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Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty)

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Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty)

In tummy tuck surgery, excess fat and skin tissues are removed from the lower and middle parts of the abdomen, and the abdominal wall muscles are tightened. This operation can significantly correct the protruding appearance in the abdomen. Tummy tuck can make you look more beautiful as well as improve your self-confidence. Tummy tuck operations (partial tummy tuck and full tummy tuck) create great results in patients with weakened abdominal muscles or excess skin. And in most cases, if you follow a balanced diet and exercise regularly, the results are long-lasting. If you have realistic expectations and if you are prepared for a permanent surgical scar and a long-term recovery period, tummy tuck surgery can be the answer you are looking for.

What are The Risks of Tummy Tuck Surgery?

Thousands of tummy tuck surgeries are successfully performed every year. Highly successful results are usually achieved when tummy tuck surgeries are performed by a qualified plastic surgeon who is trained in the correction of body contours. However, there are risks associated with undergoing a surgery and specific complications resulting from this procedure.

Postoperative complications such as infections and clots are rare. The infection can be treated with antibiotics and through draining the inflammation. However, it prolongs the duration you stay at the hospital. By starting to move as soon as possible after surgery, you can minimize the risk of clots.

An inadequate healing process that causes very noticeable scars may require a second surgery. Smokers are recommended to stop smoking, because smoking can increase the risk of complications and prolong healing.

You can reduce the risk of complications by strictly following your surgeon's pre-operative and post-operative instructions, especially about when and how to return to physical activity.

How to Prepare for Tummy Tuck Surgery

Your surgeon will give you specific instructions on how to prepare for surgery. These instructions also include information about diet, smoking, and taking vitamins and drugs.

If you are a smoker, you should stop smoking a few weeks before the surgery. Also, you should not smoke for a certain period of time after the surgery. Some tests and examinations are also required to make sure that you are healthy enough to undergo this surgery. You will not be able to drive after the operation. For this reason, you should have a friend or relative to drive you home. You also need someone to stay with you overnight.

Each patient is given specific preparation instructions. It is aimed to achieve the ideal results from the surgery in this way. In general, you should,

  • Stop smoking 3 weeks before the operation
  • Make sure that all the tests requested are done before the operation
  • Not use aspirin and anti-inflammatory drugs for 1 month before the operation
  • Drink plenty of water in the period before the surgery (having enough water in the body is very important for a successful surgery and recovery process)
  • Take at least one week off from work
  • Arrange someone to drive you home after the surgery, someone to stay with you overnight, and someone to look after your children (if you have any)

Post-operative Period of Tummy Tuck Surgery

For the first few days, you will likely have abdominal swelling, and feel pain and discomfort that can be relieved with medication.

Depending on the extent of the surgery, you may be discharged within a few hours or stay in the hospital for 2-3 days.

Your doctor will give you instructions on how to take a shower and change your clothes. You may have difficulty in standing at first, but you should start walking as earlier as possible.

The stitches on the surface are removed within 5-7 days after surgery. Deep stitches whose ends come out from the skin are removed within 2-3 weeks.

The dressings on your incision site can be replaced with compression clothing.

It may take weeks or months for you to feel the way you used to.

If you have strong abdominal muscles and are physically fit, the recovery process is much faster. Some patients can return to work after 1-2 weeks while some patients need 3-4 weeks of rest and recovery.

Exercise supports the healing process. Even the people who have never exercised before should start an exercise program to reduce swelling, lower the risk of clots, and strengthen muscles. On the other hand, you should avoid intense exercise until you can do it comfortably.

In the first 3-6 months of the healing process, your surgery scars may appear to be getting worse. It is normal. It takes 9-12 months for your surgery scars to flatten and lighten. These scars never disappear completely. However, they are not visible with most clothes, even with swimsuits.

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