Due to pregnancy or a major weight change, the skin of the abdomen can become flabby and wrinkled to a disturbing degree. Correction is possible by the surgical removal of excess skin and adipose tissue, during which tightening the abdominal wall muscles can also be performed.
When is a tummy tuck warranted?
Weakened connective tissue during pregnancy and sagging skin after weight loss do not always regenerate and are greatly influenced by structural properties as well as age. A drooping abdomen can not only cause frustration in an aesthetic sense, but can also make sporting activities uncomfortable, make it difficult to dress fashionably and cause self-esteem problems. A tummy tuck provides an opportunity to remove loose skin and excess adipose tissue, eliminating skin sagging and making the abdomen tight and flat again. You can take out your old favorite clothes once again and no longer be ashamed on the beach.
What happens at the first consultation?
Our plastic surgeon will examine you during a personal consultation and, based on their references, show you what your expected best outcome will be if you decide to have surgery. He explains the necessary corrections and the different surgical techniques, as well as showing you where the surgical scars will be located.
Preparing for surgery
As with all surgeries, before a tummy tuck you will need to have a full examination, which includes laboratory tests and, if necessary, other tests (e.g., ECG and x-ray). In our private hospital, we perform all the necessary tests at the same time to save you time and make your preparations for surgery more convenient. You will then be given some lifestyle tips to help you prepare for surgery and to speed up your recovery. These include quitting smoking - at least temporarily - as nicotine slows the healing processes, consuming adequate amounts of fluids, vitamins and trace elements (vitamin C, selenium, zinc) and avoiding the use of aspirin, ginkgo biloba and other natural remedies, because these affect blood clotting.
What happens during surgery?
During a tummy tuck our plastic surgeon makes a longitudinal incision along the so-called bikini line from one hip to the other, passing under the navel. He then removes excess skin and adipose tissue, unites elongated, separated abdominal muscles and fixes the navel in its original anatomical position. Finally, drain tubes are inserted to drain any discharge, and these remain in the abdominal wall for as long as the plastic surgeon deems necessary – for a week or even longer. Only absorbable sutures are used throughout, sparing you the inconvenience of later suture removal. The whole procedure takes 2-3 hours.
After a tummy tuck you will need to spend one night in our private hospital, where you can relax in pleasant and comfortable surroundings, but we recommend that you sleep for three weeks with your upper torso supported from underneath and adopt a slightly bent forwards posture when standing. The surgical site should not be exposed to water for one week. You will need to wear the special compression dressing - which we provide for you - for eight weeks. During the first two weeks it is important to avoid all strenuous physical activity, then you can gradually resume your previous rhythm of life, and after three weeks light exercise is allowed. Neither the solarium, sunbathing, nor the sauna are advised for two months. Our plastic surgeon will call you back for a postoperative examination at specified intervals. The visible scars heal after approximately 6 months, the subcutaneous ones within 2 years. Although we try to screen for all risk factors during preoperative examinations for tummy tuck surgery, unforeseen complications may occur. At the first consultation your plastic surgeon will inform you about these and how to avoid them.