Abdominoplasty (Tummy Tuck)


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Tummy Tuck in New York

Abdominoplasty is an operation to restore and reshape the entire abdomen.   A mini-abdominoplasty is a smaller version of abdominal shaping.  Women may develop redundant skin and fat from pregnancy, especially more than one, and weight loss.  These are the two most common causes.

After a couple of pregnancies (sometimes only one pregnancy), a woman will have a difficult time getting her waistline back.   The stretched out skin and collection of fat in the lower abdomen seems to linger despite diet and exercise. The abdominal strap muscles (rectus abdominis) separate, causing a condition called rectus diastasis.  Once a woman has rectus diastasis, the support and shape of the abdomen are lost in the midsection.  Occasionally, exercises and strengthening of the external oblique and transverse abdominal muscles can help correct the rectus diastasis.  Ironically, belly crunches and sit ups may exacerbate the midline muscle separation.

Another very common cause of excessive skin and fat hanging down in the lower abdomen is weight loss. Both women and men, who have been overweight and achieve significant weight reduction, are only partially satisfied. The redundant stretched out skin and fat in the lower abdomen will not go away.

Abdominoplasty is an operation to excise the redundant skin and fat in the lower abdomen, tighten the separated midline rectus abdominis muscles (if needed), and liposuction the remaining areas of the abdomen and flanks.  This is a wonderful operation to not only remove the overhanging loose skin and fat but also to reshape and tighten the abdomen and contour your waistline.

The operation takes about 2 to 4 hours, depending on how much liposuction is performed.  The scar will be from one hip to the other, but in a discrete location in the lower abdomen that usually will be covered by an underwear or bikini.  The design of the abdominoplasty is important to create a great shape.  The technical details of the operation are important not only to achieve a great result but avoid complications.  My approach is to perform as much liposuction as possible to create the proper contour, dissect only in the midline to avoid wound complications, tighten the separated rectus abdominis muscles and remove the redundant skin and fat.  I use only strong long lasting dissolving sutures and place many of them under the skin to create a fine line of a scar.

Recovery from an abdominoplasty depends on the extent of the operation.  In general, it will about 2 weeks before getting back gradually to normal type activities.  An abdominal binder is used to give support during the early recovery process.  It may take up to 8 months to see the final results.

For you as a consumer, it is important to choose a plastic surgeon, who is board certified in plastic surgery. Why?  Because only plastic surgeons are trained properly to make the right judgment. You may or may not be an excellent candidate for a full abdominoplasty. Understanding the high risks associated with this operation, such as wound complications or infection, is a must.

Abdominoplasty, mini-abdominoplasty and liposuction are different surgical approaches to help shape your waistline, depending on your body type.  My approach here in my boutique Manhattan, New York practice is to give you an honest opinion and help you decide which operation would be best to improve your body and waistline without taking unnecessary risks.  Dr. Kim is devoted to bringing quality of workmanship to the West Village, Greenwich Village, Soho, East Village, Lower East Side, Gramercy, Union Square, Tribeca, Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens and Staten Island.