If you’re trying to get a flat tummy after weight loss or your pregnancy, and diet and exercise don’t work for you, you may want to consider a tummy tuck procedure. As a plastic surgeon, I can remove extra fat and excess skin and tighten your abdominal wall muscles.
What is abdominoplasty?
Abdominoplasty is used to remove excess tissue and skin of your abdomen whilst simultaneously strengthening the fascia of your midline. It’s a way to improve the contour and shape of your abdomen. This results in a flat, firmer and well-shaped abdomen.
The most common reasons for tummy tuck surgery are:
- Women, whose skin and muscles have stretched out far too much following pregnancy and childbirth.
- Men and women who have lost a lot of weight and want to get rid of excess skin.
Plastic surgeon Brisbane
All fit, healthy men and women can undergo this type of surgery. Smoking should be avoided. Patients should have a stable weight profile for at least 3 months prior to surgery.
There are two main types of abdominoplasty:
- Full abdominoplasty
- Partial or mini abdominoplasty
Mini abdominoplasty surgeries are typically performed when patients have minor skin excess in the lower abdomen. It’s my personal opinion that liposuction is better if that is the case for you.
Full abdominoplasty is the most common procedure and it’s perfect if you have significant skin sagging and excess fat. I offer this type of surgery to all patients who have the appropriate surgical indications for surgery.
Some patients require only either, and some patients require both. It depends on fat distribution, body type, degree of weight loss, goals of surgery etc.
Where do you operate?
Full abdominoplasty: step by step
An incision is made around the excess skin, from hip bone to hip bone. The scar is placed as low as possible, just above your pubic area. In women, this often involves removing a previous C-section scar. Then we remove the excess fat and skin, and the rectus sheath (6-pack rectus abdominus fascia) is tightened with permanent sutures. The tissue is redraped into position. Finally, we make another incision around your umbilicus or belly button so it can be repositioned into the midline.
Closing the incisions
After reshaping and removing excess skin, the skin is closed and soon after you will wake up in the recovery room.
You will immediately see the result.
The best preparation is to stay fit and healthy, minimising alcohol intake and not smoking. It’s important that you disclose which medications and supplements you’re taking prior to surgery.
Yes, this does not impact the ability to become pregnant.
Yes, stretch marks can be excised with this surgery.
Abdominoplasty recovery explained by Brisbane plastic surgeon Dr Andrew Hadj
Recovery after abdominoplasty
Recovery takes 2 weeks and you’ll be required to wear a body garment for compression for 4 weeks.
Tummy tuck surgery is not painful however the first 2 to 3 days after the procedure will be uncomfortable and you will get analgesia as needed. Most patients stay in hospital between 1 to 3 days.
Every patient will likely have 2 drains that are removed over the course of 1 to 2 weeks.
You will wear a body garment for 4 weeks. Garments are custom and bought prior to the surgery. You will actually wake up after surgery wearing the garment, to make the transition as easy as possible.
Working, bathing, exercising and driving?
Risks and complications
The following risks are associated with tummy tuck surgery:
- Scar (<5%).
- Seroma is body fluid that accumulates in the cavity of the abdomen. This occurs in 5-10% of patients. This may require drainage in the rooms over several weeks to resolve.
- Haematoma is a collection of blood under the skin that would require a return to surgery to repair. This is very uncommon.
Abdominoplasty Brisbane cost explained by plastic surgeon Dr Andrew Hadj
What does the procedure cost?
It’s my firm belief that abdominoplasty should be affordable. Contact my friendly team to discuss costs.
There are many low-cost options both in Australia and overseas and great care should be taken when dealing with a surgeon who is not an ASPS / AHPRA / FRACS recognised Plastic Surgeon.
Unfortunately, many patients confuse plastic surgeons with cosmetic surgeons (as mentioned in the ABC Four Corners report) and the training differs significantly.
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A plastic surgeon has undertaken over 12 years of post-medical specialist training. That’s an important indicator when it comes to choosing a plastic surgeon for tummy tuck surgery. It’s also recommended to always seek second opinions if you have concerns. Ultimately you should feel comfortable with the plastic surgeon you are seeing.
Results are excellent however recurrence -like all surgeries- is possible over time. Repeat procedures may be needed over time.
Yes, recent changes to the Medicare Benefits Schedule (MBS) guidelines have updated the stipulations for surgery for post-partum women. This should be discussed with me during your consultation.
About Dr Andrew Hadj, Plastic surgeon Brisbane
Plastic surgery is the ultimate expression of art and science
Is there any difference between a plastic and cosmetic surgeon
Finding the right surgeon for cosmetic procedures can be a daunting experience if you don’t know what to look for.