An abdominoplasty, commonly known as a tummy tuck, is a procedure to remove excess fat and skin from the abdominal area and tighten the muscles to create a taut, flat, and toned appearance. It is one of the top cosmetic procedures performed in the United States, with 242,939 tummy tuck procedures performed in 2021. It also has a very high success rate and a low rate of complications.
Here is a guide to tummy tuck procedures and where you can go in Atlanta, GA to find a highly skilled tummy tuck plastic surgeon.
Who Needs an Abdominoplasty?
The most common tummy tuck patients are individuals who have lost a significant amount of weight or women who have experienced significant changes in their abdominal area due to pregnancy. Weight loss and pregnancy can both cause the skin to become loose and stretch and can also result in excess skin and fat around the midsection that can be difficult to eliminate with diet and exercise alone.
The Tummy Tuck Procedure
The procedure typically involves a horizontal incision made above the pubic area that extends from hip to hip. The length of the incision may vary depending on the extent of correction needed. The surgeon then separates the skin from the abdominal wall to access the underlying muscles and tightens them with sutures. Then, they perform abdominal dermal lipectomy surgery, which removes excess skin and fat. Then, the remaining skin is pulled down and stitched together. In some cases, liposuction may also be performed to further contour the abdominal area.
How to Prepare for Surgery?
Before the surgery, patients will need to undergo a thorough physical examination to ensure they are a suitable candidate for surgery. The plastic surgeon will review their medical history and medications, which may increase the risk of complications such as heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, and autoimmune diseases.
The doctor will also check for allergies, as patientsneed to be under anesthesia for the duration of the surgery and will also need to take antibiotics to prevent infection, both of which can cause an allergic reaction in some people. Other allergies include allergies to latex material, dressing materials, and metals and dyes.
The surgeon may also provide instructions on how to prepare for the surgery, including dietary changes, medication adjustments, and smoking cessation.
After the tummy tuck procedure, patients will need to rest and avoid strenuous activity for a period of time. The plastic surgeon will provide specific post-operative instructions regarding wound care, medication, and physical activity. The recovery time for a tummy tuck can vary depending on the extent of the surgery, but patients should expect to take several weeks off from work and other activities. During the recovery period, it is important to avoid any activity that may put strain on the abdominal area, such as heavy lifting or vigorous exercise.
Potential Risks and Complications
As with any surgery, there are some potential risks and complications that can occur from abdominoplasty. These may include bleeding, infection, poor wound healing, blood clots, and anesthesia complications. In rare cases, a seroma (collection of fluid under the skin) or deep vein thrombosis (DVT) may occur. It is important to be observant of any suspicious symptoms or changes to your incision site and discuss any concerns or questions with the plastic surgeon.
The Best Tummy Tuck Surgeon in Atlanta, GA
Dr. Greg Mackay is a double board-certified plastic surgeon specializing in abdominoplasty. Dr. Mackay has performed this procedure numerous times in our AAA-certified operating room with an overnight recovery suite, where Dr. Mackay and our team of highly skilled and compassionate medical professionals will see to it that you receive the best possible surgical and post-surgical care.