Tummy tuck or abdominoplasty is one of the most demanded surgeries in Spain along with breast augmentation, liposuction and rhinoplasty. However, the general public does not know what it consists of: can the navel be lost, are there large scars, is it useful in cases of obesity?
Dr. Orestes Fernandez, of the Instituto de Benito, a pioneer in its practice, clarifies all the doubts and false beliefs that exist around this procedure.
Is it the best intervention for overweight patients?
It is a myth, because first, before practicing it, you must lose weight, since abdominoplasty is aimed at removing excess skin from the abdominal wall. That is to say, this surgery is indicated for those people in good shape, but with flaccid skin, weakened muscles or an excess of abdominal fat that cannot be corrected with diet or exercise. Although sometimes a few pounds can be lost, it is not a weight loss procedure.
Do I want to have a tummy tuck as soon as possible after childbirth?
This is a myth. It is true that this intervention is one of the most demanded surgeries by women who have been mothers to regain their figure, since the skin does not return to its original position after childbirth. But it cannot be immediate, since it is necessary to wait between 8 and 10 months after giving birth to evaluate this solution. This is the time necessary for the normalization of the internal structures and hormonal changes, as well as the recovery of the ideal weight.
Will the scar always be there?
This is true and also a myth. Whenever there is talk of surgery, scars remain. Therefore, on the one hand it is true that the abdominal scar will never disappear, but it does not have to be a problem. Its appearance will depend on internal factors, such as genetics or the extent of the corrected flaccidity, and external factors such as the suture material, the good coping of the edges, the care, etc. In addition, in order to improve it, we use silicone sheets and gels or appliances if necessary.
Then, after six months the area starts to flatten and the scar will not be visible, as it can be hidden with underwear or bikini and will get better and better. This also applies to patients with keloid stigmata.
This is a myth. Dr. Orestes Fernandez makes it clear: “It is essential to keep the navel, but it will be surrounded by a new skin and with better aesthetics. The shape will also change, but in no case can this element of our abdomen be eliminated.
Can I get back to normal in less than a month?
It is true that abdominoplasty, like other cosmetic surgeries, requires a postoperative period, which greatly influences the previous physical condition. Although, in general terms, usually does not reach four weeks.
The suction drains are removed the next day. Subsequently, for at least 3 weeks, you have to lead a moderate lifestyle, avoiding physical exercise, saunas and sun exposure. After the second week, depending on the evolution, it is also possible to return to work, also depending on the activity performed and the evolution of each patient.
The protective girdle should be maintained for one month, although it can be replaced by other garments if the evolution is good. In addition, it is important to practice lymphatic drainage once or twice a week for two months after the operation.
Is it ideal to get rid of all the stretch marks on the abdomen?
This is true and also a myth. Tummy tuck surgery is not a procedure designed to directly address stretch marks. However, an improvement in this regard can be noted after performing it. Since all the skin in the area is stretched, the stretch marks below the navel can be eliminated, while those above the navel are quite disguised.
Can the fat that will be removed from my abdomen be placed in my buttocks?
This is a myth. Lipotransfer from one area of the body to another can only be performed with the fat extracted by the liposuction method. What is frequently done is to associate abdominoplasty with liposuction to achieve greater overall harmony.
Protocol: what does it consist of?
Abdominoplasty or tummy tuck is a procedure that removes excess skin and fat from the abdomen. Candidates are those who accumulate fat or have excess skin in the abdomen. Also those who are already moderately obese due to age.
During the intervention, the abdominal muscles are tightened and fat and excess skin is removed, achieving a firmer and flatter belly, with a narrower waist. It is performed under anesthesia and requires one day of hospitalization. The results last for years, as long as the patient follows healthy habits in activity and nutrition.