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Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty) Fayetteville

The abdominoplasty (tummy tuck) is a procedure that tightens and flattens the abdominal area and in some patients it will also help tighten the muscle complex. This surgery falls into the category of body contouring. In some patients the abdominoplasty also removes adipose and skin in the flank and hip area.

Patients that are the best candidates for abdominoplasty are in good physical condition and have areas of loose skin on the abdomen that will not go away with diet and exercise. Common causes of redundant (extra) tissue (fat and skin) include weight gain, pregnancy, and the natural aging process. Abdominoplasty is not a good procedure for weight loss. Patients that plan to lose a large amount of weight should wait to get an abdominoplasty. Many improvements have been made in the abdominoplasty over the last thirty years which has improved the results in most patients.

The abdominoplasty procedure varies from patient to patient depending upon the specific situation of each patient. In some patients, there is redundant tissue only in the lower abdomen below the belly button. In these patients, a “mini” abdominoplasty may be an option. Some patients have redundant tissue above and below the belly button, and those patients are treated with a full abdominoplasty. A full abdominoplasty treats the adipose and skin above and below the umbilicus (belly button). The incisions for both procedures are placed in the “bikini line” so that the scars are concealed by under clothing or a bathing suit.

The design and position of the abdominoplasty incision is determined based on the patients preference. A more linear (straight) incision is chosen by some patients, but most chose a curvilinear (curved) abdominoplasty incision shaped like a smile. The curvilinear (curved) abdominoplasty incision is designed so that bathing suits cut high on the sides will usually conceal the scars. The full abdominoplasty procedure also has a circular incision around the umbilicus (belly button). This incision places the umbilicus (belly button) to be in the same position after surgery, and also allows the Plastic surgeon to remove any sagging as well.

Anesthesia used for abodominoplasty can be “general” or a combination type of anesthesia. The anesthesia preferred by Dr. Herring for abdominoplasty is very similar to the anesthesia that is used for liposuction, which is a combination type anesthesia. Combination anesthesia uses sedation and local anesthesia together which has a number of advantages for the patient.

The recovery period after abdominoplasty is usually brief and does not interfere with daily living activities. The discomfort after abdominoplasty is usually well controlled by oral pain medicine. The day after surgery patients are usually able to begin most normal activities. After any surgery, there should be a gradual return to maximum activity, especially for patients that engage in regular aerobic activity such as jogging.

Follow up appointments after abdominoplasty patients allow Dr. Herring to observe the scar healing, and in some patients non-surgical treatment of the scar after the surgery can improve the final result. The continued improvements in appearance after abdominoplasty will be seen for months, but an immediate improvement is seen the day following surgery. Dr. Herring provides follow up appointments for his own patients as a courtesy without any fee.