Plastic Surgery

(Mini) Abdominoplasty / (Mini) Tummy tuck

What is the (Mini) Abdominoplasty / (Mini) Tummy tuck?

Abdominoplasty or tummy tuck is a cosmetic surgery procedure used to make the abdomen more firm. The surgery involves the removal of excess skin and fat from the middle and lower abdomen in order to tighten the muscle and fascia of the abdominal wall. This type of surgery is usually sought by patients with loose tissues after pregnancy or individuals with sagging after major weight loss.

In the mini tuck technique the skin is separated only between the incision line and the navel. This skin flap is pulled down and any excess is removed and the flap of skin is stitched back into place leaving a flatter and more toned abdomen.

As opposed to a full tummy tuck, a mini uses employs a shorter pubic incision and no moving of the bellybutton. The procedure is as popular as the full abdominoplasty but is more suited people who have excessive fat especially between the belly button and the pubic bone. This area is also called the lower abdomen. The main benefit of the mini abdominoplasty is the improvement of the abdomen contour.

What is the procedure?

Abdominoplasty operations vary in scope and are frequently subdivided into categories. Depending on the extent of the surgery, a complete abdominoplasty can take 1 to 5 hours. A partial abdominoplasty (mini tummy tuck) can be completed between 1 to 2 hours.

A tummy tuck is usually done under general anesthesia.

During standard tummy tuck surgery, your surgeon will make a long cut in your abdomen above your pubic area, also a second cut can be made in order to remove your belly button from the surrounding skin. The surgeon will pull stretched or torn muscles together and stitch them in place, will remove excess fat, pull down the skin and your belly button will be settled in the correct position. Your excess skin is then removed.

Cuts are closed with stitches and your lower abdomen is firmly strapped with bandages. It’s likely you will have a scar around your belly button and a long curved scar on your abdomen above your pubic area.

Mini abdominoplasties are often performed on patients whose fat deposits are located below the navel and require shorter incisions. During this procedure, your belly button most likely will not be moved. Your skin will be separated between the line of incision and your belly button. This type of surgery may also be performed with an endoscope (small camera on the end of a tube).

During extended tummy tuck surgery, excess skin and fat from your abdomen and lower back is removed. You will have a scar around your belly button and a long curved scar on your abdomen above your pubic area, and around your lower back.

Following your surgery, dressings or bandages may be applied to your incisions, and you may be wrapped in an elastic bandage or a compression garment to minimize swelling and to support your abdomen as it heals.

A small, thin tube may be temporarily placed under the skin to drain any excess blood or fluid that may collect to minimize swelling after tummy tuck surgery.

What kind of result can you expect?

Your abdominoplasty procedure will result in a flatter, firmer abdominal contour that is more proportionate with your body type and weight.

The final results may be initially obscured by swelling and your inability to stand fully upright until internal healing is complete.

Although the results of an abdominoplasty procedure are technically permanent, the positive outcome can be greatly diminished by significant fluctuations in your weight. For this reason, individuals who are planning substantial weight loss or women who may be considering future pregnancies may be advised to postpone abdominoplasty surgery.

Tummy tuck operations cannot correct stretch marks, although these may be removed or somewhat improved if they are located on the areas of excess skin that will be excised, generally the treated areas below the belly button.

After mini tummy tuck, the lower abdominal wall that becomes more firm, flat and elastic, the bulge of the tummy following pregnancy (where diet or exercising won't help) are reduced and appearance of stretch marks, especially those located below the navel can be improved.

Recovery period and recommendations

It usually takes about six weeks to make a full recovery from a tummy tuck, but this varies between individuals and the technique used, so it's important to follow your surgeon's advice. Usually you can return to work about three to four weeks after your surgery.

You may need pain killers for some time after the surgery. You may be advised to wear a support garment for up to six weeks after your surgery. It’s likely you will have some tightness around your healing wounds.

Stitches will be removed after one or two weeks, or you may have dissolvable stitches. The length of time your dissolvable stitches will take to disappear depends on what type you have.

Possible side effects and complications

Possible abdominoplasty/mini abdominoplasty risks include unfavorable scarring, bleeding (hematoma), infection, fluid accumulation, poor wound healing, skin loss, blood clots, numbness or other changes in skin sensation , anesthesia rinks, skin discoloration and/or prolonged swelling, fatty tissue found deep in the skin might die (fat necrosis), major wound separation, asymmetry, recurrent looseness of skin, pain, which may persist, deep vein thrombosis, cardiac and pulmonary complications, persistent swelling in the legs, nerve damage, possibility of revision surgery, suboptimal aesthetic result.

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