A Tummy Tuck Can Transform Your Figure and Renew Your Confidence
A tummy tuck can remove loose or excess skin resulting from weight fluctuations, pregnancy, or age. This popular cosmetic surgery procedure can also tighten weakened abdominal muscles. Also known as an abdominoplasty, this procedure is designed to help patients achieve a flatter, more toned midsection and beautifully contoured waistline that is not achievable through diet and exercise. Creating a more defined midsection not only improves the way clothes fit, but can take years off your appearance and boost your self-confidence. Dr. Liza María Pompa González and plastic surgeon Dr. Marco Rodas at LIMARP® in Tijuana, Mexico, receive ongoing training and education, ensuring that each patient can undergo the safest, most effective treatments possible.
Are You a Candidate?
Candidates for a tummy tuck procedure include patients who are in good overall health but still suffering from excess skin and fat around their midsection, even after following a regimented diet and exercise routine. Before undergoing this procedure, patients should be at a healthy, stable weight in order to achieve the best results. Additionally, candidates for a tummy tuck should:
- Have realistic expectations about the procedure
- Should not have plans to become pregnant
- Be committed to the healing and recovery afterwards
- Not smoke
- Not have compromising medical conditions, diseases, infections, or illnesses
This procedure can help to improve:
- Smooth loose, saggy skin around the abdomen
- Remove excess abdominal fat
- Improve the way clothes fit
Creating a more defined midsection not only improves your clothing options, but can take years off your appearance and boost your self-confidence.
In addition to improved aesthetics, a tummy tuck can also offer medical benefits. For example, this procedure can:
- Aid in recovery of Stress Urinary Incontinence (SUI): Many women suffer from SUI after a vaginal birth. There may be leakage from the bladder after a woman laughs, coughs, or sneezes. During the tummy tuck procedure, a minor bladder obstruction is made with a slight incision, using soft tissue located near the pelvic area. This helps to lessen incontinence.
- Help achieve better posture and abdominal tone: A tummy tuck can help improve abdominal tone and posture. It can also tighten weak abdominal muscles, while excess skin and fat are removed. This creates a more flattened abdomen. A weak abdomen is often associated with back pain and other issues. After a tummy tuck, patients may notice better posture as well as a tightened and flattened stomach.
- Offer relief from ventral hernias: A ventral hernia is a condition in which the abdominal tissue or the intestine begins to push through the abdominal wall. A tummy tuck may be able to aid in relief from this condition by providing the patient with a stronger abdomen.
Types of Tummy Tuck Procedures
At LIMARP®, we offer three different types of tummy tuck techniques to meet patient’s unique needs, including:
- Traditional Tummy Tuck: Also known as a full tummy tuck, this procedure addresses most concerns that are found above and below the naval to create a more contoured torso. With this technique, incisions are made along the abdomen from hip to hip, giving Dr. Rodas full access to the underlying tissues and abdominal muscles. He will then remove any excess fat with liposuction, tighten weakened abdominal muscles, and re-drape and remove excess skin to create a smoother, more defined appearance.
- Mini Tummy Tuck: For patients who have mild to moderate troublesome areas below the naval, a mini tummy tuck is recommended. During the procedure, a small incision is made below the naval so Dr. Rodas can remove a small volume of excess fat, while also tightening and removing loose, saggy skin. Although this procedure does not offer as dramatic results as a full tummy tuck, patients can expect to recover faster with reduced risk for complications.
- Extended Tummy Tuck: When patients undergo a significant amount of weight loss as a result of bariatric surgery or diet and exercise, it is not uncommon to experience high volumes of excess skin across the abdomen and hips. If left unaddressed, this tissue can prevent patients from properly fitting into clothes, as well as cause skin rashes and sores. In such cases, Dr. Rodas may recommend an extended tummy tuck. During this procedure, an incision is made along the abdomen that will extend beyond the hipbone. This length of incisions allows the surgeon to not only remove excess skin and fat in the abdomen, but access tissue along the sides of the torso and lower back known to cause “love handles.”
What Can I Expect before My Tummy Tuck Procedure?
Once you have decided to undergo a tummy tuck procedure, there are several preparations that need to take place beforehand. Your medical team may order additional evaluations and lab tests. They will also review all current medications with you to ensure there are no contraindications to treatment. Additionally, we recommend that patients:
- Eat a well-balanced diet. Healthy food choices can boost the body’s immune system and aid in successful healing.
- Begin an exercise routine a few weeks prior to surgery. A leaner, healthier body can help prevent weight gain after a tummy tuck. Additionally, enhanced metabolism and an increase in muscle mass can help patients enjoy a quicker recovery.
- Stop smoking. Because tobacco products inhibit healing, it is best to avoid smoking for at least two weeks before your tummy tuck. In fact, if you have considered kicking the habit for good, now is the time.
You will also need to arrange for assistance during your recovery, as you will need to limit your activity significantly for the first several days. Be sure that a trusted friend or family member can drive you home after your surgery and assist you with dressing, bathing, and other activities. Every tummy tuck is different and requires various methods of preparation. Your doctor will let you know what to expect during your recovery so you can plan ahead.
The Tummy Tuck Process
During your initial consultation, Dr. Rodas will perform a thorough examination to ensure you are a good candidate for a tummy tuck, carefully explaining the procedure in detail. On the day of the procedure at our facility, you will be taken back to one of our comfortable surgical rooms where the anesthesiologist will administer general anesthesia. Once you are comfortably sedated, Dr. Rodas will make the necessary incisions in discreet locations to minimize scarring and ensure they are easily hidden beneath swimsuits and underwear.
A full tummy tuck generally requires an incision that is made horizontally, in the area between the belly button and the pubic hairline. The shape and size of the incisions will depend upon the amount of excess skin present. A second incision is generally made around the navel area.
Once the incisions are created, Dr. Rodas will remove any excess fat tissue, using liposuction if necessary. He will then tighten the underlying abdominal muscles and reposition the skin and naval to create a more contoured waistline and more defined abdomen. Once the abdomen has been sculpted to achieve the desired results, Dr. Rodas will close the incisions with sutures and apply the necessary bandages and compression garments. The overall length of the procedure will depend on the type of tummy tuck performed, but in most cases will last anywhere from two to five hours.
Contact Our Practice Today
If you have recently experienced dramatic weight loss and are unhappy with the appearance of your abdomen, contact our surgical facility online to learn more about the benefits of a tummy tuck. You can also reach us by phone at (664) 686-2542 (Mexico) or (619) 870-1904 (USA).