come with a tummy Patients that undergo the procedure without having the discipline to do these things would easily gain the excess weight back within a short period of time.
  2. Individuals with a chronic heart condition: It’s dangerous for persons affected with chronic heart conditions to go for a tummy tuck. This is because of the various complications that are associated with the procedure.
  3. Women that have plans to get pregnant: It’s crucial for women that still have plans to get pregnant, to avoid getting a tummy tuck. Women tend to amass a lot of weight after giving birth to their babies. Pregnancy tends to separate and relax the abdominal muscles, especially the rectus abdominis. It’d make more sense to undergo this procedure after you’ve given birth to all your kids, and you don’t have any intention to get pregnant anymore. The procedure helps to tighten the abdominal muscles together.
  4. Weight loss problem: People that are still struggling with weight loss should not go for a tummy tuck. This is because it’s easy for them to amass fat and develop extra skin in their abdomen after the procedure. You should only consider abdominoplasty when you’ve successfully lost weight, but need to remove the excess skin and fat in your abdomen that is difficult to remove through working out.

Who Should Consider Going For A Tummy Tuck?

A tummy tuck is a major type of surgery. It comes with a lot of risks and complications, which is why it should only be done when there is a need for it. A tummy tuck isn’t shouldn’t be an option when trying to lose weight. As earlier mentioned, a tummy tuck is only recommended for morbidly obese people. Below are some of the criteria for people that should go for an abdominoplasty:

  • Overall good health: It’s important for people going for a tummy tuck to be in good health. Individuals affected with chronic heart conditions should not undergo a tummy This is because they have a high risk of suffering from complications.
  • Smokers: Studies have shown that smoking increases the risk of developing complications. On the other hand, non-smokers have a low risk of developing complications from a tummy This is why this procedure is contraindicated for smokers.
  • Weight: Tummy tuck is contraindicated for people with an unstable weight. This is mainly because it’d be easy for them to accumulate fat and extra skin after the procedure has been done. As earlier mentioned, you should only consider tummy tuck when you have developed the discipline to maintain and keep a healthy weight.

 

How Much Does Tummy Tuck Cost?

A tummy tuck is a major surgical procedure that has to be performed by a licensed and experienced plastic surgeon. According to 2017 statistics, from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons, the average cost of tummy tuck is around $5,992. However, the value of this procedure usually varies due to a lot of factors. Some of the factors that play a role in determining the cost include the following:

  1. Experience of the plastic surgeon: This is one of the most critical factors to be considered when going for a tummy tuck. It’s crucial to go for a plastic surgeon that has a massive wealth of experience performing this type of surgery. The first thing to do is to check if the surgeon is licensed with the board of plastic surgeons in your state or country. It has been shown that surgeons with more experience tend to have a high success rate, as compared to those with little or no experience. Studies have also indicated that the majority of patients that opt for a tummy tuck, usually don’t mind paying the extra cost of getting a skilled and experienced plastic surgeon. However, you must be aware that experienced plastic surgeons generally charge a bit more than those with little experience. Patients shouldn’t be deterred by this, as no one can place a price on good health.
  2. Location of the hospital: It has been shown that services in city hospitals such as New York, London are generally more expensive in small cities and towns. The location of the hospital plays a significant role in the cost of the procedure. One of the ways of reducing the cost of the procedure is by going for the procedure in another location if you can cope with the stress.
  3. Type of facility: The kind of facility the surgeon uses for the procedure also contributes to the cost of the procedure. As an illustration, a surgeon that pays a huge amount of money for rent, for the hospital space would definitely charge his/her patients more money, that a surgeon that doesn’t have to pay as much for rent. In addition, the type of technology, and comfortability that is available in the hospital would also affect the cost of their procedures. The more modern the equipment available in a hospital, the more they might charge patients. All these services are provided to make their patients as comfortable as possible, and to ensure a smooth surgical procedure. The majority of patients don’t mind paying extra, to have a successful tummy tuck.
  4. Anesthesia: This procedure is done under anesthesia. There is various type of anesthesia. The average price of the procedure above does not include the cost of anesthesia. Patients should have a conversation with the surgeon on the type of anesthesia that should be used. There are various types of anesthesia, which also varies in price.
  5. Aftercare: It’s essential to opt for a hospital that offers aftercare. Some of the aftercare services include medications and care after the surgery. This is often added to the total cost of the procedure.

Some of the additional cost that may be included in this include the following:

  • Surgeon’s fee
  • Cost of prescribed medications
  • Cost of anesthesia
  • Medical tests
  • Post-surgery garments
  • Cost of hospital and surgical facility.

What Should You Expect During Consultation for Tummy Tuck?

It’s typical to have a consultation with your surgeon.  The purpose of the consultation is for the patient to discuss with the surgeon on what he/she wants, and how the physician would go about it. Below are the other things that are commonly addressed during a tummy tuck consultation:

  • Your goal: Patients should endeavor to make their goals clear to the plastic surgeon. The discussion may involve how you want your tummy to look after the surgery, and if it’d be achievable. It would be disappointing to go under the knife, to wake to a body you don’t appreciate.
  • Health status: It’s essential for the physician to know the health status of the patient. Information that might be asked by the physician usually includes the medical and family history of the patient. The physician has to know if the patient has any allergies, or if the patient has undergone any form of surgery in the past.
  • Lifestyle: There are some habits that are contraindicated if a patient is to undergo a tummy As an illustration, smokers are not allowed to undergo a tummy tuck. This is mainly because of the health risks and complications that are associated with the condition. The patient has to open up to the physician about the types of vitamins, herbal supplements and if he/she drinks alcohol.
  • The physician would take the photograph of the patient. This is done so that a comparison can be made between the before-the-procedure and after-the-procedure.
  • The physician would also recommend the right line of treatment to the patient.
  • The surgeon also has to explain the various risk and potential complications that may be associated with a tummy

Patients must understand that the success of the procedure depends largely on how open they’re with their physician. Physicians must also ensure that the patient fully understands the procedure, including the risks and potential complications.

Is Tummy Tuck Covered by Insurance?

A tummy tuck is an expensive procedure. So a lot of people would want to know if the procedure is covered by their insurance. However, a tummy tuck is a cosmetic procedure, and it isn’t covered by insurance. Apart from the surgeon’s charges, you must also prepare your mind to pay for anesthesia, the surgical facilities, prescription, and medications. All these should be done to have a smooth and successful procedure.

                  What Are The Cons Of Tummy Tuck?

The decision to undergo tummy tuck is mostly personal. However, it’s best to make this decision, after understanding the benefits and risks associated with the condition. Below are some of the risks and complications that are associated with a tummy tuck:

  1. The overall health of patient: It’s important for anyone considering this procedure to be in good health. People with some form of health impairment have a high risk of developing complications. As an illustration, individuals with chronic heart conditions are usually advised against going for this procedure.
  2. Scars: Tummy tuck is a major Skill plastic surgeons usually try to make the incision marks as hidden and as little as possible. This is done by hiding the incisions mark under the bikini line. However, not all physicians can be as skilled. Some surgeons might make a mistake, that might lead to incision marks that might disfigure the abdomen of the patient. It’s important to know that this rarely occurs.
  3. Infection: One of the most common complications of surgery is an infection, regardless of how minor the procedure is. A tummy tuck isn’t an exception. For example, patients that undergo breast surgeries often present with cellulitis.
  4. Bleeding: This mostly occurs in patients with clotting problems or those on blood thinning drugs. Patients that fall into this category might present with conditions such as low blood pressure, sweaty and clammy skin, impaired mental function and so on.
  5. Hematoma: A hematoma is the accumulation of blood outside a blood vessel. This can occur as a result of diseases, or injury, due to trauma or surgery. A hematoma is initially in fluid form, before it spreads between the tissues where it accumulates, coagulate before blood is reabsorbed into blood vessels. This is a common occurrence in plastic surgical procedures. Hematomas can be seen under the surface of the skin, and can also be felt. They do feel like a lump under the skin. In a lot of cases, the hematoma eventually dissolves. However, they sometimes don’t dissolve and would keep growing. In this case, the hematoma might have to be surgically removed, and the affected part of the body repaired and cleaned
  6. Deep vein thrombosis: This is a common condition that is associated with surgeries. It’s a condition in which blood clot develops in one or more than deep veins of the body. This mostly occurs in the legs. Deep vein thrombosis usually presents with signs and symptoms such as swelling of the leg, pain in the affected leg, and discoloration of the legs. There are also cases where patients don’t present any symptom. This condition can become severe, especially when the clots break loose, travels through the bloodstream and obstructs important blood vessels in the body, such as the pulmonary vessels.
  7. Pain: Patients might present with pain that persists, even for a long time after the surgical procedure.
  8. Loss of skin: As earlier explained, a tummy tuck involves the removal of excess fatty tissue and skin from the abdomen. However, there are situations in which a surgeon might cut off needed skin from the patient. The surgeon might then have to stitch the skins together, which would disfigure the appearance of the patient.

Recovery

The surgeon might apply bandages and dressings on the incisions. This is to help reduce the swelling and also support the abdomen. Tubes might also be placed under the skin of the patient, to help drain any excess fluid that might deposit under the skin. The doctor would give some instructions to the patient, on how to go about life after the procedure.

References

8 Things You Should Know About A Tummy Tuck—From Someone Who Got One. (2019). Retrieved from https://www.prevention.com/weight-loss/a20514485/8-things-you-should-know-about-a-tummy-tuck-from-someone-who-got-one/

Tummy Tuck. (2019). Retrieved from https://www.plasticsurgery.org/cosmetic-procedures/tummy-tuck

Tummy Tuck® Belt : Official Site : Slim away belly fat with the Tummy Tuck Slimming System. (2019). Retrieved from https://www.tummytuckbelt.com/

 

 

 

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