Abdominoplasty or tummy tuck

The abdomen contains an inner girdle made of connective tissue and muscles. Also known as your “core”, this girdle holds the internal organs in place. Pregnancy, childbirth, and weight loss can all stretch this girdle and leave you with excess abdominal skin, stretch marks and laxity of the abdominal muscles. A tummy tuck can help to restore your figure by removing excess skin and fat, tightening muscle laxity, and removing stretch marks. Often times the scars can be hidden within the bikini or pantie line.

The abdominoplasty procedure

These procedures are performed under general anesthesia in the hospital or an outpatient surgery center. Dr. Waltzman will remove most of the skin and fat between your belly button and your pubic bone. The muscles will be tightened, and the belly button will be re-positioned to its normal location. The incision stretches from hip to hip just above the pubic bone. It is normal to have drainage tubes under the skin for a few days. These drains will be removed in the Long Beach office by Dr. Waltzman.

Liposuction may also be used to improve the contour of your body in combination with a tummy tuck. Small incisions are made in normal body folds and creases so that they are hidden. A tummy tuck addresses the abdomen, including love handles. It does not address the hips, and thighs. Liposuction of these areas has the potential to nicely complement and enhance the results of a tummy tuck.

After surgery you will receive pain medication and instructions on how to take care of the dressings and drains. It is very important to follow your surgeon’s instructions to promote proper healing.

What is a mommy makeover?

Having a baby is one of life’s greatest gifts. You have your bundle of joy, but it seems your body will never be the same. You struggle to get back in shape but those tough areas just won’t respond. You have lost all your baby weight but still have problem areas that won’t go away with diet and exercise alone. You can restore your post-pregnancy body with a customized mommy makeover and enhance your confidence and appearance.

A mommy makeover typically combines several cosmetic surgery procedures in one operation, including a tummy tuck to remove loose skin and fat, liposuction for body contouring, breast augmentation or a breast lift. Since a mommy makeover is tailored to your needs and goals, you can focus on the areas of your choice.

The abdominoplasty consultation

You and Dr. Waltzman will discuss your goals, medical history, current conditions and medications. After a thorough exam, Dr. Waltzman will offer his recommendations and discuss the procedures along with their inherent benefits and risks. He will provide you with your options and help you make an informed decision that best achieves your goals.

Am I a good candidate for Tummy Tuck?

You may be a good candidate if you are in good health, have realistic expectations and desire to correct physical changes caused by:

  • excess tummy skin
  • stretch marks
  • C-section scars and fat hanging over the scar, and
  • A thick and undefined waist

If you smoke, you must quit smoking at least 6 weeks before surgery because smoking slows the healing process and increases the risk of complications. Obese patients, and patients with significant amounts of intra-abdominal fat, are generally not considered to be good candidates for an abdominoplasty.

Abdominoplasty considerations

Abdominoplasty is major surgery. Potential complications include swelling, bruising, and pain. You may also experience numbness at the incision site, which usually resolves over time. After surgery, your activity will be limited for several weeks as your body heals. The final results of a tummy tuck will not be visible until most of the swelling resolves, usually after at least 2-3 months.

Timing: The general recommendation is to wait at least six months after childbirth to give your body time to adjust to hormonal changes and to allow enough time to recover. For best results it is important that your weight is stable. If you are planning to loose weight, it is recommended to loose the weight before undergoing surgery.

More Children: If you are considering having more children, you would be well advised to postpone a tummy tuck until you are finished having children.

Dr. Waltzman will listen and work with you to optimize your surgical results. Our professional staff is friendly and helpful. Please call our Long Beach office at 562.448.6100 for more information and to schedule a consultation.