The abdominal area and flanks (love handles) are some of the body areas men and women struggle with the most. It’s difficult to tone your stomach muscles and get rid of stubborn fat, especially following excessive weight loss or pregnancy, which may have left you with loose, sagging skin in multiple areas as well. A tummy tuck, or abdominoplasty, is an effective way to achieve the flatter and firmer stomach you’ve been working toward through diet and exercise.
If you’re interested in a tummy tuck or another body contouring procedure, please contact our board-certified plastic surgeon in Bryn Mawr today at 484-222-0010 to schedule your consultation. Main Line Plastic Surgery serves clients throughout Pennsylvania including Bryn Mawr, Philadelphia, Bala Cynwyd, and South Jersey.
See BEFORE-AND-AFTER PHOTOS of tummy tuck.
When it comes to a tummy tuck and other plastic surgery procedures, there are several important details you need to know including:
- What Is a Tummy Tuck?
- What Is a Drain-Free Tummy Tuck?
- Tummy Tuck vs. Mini-Tummy Tuck
- Candidates for a Tummy Tuck
- How to Prepare for Your Procedure
- What to Expect During Recovery
- Financing Your Tummy Tuck
- Questions to Ask Our Plastic Surgeon
- Schedule Your Tummy Tuck Consultation in Bryn Mawr
Abdominoplasty is one of the top five plastic surgeries performed in the U.S. each year. The procedure involves removing excess skin and fat in the upper and lower abdomen along with repositioning or tightening the stomach muscles. The belly button may require some repositioning depending on the extent of your tummy tuck. This plastic surgery is an effective way to regain your pre-pregnancy body or restore your body after weight loss.
A mommy makeover is a popular combination surgery where procedures to improve the breast, and a tummy tuck are performed at once.
A tummy tuck can address several issues with your figure, but some of our patients struggle with loose skin on multiple parts of their body such as the arms, thighs, and buttocks. In that case, Dr. Jean may recommend doing an upper or lower body lift as well. Women interested in a tummy tuck to counteract the effects of pregnancy typically have some degree of breast sagging too.
Appropriate for some patients, a drain-free tummy tuck (as the name implies) is performed without the need for drains as with a traditional tummy tuck. This is performed by using liposuction of the abdomen with limited skin elevation and progressive tension sutures. Recovery is somewhat quicker than traditional tummy tuck.
Schedule a consultation to find out if you are a candidate for a drain-free tummy tuck.
Some of our patients at Main Line Plastic Surgery may be better candidates for a mini-tummy tuck. This less-invasive version of the abdominoplasty focuses on the area below your belly button and is best for women with minimal fat and loose skin in the lower abdomen and pubic region. The mini-tummy tuck tightens the lower abdominal tissues but won’t address any concerns you have above the belly button. This scaled-down tummy tuck may be less invasive, but you’ll still need to take it easy during your recovery.
See BEFORE-AND-AFTER photos of a mini-tummy tuck.
Dr. Jean can sometimes perform this procedure with local anesthesia, so you are awake, but you won’t be able to see or feel anything. The mini-abdominoplasty requires less recovery time and leaves you with less discomfort than a full tummy tuck. Candidates for the mini-tummy tuck have tried to tone their lower abdomen through exercise with little to no success.
Both of these options have benefits, and the right one for you will depend on the extent and location of loose skin and stubborn fat you have in your abdomen as well as the need for muscle tightening.
During your consultation with our plastic surgeon, you may find that laser-assisted liposuction (SmartLipo®) is a better option for you, as it gets rid of unwanted fat with the added benefit of skin tightening due to the heat of the laser promoting the production of collagen.
You need to be in good health and your weight to be stable to qualify for a body contouring procedure. A tummy tuck or any form of plastic surgery is not a substitute for weight loss and exercise. Candidates must be at least 18 years old and have realistic expectations for what we can achieve with a tummy tuck. We suggest having your procedure several months before a big event or swimsuit season, so you can be recovered to show off your full results.
We recommend women interested in this option don’t plan on having more children, are fully recovered from childbirth (six months after giving birth), and are finished breastfeeding. This is because your abdominal wall and muscles need time to heal after pregnancy. If you do become pregnant after a tummy tuck (abdominoplasty), it will not affect your pregnancy, but some of your results may not stay. You may need additional procedures after the pregnancy to regain your optimal body.
Tummy tuck candidates should be non-smokers or be willing to quit smoking six weeks prior to and six weeks after the procedure and have a friend or family member available to help during the recovery period.
Dr. Jean will discuss what steps you can take to prepare for your tummy tuck during your initial consultation. If you are a smoker, you’ll need to quit for six weeks before and after your plastic surgery to ensure there aren’t any added risks. You’ll need at least one week away from work at a non-physical job; many women require two weeks off. It will take 4-6 weeks before returning to strenuous physical activity.
View sample results of tummy tuck surgery.
Find a friend or family member to drive you home and stay with you the first 24-48 hrs after surgery. It is also helpful to have someone available during the following days to help you do things around the house and make sure you’re getting enough fluids and nutrition. If you have small children, you won’t be able to lift or care for them for several days, so it is best to arrange support to help care for them for at least one week after your surgery.
There are a few ways you can prepare your home for the recovery process. Make some of your favorite meals and freeze them so you won’t have to worry about cooking. You can get your room ready with extra pillows (four pillows: two to three for behind your back and one to two for under your knees) and fill any prescriptions Dr. Jean gives you beforehand. If your home has multiple levels, select a level to recover on and bring everything you need to that level, as you will not want to be going up and down stairs multiple times a day.
You’ll likely notice a difference immediately following your tummy tuck and continue to see improvements as you heal. Final appearance is not present for six months. We recommend wearing loose-fitting clothing that won’t irritate the incision area or cause discomfort by pressing on your abdomen. You may have a compression garment or binder to help with swelling and bruising as well for the first six weeks.
Dr. Jean uses the Silagen® silicone incision strips to promote optimal healing. These strips reduce the visibility of incision lines and are made of 100% silicone. They retain moisture in the area and help regulate collagen production — the natural protein in your body that strengthens your skin.
We also use vitametica recovery support, a combination of vitamins and supplements specifically designed to speed healing and decrease recovery time after cosmetic surgery. Silagen silicone strips and Vitametica recovery support vitamins are provided as a part of your procedure at no extra charge.
You’ll need to take it easy for two weeks but will likely be able to go back to work after a one to two weeks depending on the nature of you job. Your full tummy tuck results will not be visible until six months after your plastic surgery when your body has completely recovered.
Every tummy tuck is unique to the patient, which causes the cost to fluctuate. We don’t want a cost to prevent you from getting the figure you’ve been working toward and can help you finance your tummy tuck. We take cash, check, and major credit cards, or can help you with CareCredit®, a line of credit used for medical and cosmetic procedures and treatments.
At Main Line Plastic Surgery, we believe in full transparency, so you know what your cost will be upfront.
Many men and women have questions about the tummy tuck process, which can seem overwhelming. We’ll discuss all of the details and take time to answer any questions you may have during your consultation.
Some important question to ask your plastic surgeon prior to tummy tuck (abdominoplasty) include:
- Are you board-certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery?
- How often do you perform tummy tucks?
- Can I see before-and-after photos of your previous patients?
- Am I a good candidate?
- How can I best prepare for my procedure?
- Who will see me for my follow up visits?
- Will you be available for any questions or concerns I have during recovery?
Dr. Jean and our experienced staff are dedicated to our patients. Our top priority is your safety and satisfaction with your results. Our plastic surgeon will spend 45 minutes or more with you during your initial consultation to discuss all of your options as well as answer any questions you may have. Our cosmetic coordinator will provide you with an all inclusive quote, as well as scheduling and financing details. We treat our patients as we would want to be treated and are available 24/7 to our patients, especially during recovery. If you call after our hours of operation, the line is redirected to Dr. Jean’s cell phone.
If you’re interested in a tummy tuck, please contact Main Line Plastic Surgery in Pennsylvania today at 484-222-0010 to see if an abdominoplasty is right for you. Our board-certified plastic surgeon serves clients throughout Pennsylvania including Bryn Mawr, Philadelphia, Bala Cynwyd, and South Jersey.