Tummy tucks are one of the top 5 most common cosmetic enhancement procedures performed in the US, but even with their popularity, many of our patients at Longwood Plastic Surgery have a lot of questions about the recovery process. As always, we’re here to answer any and all questions you may have.
What is a Tummy Tuck?
The tummy tuck, or abdominoplasty, is a popular procedure that addresses the position of abdominal muscles, fatty tissues, and skin elasticity of the torso. Abdominoplasties are surprisingly customizable, with focus zeroing in on only the lower abdomen all the way to expanding beyond the abdomen to the flanks, lower back, and lower chest. The extent of your tummy tuck plays a major role in the amount of recovery time you can expect.
During your procedure, your LPS surgeon will remove excess skin and fat from the target region and tightens the muscles of the abdominal wall if necessary. This reduces abdominal protrusion dramatically, giving you a flatter, sleeker profile, better fitting clothes, and an overall improved appearance.
Am I a Good Candidate?
The best abdominoplasty candidates are men and women in overall good health who are bothered by large pockets of fat, loose skin (from pregnancy or significant weight loss), or stretched abdominal muscles. All candidates should be near their desired weight, and women should be finished with childbearing to be considered.
What is Recovery Like?
The extent of your abdominoplasty determines the recovery process. The procedure itself may take between 1-5 hours. Following your LPS physician’s instructions closely will help minimize discomfort and complication risk as well as shorten convalescence.
Immediately after your tummy tuck, you’ll have surgical bandages and perhaps drains which will help prevent fluid buildup and swelling. These will be removed a few days post-op. You’ll be most comfortable resting in an elevated position on a few pillows, and will need to be up and moving at least moderately to prevent blood clots. Pain management will help you through most of the discomfort as you’ll likely have trouble bending, standing for long periods, or lifting anything more than a few pounds. As such, you may require help with small children and household activities such as cooking. You will have an abdominal support garment to aid with swelling and discomfort, so it is wise to wear it for the recommended time. Driving, cooking, and shopping are often manageable after 1-2 weeks, and patients usually return to work within 3-4 weeks.
Recovery is a process, not a point on a calendar, so you’ll notice incremental improvements that add up to more and more mobility and activity as time progresses. You may experience some numbness and a pulling sensation for weeks or months, but this most often fades with time, as will your scar.
What Results Can I Expect?
Because fatty tissue is removed and your muscles may have been repositioned, you’ll notice some immediate improvement despite the swelling and bandages. Your abdomen will be slimmer right away, and as you heal and your swelling subsides, your new contour will become more obvious. Clothes will fit better and you may even find yourself adopting improved posture as confidence grows.
At Longwood Plastic Surgery, nothing pleases us more than to watch our patients transform into the people they long to be. Call us today for information on this or any procedure.
“This practice is easy to find, has parking and the people are friendly, from the receptionists to the doctors. The waiting time is not too long and it seems that you get results. I have used this practice, as represented by Dr. Donald Morris, for quite a few times and I would recommend it to others. What I had done there were reconstructive surgery after breast cancer and double mastectomy and also a tummy tuck.“
Take the Next Step
Interested in learning about abdominoplasty? Schedule your consultation with Longwood Plastic Surgery today by calling our Brookline office at (617) 383-6250. We serve the Brookline and Greater Boston area with distinction.