The Tummy Tuck Experience - From the Initial Consultation to the Final Result
What occurs during the Tummy Tuck consultation?
During your consultation, your goals and wishes for a flatter, improved abdominal contour and profile will be discussed. Your personal situation will be evaluated and your options for the type of tummy tuck will be discussed.
What Preoperative preparation should I expect for Tummy Tuck surgery?
Your general health will be assessed prior to your tummy tuck procedure. Preoperative tests may be ordered before surgery. On the day of surgery, you will arrive about 1 hour before your actual surgery time. Usually, general anesthesia is used to make you comfortable during the surgery. However, depending on the type of Tummy Tuck surgery, spinal or twilight anesthesia may also be an option. The surgery normally takes about 2 hours. You will have a gauze dressing on your abdomen and an abdominal garment called a binder. After a period of time in the recovery room, you will go home to recover. Occasionally, you may stay overnight at the hospital. Specific postoperative instructions will be given to you and an accompanying family member, friend or caregiver.
What should I expect during the Post-Operative period after a Tummy Tuck?
You will be wearing an abdominal binder underneath your clothing to support your abdomen for about 2 weeks. After surgery, there will be 2 drains in the pubic area to prevent fluid accumulation. The drains are removed in about 1 week. When sleeping, several pillows will need to be placed underneath your back to keep your hips at a 45 degree angle. A pillow underneath the knee is also helpful. Patients are encouraged to get up and walk immediately. You may walk bent over for a few days and gradually you will straighten up and walk upright. Most patients take 7 to 10 days off work. Driving is usually resumed in 5 to 7 days. Light exercise in 2 to 3 weeks. Heavy lifting is not allowed for 3 weeks.
My Result after a Tummy Tuck
You will see your new abdominal contour and profile the next day after the surgery. The swelling will continue to resolve and the final result will appear in a few weeks to a few months. Any numbness of the abdominal skin will continue to improve over months and up to 1 year after the surgery. The incision will continue to heal over a year or more. Scar creams will be recommended to improve the final appearance of the scar.
Your new abdominal contour and profile should be permanent as long as your general weight and general fitness are maintained. Future pregnancy may affect the long term result. As your body ages, there may be some loss of the firmness although this is usually minimal. The majority of patients are very happy with the results of the procedure in restoring their abdomen to a flatter and more toned and normal appearance.
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