Are the results of a tummy tuck permanent?
A relevant question patients usually ask when they are thinking about a tummy tuck is, “Are the results permanent”? The answer is yes, however, there exists some important considerations. First, if somebody gains a large amount of weight after a tummy tuck, then, of course, the results will change and will deteriorate. Secondly, if they lose a lot of weight, then the results may be compromised as well. For example, they can develop loose skin. Thirdly, if a patient falls pregnant after a tummy tuck, then, the abdominal muscles, as well as the skin, will stretch, and again, the results will be compromised. However, a redo tummy tuck can be performed once the pregnancy period is completed, and the patient has returned to a stable weight. Finally, as with any cosmetic procedure, the aging process continues, thus, with time, the skin quality, as well as the muscle tone, will change.
What is the difference between a full tummy tuck and a mini tummy tuck?
The difference between a full tummy tuck and mini tummy tuck can be summarized as three.
- Most of the time the scar from the full tummy tuck is much longer than the mini tummy tuck.
- The main goal of a mini tummy tuck is the amount of excess tissue between the belly button and the pubis. It doesn’t solve any bulges or any fatty tissue that is outside this area.
- Usually muscle tightening is not performed in a mini tummy tuck. Whereas in the full tummy tuck, the muscle is tightened and brought together, some liposuction may be added in for body contouring, and the scar tends to be longer.
Overall, the results are more dramatic from a full tummy tuck than they are from the mini tummy tuck.
What is the recovery like after a tummy tuck?
The recovery and the pain after a tummy tuck are usually also a big concern of patients. The operation takes about two hours, it’s performed under general anesthetic and usually involves a one-night stay. Patients go home with dissolvable stitches and dressing and are asked to wear a garment for about six weeks. I also like my patients to have manual lymphatic drainage, which is a particular type of massage for a few weeks after the procedure. The first few days are a little uncomfortable, but strong painkillers are usually prescribed for this. Also, it is recommended to use four or five pillows at night and difficulty to stand upright may arise. But usually, after a week, most patients are relatively mobile and within two weeks are generally back at work and beginning some gentle exercises. The full recovery takes about six weeks, and the swelling as a result of the surgery can take several months to settle down.