The Abdominoplasty, or the “tummy tuck”, is a procedure that removes loose skin and excessive fat from the abdomen and tightens the abdominal muscles for improved tone and function. At Macquarie Cosmetic Medicine, the procedure also allows for repair of the abdominal muscles that may have stretched during pregnancy, causing lower abdominal bulging.
During the procedure, an incision is made from hip to hip above the pubic area. Our surgeons take great care when designing the placement of the tummy tuck scar. We place this below the line of your swimwear to ensure that it is not seen when wearing a bikini. This scar will initially be red and will slowly fade to a flesh colour. With younger patients, this can take up to two years, whilst older patients should experience a change in colour in less than one year.
The length of the scar will be determined by the amount of redundant skin in the flanks. If your roll of skin and fat extends around the back over your hips, the skin excised will be greater and as a result the scar will be longer.
Liposuction may be used to remove fat and refine the contours, and excess skin is removed. The navel may need to be repositioned and then the area is stitched closed. Depending on the extent of the surgery, a complete abdominoplasty can take 1 to 5 hours. A partial abdominoplasty (or mini tummy-tuck) can be completed between 1 to 2 hours from the comforts of our clinic in Sydney, Australia.
The best candidates for Abdominoplasty procedures are typically men or women who are generally in good health but are bothered by a large fat deposit or loose abdominal skin that won’t respond to diet or exercise. The surgery is particularly helpful to women who, through multiple pregnancies, have stretched their abdominal muscles and skin beyond the point where it can return to normal.
The recovery period following a tummy tuck is typically around 2 to 4 weeks, though this is dependent on a number of variables, such as age, health and how well you follow our post-operative care instructions. It is suggested that you take a portion of this time off work and regular duties in order to heal properly.
Initially, there may be bruising, swelling and discomfort for the first couple of weeks. During this time, we strongly suggest that you avoid any heavy activity.
We will provide you with a compression garment to wear throughout your healing period. This garment will help to minimise swelling and bruising, and can support the repaired tissues.
Patients are advised to avoid all forms of nicotine for a month prior to surgery and also during the recovery period. Nicotine reduces the blood flow to the wound prolonging healing, increasing the risk of infection and producing a poorer scar. Smoking also increases the risk of infection and impairs wound healing.
Your tummy tuck scar will be determined by what type of scar your body will produce, but it can be affected by how you follow our post-operative care instructions. A full recovery takes 3 to 6 months, during which time your scar will fade even further.
Still have questions about the abdominoplasty procedure that you need answering before you book a consultation at our clinic in Sydney, Australia? Read through our FAQs below or get in touch with us to speak to a tummy tuck specialist for further clarification.
The tummy tuck, also known as the abdominoplasty, involves the safe and precise removal of excess skin and in many cases unwanted fat from an incision in the lower abdominal area. This incision typically extends from one hip to the other and is made above the pubic bone. While removing excess skin and fat, the specialist might also tighten up the abdominal muscles for a flatter, smoother appearance. There are numerous types of abdominoplasty procedures available; it’s best to speak to a medical professional at our Sydney practice to determine which best suits your needs.
It’s understandable to assume that the difference between the mini tummy tuck and the full procedure is merely the size of the incision. However, the correct medical description of the mini tummy tuck is the removal of some skin in the lower abdominal region without cutting around the belly button or tightening the abdominal muscles above the navel. As for the incision, the one made for the mini tummy tuck is just a small cut above the pubic bone, while the full tummy tuck procedure requires a larger incision along the bikini line.
The tummy tuck procedure is best suited to people who are generally in good health but just happen to have an excess of loose skin as a result of pregnancy or drastic weight loss. For those with only slight sagging of skin and minimal protrusion, the mini tummy tuck might be the better option.
The mini tummy tuck procedure often carries more stringent conditions for suitability than the full procedure. To be eligible for the mini tummy tuck in Sydney, Australia, the patient must be:
Whether you go for a full procedure or a mini tummy tuck, you will be under anaesthetic. Patients undergoing the mini tummy tuck will be put under local or general anaesthetic. For a full tummy tuck, the patient is put under a general anaesthetic. When you wake up, you’ll discover your stomach area is swollen and will experience discomfort as your body begins to repair itself.
The mini tummy tuck takes typically less than two hours to complete. The full tummy tuck procedure can take up to five hours. Liposuction might be used in either procedure.
Recovery times vary significantly whether the patient has undergone a full tummy tuck (recovery time is generally between four and six weeks) or a partial tummy tuck (with an expected recovery period of 1 to 3 weeks). Variables such as age, lifestyle factors and your ability to follow post-operation instructions will determine the speed at which you will recover without complications.
To avoid any delays with the progress of your recovery, we suggest avoiding any heavy activity during the first few weeks after the procedure – particularly while you might still be experiencing bruising, swelling and general discomfort while your body repairs itself.
Smokers or those actively trying to quit should avoid all forms of nicotine for the month prior to the procedure and the recovery period that follows. Nicotine stems the flow of blood to the wound, which interrupts the body’s ability to heal and can in fact increase the risk of infection which leads to the generation of a poorer scar. Smoking can also maximise the risk of infection and minimise the ability of the wound to heal correctly and quickly.
It is highly likely that you will experience scarring of some form once you’ve undergone either the full or mini tummy tuck. The mini procedure will likely leave you with a thin scar, while the full tummy tuck procedure is likely to leave you with scarring from hip bone to hip bone above the bikini line.
Discover more about our abdominoplasty procedures, or arrange an appointment at Macquarie Cosmetic Medicine in Sydney, Australia by contacting us today.