Abdominoplasty, often called a “tummy tuck,” is a popular procedure used to flatten and shape the abdomen by removing excess fat and skin and tightening muscles. Dr. Wortham has been performing tummy tucks with excellent cosmetic results for many years. Our patients love the look of their new flat stomachs after surgery under the exceptional care by the doctors and staff at Cosmetic Surgical Arts.
A tummy tuck leaves patients with a flatter, more toned abdominal area that fits the natural contours of their bodies. It can improve a patient’s appearance and confidence by helping them look and feel younger and slimmer. The results of this procedure are visible right away and will continue to improve. With a balanced diet and regular exercise, results are long-lasting. Scars,spanning the lower abdomen from hip to hip, will fade with time, leaving your stomach sleeker and more defined than ever before. We are very careful to make the incision as low possible; this is typically at a level low enough for even a bikini to conceal the scar.
Candidates for a Tummy Tuck in Seattle/Bellevue
The best candidates for a tummy tuck are in good physical condition with pockets of fat or loose skin that haven’t responded well to traditional diet and exercise. This procedure can also benefit older, slightly obese people whose skin has lost some of its elasticity. Tummy tucks can also be useful for women with stretched skin and muscles from pregnancy. Results from the tummy tuck procedure will likely diminish if women continue to bear children, so we advise patients who plan to become pregnant to consider postponing this procedure until they are done having children.
We also encourage patients who intend to lose a lot of weight to wait before undergoing the procedure, since skin in the abdominal area typically loosens after substantial weight loss.
Tummy tucks take approximately two to four hours and are performed under general anesthesia or IV sedation. This procedure may be performed on an in-patient or outpatient basis, depending on the complexity of your surgery and recommendation of Dr. Wortham.
Your surgeon will make two incisions: one from hip-bone to hip-bone close to the pubic area, and another around the navel. They will separate the skin from the abdominal muscles, which are then pulled together and stitched into place for a firmer abdomen and narrower waist. The skin flap is then stretched down and over the newly tightened muscles, excess skin is removed, and the navel is reattached in a natural position. Finally, your surgeon will close the incisions and apply sterile surgical dressings over the sutured areas. As with all of our cosmetic body contouring procedures that require incisions, we utilize Mepitel silicone sheeting after surgery and recommend solid silicone sheeting after a few weeks to optimize the appearance of the scar.
After surgery, compression garments are worn and a temporary tube may be inserted under the skin to drain excess fluid from the surgical site. Recovery time ranges from two weeks to a few months. You should limit strenuous activities for at least six weeks, and may need to take off from work for 1 to 3 weeks. Your doctor will give you specific instructions for your individual recovery. Following these instructions can help speed up your recovery and reduce the risk of any post-surgery complications.
Avelar Abdominoplasty or Lipoabdominoplasty is a modification of the standard tummy tuck that is the preferred technique used by Dr. Wortham. It preserves much of the underlying blood supply that is normally sacrificed such that risks of complications and need for drains after surgery are reduced. It can also allow more thorough and complete liposuction to be safely done at the same time as the tummy tuck. The alternative to lipoabdominoplasty is to undergo liposuction followed by a standard abdominoplasty 3 to 6 months later.
Mini Tummy Tuck
A mini tummy tuck is similar to the regular tummy tuck procedure, except it involves a shorter incision and the skin is only tucked below the navel, which does not have to be moved. This procedure is ideal for patients who need just a little improvement to the lower abdomen in order to reach their desired results. You can discuss the differences between these procedures, as well as weigh their benefits and risks with our doctors in order to decide which procedure is best for you.
There are certain risks and complications that can occur with any cosmetic procedure. During your consultation, Dr. Wortham will make sure you are a good surgical candidate. They will also discuss the risks and complications pertaining to your procedure and answer questions you may have. Visit us for a top-rated tummy tuck in Seattle, Bellevue and nearby areas.