What is a Tummy Tuck?
Tummy tuck surgery, also known as an abdominoplasty, is a surgical procedure that removes excess skin and fat in the abdominal area. The remaining skin and connective tissue (fascia) are then tightened with sutures for a firmer, more toned, and natural-looking appearance. This procedure is very popular for people who have gone through a large amount of weight loss, have excess skin, or have been pregnant.
Dr. Egozi offers tummy tucks in Clearwater, as they are one of the most sought-after procedures in the area, especially when it comes time to find a swimsuit for your next beach day!
Who is a Good Candidate for a Tummy Tuck?
You are a suitable candidate for a tummy tuck if:
- You are in overall good physical and mental health
- You have realistic expectations and full knowledge of what tummy tuck surgery can and can’t achieve (this will be discussed at your consultation)
- You’ve gone through pregnancy and childbirth or undergone drastic weight loss and are left with loose, hanging skin in the abdominal area
- You would like to remove excess skin from your waistline without impacting your navel area or abdominal muscles
- You are within 15 pounds of your ideal weight
- You are a non-smoker
How Do You Prepare for a Tummy Tuck?
To prepare for your tummy tuck, along with Dr. Egozi’s instructions during your consultation, you should:
- Get a medical evaluation to ensure you are fit for the procedure.
- Adjust medications (prescribed or over-the-counter) accordingly.
- Stop smoking (and drinking a few days before the surgery).
- Stop taking aspirin, anti-inflammatory drugs, and herbal supplements that can increase bleeding.
- Arrange for someone to drive you home from the clinic and stay with you for the first night after your surgery.
Benefits of Having Tummy Tuck surgery
1) Increase Confidence
Oftentimes, patients are surprised at what a noticeable increase in confidence levels they experience with a flatter stomach and better muscle tone. It is common to feel a boost in self-esteem as you realize you can once again wear swimsuits or more fitted clothing without feeling self-conscious.
2) Remove Stretch Marks
Although many people like to insist that nothing gets rid of stretch marks, the fact is, when skin is tightened, stretch marks can become significantly less visible. After a thorough consultation with Dr. Egozi, he will explain what you personally can expect with regard to stretch mark removal.
3) No Pregnancy Belly
As with any instance of dramatic weight gain followed by weight loss, being pregnant asks a lot of your abdominal skin, requiring it to stretch to the max. Once you have given birth, it’s normal to see a lot of loose hanging skin where you once had tight abs. Although it can feel discouraging, tummy tuck surgery may be a viable solution.
4) Toned Stomach
Tummy tuck surgery is geared toward removing fat, tightening skin, and joining the abdominal muscles together again to restore the appearance of a toned stomach. The procedure can be particularly well-suited to women who have been through pregnancy and find they can’t get rid of the stubborn bulge between the two separated bands of the abdomen.
Tummy Tuck Risks & Safety
Whether to undergo tummy tuck surgery is a very personal choice. It’s up to you to decide if the potential benefits are worth the potential risks. Complications are rare, but knowledge is power.
The risks of tummy tuck surgery include:
- Anesthesia intolerance
- Accumulation of fluids
- Loss of skin
- Slow or poor wound healing
- Skin discoloration
- Changes in skin sensation or numbness
- Prolonged swelling
- Visible scarring
- A recurrence of skin looseness
- Deep vein thrombosis (a blood clot that forms in a vein)
- Cardiac and pulmonary risks
- Less than optimal results
- Pain which persists
These and other risks will be thoroughly explained and discussed during your consultation.
How Much Will a Tummy Tuck Cost, on Average?
During your consultation, your needs will be assessed and your final tummy tuck cost will be determined, as every patient’s needs are different. While one patient may require a mini tummy tuck, another may require a full tummy tuck combined with liposuction or other procedures.
How is a Tummy Tuck Procedure Performed in Clearwater?
Prior to making an incision, Dr. Egozi will administer your anesthesia to ensure your comfort throughout the entire procedure. The size and location of the incision can vary depending on the type of tummy tuck being performed.
Typically, the main incision travels from hip bone to hip bone, while another is made around your navel. It is through this second incision that your weakened abdominal muscles are repaired. Some patients also opt for simultaneous liposuction. Finally, excess skin is trimmed and incisions are closed.
This procedure takes around 2-3 hours to complete, depending on the complexity of the treatment. You will have to wear a compression garment for the following weeks, along with compression stockings. Pain medications and antibiotics will be prescribed accordingly. You should be able to return to exercising after 6 weeks.
What are The Different Types of Tummy Tuck?
During your consultation, your goals and needs will be thoroughly discussed in order to determine the best tummy tuck option for you. Tummy tuck types at Egozi Plastic Surgery include the following:
1) Mini Tummy Tuck
A mini or modified tummy tuck is best-suited to those in good shape who nonetheless struggle to lose stubborn excess fat and skin via diet and exercise. It can be performed under local anesthesia or oral sedation and only addresses the area beneath the belly button. The incision is significantly smaller than that used in a full abdominoplasty, typically rendering scarring invisible.
2) Full Tummy Tuck
Best-suited to patients with excess skin from pregnancy or obesity, a full or standard tummy tuck removes any excess skin or fat below and above the belly button, while at the same time tightening up loose abdominal muscles. The surgery leaves a scar that can easily be hidden with swimwear or underwear.
3) Extended Tummy Tuck
Best-suited to individuals who have excess skin that stubbornly clings to the hips or creates ‘love handles,’ the extended tummy tuck requires a lengthier incision–from the flanks to the lower back. Results include a slimmer profile and improved contours all around!
4) Tummy Tuck Alternatives
For those who wish to explore nonsurgical alternatives to tummy tuck surgery, Egozi Plastic Surgery offers multiple fat destruction, body sculpting, skin tightening, and muscle toning technologies which can be discussed during the consultation.
Why Choose Dr. Egozi for Your Tummy Tuck Surgery?
Dr. Egozi has been running a successful and well-respected practice for 15+ years. With his comprehensive expertise in a wide spectrum of aesthetic procedures–from noninvasive to surgical, you’re always in great hands. Egozi Plastic Surgery surgical facilities are state-of-the-art and we are considered one of the premier Surgical Centers in the Clearwater area. Our clinic also welcomes patients from throughout Pinellas County and the Tampa Bay area. We proudly offer service to residents of Clearwater, St. Petersburg, Largo, Dunedin, Pinellas Park, Palm Harbor, and the surrounding areas. To learn more about your tummy tuck options, schedule a consultation with Dr. Egozi today!
Recovery Process After Abdominoplasty Surgery
While it’s normal to want to return your usual routines ASAP, it’s integral that you give your body enough time to properly heal. It’s common to experience bruising and swelling after a tummy tuck. Your drains will be left in for a few days after surgery to keep fluid from building, and you’ll be shown how to care for and empty them at home. It’s best to arrange to have time off from other areas of your life for several weeks or as long as a month or two!
A few tips for optimal healing:
1) Don’t Overexert Yourself
Expect to spend at least a few days lounging at home after your tummy tuck. You’ll be able to take short walks, working your way up to more intensive exercises over several weeks. Staying active will help reduce swelling and minimize your risk of blood clots. Avoid heavy lifting!
2) Don’t Smoke
Smoking increases your risks of post-op complications and can also compromise your healing process, as it breaks down elastin, the protein which keeps your skin firm and supple.
3) Don’t Ignore Follow-Ups
The tummy tuck recovery process can vary widely from person to person, so it is important to meet with Dr. Egozi as instructed. Based on your progress, he may recommend more recovery time.
4) Don’t Take Aspirin or Ibuprofen
While it’s very important that you take all prescribed medication as instructed, do not take any OTC meds or painkillers without consulting Dr. Egozi first. Aspirin, Ibuprofen, and other anti-inflammatory meds should be avoided because they increase the risk of bleeding.
How Long Will the Recovery Period Be?
Typically patients require a minimum of two months before they can resume all normal activities, with exercise (beyond walking) becoming possible again after 4 weeks. After 2 weeks, you will be able to stop taking pain medication and drive again. For 6 weeks post-op, you’ll have to wear an abdominal binder (tummy tuck belt) to avoid fluid buildup and provide support for your abdominal area. You’ll also need to avoid strenuous activity for at least six weeks.
Schedule Your Clearwater Tummy Tuck
To learn more about your tummy tuck options, schedule a consultation with Dr. Egozi today! Our clinic is conveniently located for residents of Pinellas County and the Tampa Bay area, including St. Petersburg, Largo, Dunedin, Pinellas Park, and Palm Harbor.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Much Weight Can You Lose After a Tummy Tuck?
Typically, you can expect to drop 2-3 sizes after tummy tuck surgery. However, it’s important to know that the tummy tuck is not a weight loss procedure, but rather is done for excess skin removal and muscle tightening. As long as your weight remains stable, your results will be permanent.
Is a Tummy Tuck Painful?
You may experience swelling and moderate pain during your post-op recovery, but by taking regular short walks, eating healthy, staying hydrated, and following your aftercare instructions, pain can be managed well.
Are There Any Side Effects of a Tummy Tuck?
The side-effects of tummy tuck surgery are rare, but include bleeding, infection, and prolonged swelling. Risks can be minimized by following all instructions and taking the time needed to heal fully!
Can Tummy Tucks Be Covered by Insurance?
Insurance and Medicare only cover tummy tuck surgery if it is deemed medically necessary, but for the most part, cosmetic plastic surgery is not covered. You need a valid medical referral and you must meet strict criteria.
Can I Get a Tummy Tuck After Being Pregnant?
If you have recently been pregnant, you should wait at least six months after giving birth, or six months after you stop breastfeeding, before going through a tummy tuck procedure. The ideal time to schedule a tummy tuck is when you are at an ideal weight with a healthy lifestyle and want to improve your body contour.