Trust. Experience. Results.
Tummy tuck surgery, also known as abdominoplasty, is a great solution for individuals who are looking to lose excess abdominal skin and tissue. After significant weight loss or pregnancy, the stretched muscles of the abdomen can become weakened and the previously tight skin can lose its tone and become loose, saggy or hanging. A tummy tuck procedure is often the best option for restoring weakened abdominal muscles back to their anatomic location and removing the extra skin and fat to give a more firm and toned abdomen.
If you are considering a tummy tuck, you will naturally want to know what to expect. Of course, it’s important to keep in mind that no two tummy tuck recovery experiences will be the same.
This is why our DC Metro area, plastic surgeons encourage all patients to gather accurate information for themselves, so they can feel comfortable with the decision they make about their bodies and their goals.
This article discusses what a typical patient goes through during the tummy tuck journey.
The first thing to realize with tummy tuck surgery is that there are different types of tummy tucks. Which type of procedure is right for you depends on several factors including your anatomy and your goals. The two most common types of a tummy tuck include:
It is important to realize that a tummy tuck is a surgical procedure requiring several weeks of recovery in most cases. Depending on your goals, your surgeon will discuss the factors of the operation that can contribute to less recovery.
For example, some patients choose to not have muscle tightening done as this does come with the requirement of no heavy lifting for six weeks after surgery.
Similarly, some patients are more interested in just being smaller in clothing and are not concerned with the look of extra skin. These patients may discover that abdomen liposuction meets their goals.
Your surgeon will thoroughly discuss your options and answer any questions you may have during your consultation and throughout the process.
From the patient’s perspective, the typical tummy tuck procedure has five steps:
Immediately after a tummy tuck operation, your surgeon will apply dressings to your incisions and you will be fit for a compression garment to minimize swelling and provide support to your abdomen as you heal. Some form of compression is recommended for up to six weeks after tummy tuck.
Your particular journey from surgery through complete recovery will vary based on your anatomy, what procedure your surgeon performs, and how many procedures you have done.
Swelling, bruising, and numbness are all normal and resolution is on an individual level. Stitches are removed about a week after surgery. Most patients take off work for 1-2 weeks and are getting back into most activities at that point.
Heavy lifting is not recommended for six weeks after any muscle tightening procedure.
Because there is a scar after abdominoplasty, you will want it to heal as thin and flat as possible. The scar care protocol at Austin-Weston consists of surgically taping the incision for 4-6 weeks followed by silicone scar cream for another 4-6 weeks. The ideal scar continues to fade for several years after surgery and can be difficult to ultimately notice.
It is important to keep your follow up appointments after surgery so any adjustments in scar care can be made as soon as possible. Occasionally scars need surgically revised, but usually, scars soften and thin when given adequate time.
Tummy tuck patients are typically among our happiest. While there is a significant recovery, most patients agree it is worth the recovery to achieve the results. From a restorative standpoint after childbirth, there is not a more dramatic procedure.
RealSelf ranks procedures using what they call Worth It Ratings to answer the question: what percentage of people felt having this procedure was worth it?
Worth It Ratings are a quick and easy way to understand the overall community opinion for a range of cosmetic surgery procedures. The rating is displayed as a percentage and shown next to a ‘thumbs up’ symbol. Worth It Ratings are a ratio of positive vs. negative reviews of a procedure (‘not sure’ ratings are not factored in). So, an 80% rating for a procedure means that 4 out of 5 people thought it was worth it.
Tummy Tuck RealSelf Worth It Rating = 96%
A tummy tuck might be the answer to giving you the flat, beautiful abdomen you have been dreaming of.
If you live in the Northern Virginia or Washington DC area and are ready to reclaim your confidence, contact us to schedule a complimentary consultation at (703) 893-6168 or submit a form online to request an appointment.
You may also be interested in:
Our four plastic surgeons have over 100 years of combined experience & work together in our dedicated, luxurious center providing combined knowledge on all procedures. Schedule your consultation today to learn how our surgeons can guide you on your journey to aesthetic harmony.