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Home | Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty)

Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty)
Gulf Shores

At McCollough Plastic Surgery, we understand the desire for a firmer, more contoured abdomen. A tummy tuck, or abdominoplasty, is a transformative plastic surgery aimed at improving the appearance of your waistline and lower abdomen. Discover how a tummy tuck in Gulf Shores can help you achieve the results you desire and regain your confidence.

What Is Tummy Tuck?

Abdominoplasty, or the “tummy tuck” operation, is a plastic surgical procedure designed to improve the waistline and lower abdomen. During this procedure, excess skin and fat are removed, and the abdominal muscles are tightened. It is important to note that a tummy tuck is not a weight-loss method but is most successful in individuals with localized abdominal skin and fat issues. This surgery enhances body contour, although it leaves a visible scar. Patients should carefully consider their suitability and expectations before undergoing this surgery.

The Ideal Candidates for Abdominoplasty

Abdominoplasty is not a shortcut to weight loss and generally is most successful in men and women without generalized obesity but with a localized area of excessive abdominal skin and fat and who exercise good nutritional and fitness habits. This figure fault is usually compounded by lax abdominal muscles and sometimes even a defect in the abdominal wall. The term “abdominoplasty” refers to the surgical excision of excessive skin and fat and the tightening of the abdominal musculature. For those patients with only a mild excess of skin and localized fat without muscle laxity, a suction lipectomy (liposuction) may be indicated.

Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty)

Before & Afters

*Each patient is unique, and individual results may vary.
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Abdominoplasty: What to Expect

Abdominoplasty is usually performed as an outpatient surgical procedure under general anesthesia, but an overnight stay may be recommended. During your consultation for abdominoplasty in Gulf Shores, you and your surgeon will determine the amount of excess skin and fat to be removed. The incision is made low on the abdomen, usually hidden in the “panty line,” but usually leaves a visible scar. Although the overall body contour and figure are greatly improved, poor quality skin with stretch marks will remain, but without the excessive bulges. Convalescence usually takes four to six weeks, during which the abdomen may feel tight, requiring loose clothing and guarded activity.

Tummy Tuck Potential Risks & Complications

Complications related to abdominoplasty are rare but do include infection, poor scarring, asymmetries, prolonged abdominal wall discomfort and tightness of surrounding areas, collections of serum under the skin, and blood clots under the skin. Rarely, healing problems related to poor blood supply to the skin or fat occur, with a possibility of skin loss. Again, these problems are more common with obesity or smoking. Occasionally, certain fat deposits on the sides of the abdomen become more noticeable after abdominoplasty and must be removed at a second operation, usually an office procedure.

The Recovery Process After Tummy Tuck

Immediate Post-Surgery Period

Immediately after the tummy tuck procedure, patients will spend some time in the recovery room under the supervision of medical staff. Drains may be placed to remove excess fluids, and you may have a compression garment around your abdomen to minimize swelling and provide support. It’s normal to experience some discomfort, swelling, and bruising during this phase. Pain medication prescribed by your surgeon can help manage any discomfort.

Surgery room for abdominoplasty in Gulf Shores, AL

Early Recovery (Weeks 1-2)

During the first week or two, it’s vital to take it easy and follow your surgeon’s instructions carefully. You may need assistance with daily activities, so it’s beneficial to have a support system in place. You will likely wear a compression garment for a few weeks to reduce swelling and provide support to the healing tissues. Light walking is encouraged to aid circulation, but strenuous activities should be avoided. Proper wound care, such as cleaning and changing dressings, is essential to prevent infection and ensure the incision heals properly.

Continued Recovery (Weeks 3-6)

As you progress into the third to sixth-week post-surgery, you may start feeling more comfortable and mobile. Your surgeon may gradually allow you to resume light activities and work. However, strenuous exercises and heavy lifting should still be avoided. It’s essential to continue wearing the compression garment as recommended and attend follow-up appointments to monitor your progress. Over time, swelling and bruising will subside, and the incision scars will begin to fade, but complete healing can take several months.

Woman after abdominoplasty in Gulf Shores, AL

Summary of Postoperative Instructions:

  • Wear the compression garment for 14 days, removing it only for bathing.
  • Shower daily as part of your hygiene routine, taking care to keep the incision area clean.
  • After bathing, use a blow dryer on a low, cool setting to ensure the skin tapes are dry.
  • Expect the removal of all sutures between days 7-14 following surgery.
  • Drains placed during surgery will be removed around the same time as suture removal.
  • After about six weeks, you can gradually return to normal daily activities.
  • Wear at least SPF 15 or stronger sunblock for one year to prevent scar discoloration.
  • Maintain a stable weight through a balanced diet and regular exercise.

How Long Does It Last?

The longevity of the results from a tummy tuck in Gulf Shores can vary from person to person and depends on several factors, including individual genetics, lifestyle choices, and the quality of surgical technique. The effects of a tummy tuck are considered to be relatively permanent in the sense that the excess skin and fat removed during the surgery will not return. However, it’s important to note that the aging process will continue, and factors like weight fluctuations, pregnancy, and lifestyle choices can impact the results over time.

To maintain the best results, it’s recommended to maintain a stable weight through a balanced diet and regular exercise. Weight fluctuations, particularly significant weight gain, can stretch the abdominal area and compromise the results achieved through abdominoplasty. Women considering pregnancy after a tummy tuck should be aware that pregnancy can potentially affect the results by stretching the abdominal muscles and skin. For those planning to have more children, it may be advisable to postpone a tummy tuck until after completing their family.

Schedule Your Consultation

McCollough Plastic Surgery is your trusted destination for a comprehensive transformation of your appearance. Our modern-day version of The Fountain of Youth offers a professional yet relaxing atmosphere for enhancing and rejuvenating the face, body, mind, and spirit. Located just minutes from the stunning Gulf Shores/Orange Beach, our on-site villas and round-the-clock care ensure a stress-free, luxurious recovery. Schedule your consultation for abdominoplasty in Gulf Shores today.

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