Abdominoplasty, or tummy tuck, is a surgical procedure designed to reshape and firm the abdomen by removing excess skin and fat. It can also restore weakened or separated abdominal muscles, resulting in a smoother and more toned appearance.
This procedure is typically sought by individuals who have excess skin and tissue in the abdominal area that cannot be improved through diet and exercise alone.
Reasons for Abdominoplasty Surgery
Preparing for Your Consultation
General risks of surgery
As with any surgical procedure, abdominoplasty carries general risks, which may include:
Specific Risks of Abdominoplasty Surgery
In addition to the general risks, specific risks of abdominoplasty may include:
Anaesthesia and Surgical Technique
Abdominoplasty is typically performed under general anaesthesia, ensuring you are asleep and comfortable throughout the procedure. The surgical technique involves the following steps:
Recovery and Aftercare
Remember, each patient's experience may vary, and it is important to follow your plastic surgeon's instructions for pre and post-operative care to optimise your results and ensure a safe recovery.
While a tummy tuck can help you achieve a flatter stomach, it is important to note it is not a weight loss procedure. The best candidates for abdominoplasty are men or women who are already in good shape and close to their ideal weight but still bothered by muscle separation or loose abdominal skin.
For patient safety and the best aesthetic outcomes, the ideal candidates should have a body mass index of less than 30 where possible.
The best candidates for a tummy tuck are in good physical condition with pockets of fat or loose skin that haven't responded well to traditional diet and exercise. Tummy tucks can also be useful for women with stretched skin and muscles from pregnancy. Results from the tummy tuck procedure will likely diminish if women continue to bear children, so we advise patients who plan to become pregnant to consider postponing this procedure until they are finished having children.
We also encourage patients who intend to lose weight to delay surgery until they reach their goal weight, since skin in the abdominal area typically loosens after substantial weight loss. Ideally your weight should be stable for at least 6 months prior to surgery.
In terms of safety it is also important to consider your body mass index. Ideally your body mass idex should be less than 30 primary for safety and better aesthetic results.
After surgery, two surgical drainage tubes are inserted under the skin to drain excess fluid from the surgical site. Drains are usually removed after 3-7 days. A compression garment is worn consistently for 6 weeks. Recovery time ranges from 4-6 weeks to a several months. You should limit strenuous activities for at least six weeks, and may need to take up to a month of work depending on the nature of your occupation. Dr. Cheng will give you specific instructions for your individual recovery. Following these instructions can help speed up your recovery and reduce the risk of any post-surgery complications.
Tummy tuck surgery may be partially covered by private health insurance, however this will depend on your individual health insurance policy and specific medicare criteria. Please contact our office for more detailed information.
A tummy tuck is not a substitute for weight loss or an appropriate exercise program.
Although the results of a tummy tuck are technically permanent, results can be effected by significant fluctuations in weight or as a result of pregnancy.
If you may be considering future pregnancies Dr Cheng would advise you to postpone tummy tuck surgery until after you have completed your family.
Dr Cheng's fee for a full tummy tuck starts from $9,000 inclusive of:
Dr Cheng's surgical fee
Silicone gel for care of incision lines
Your post operative review appointments in your first post operative year.
Additional fees such as hospital and anaesthetist fees will be confirmed in formal estimate provided at the time of your consultation.
Private health insurance and medicare generally do not cover postpartum tummy tuck procedures, unless you meet particular medicare criteria relating to significant weight loss. Please ask our friendly team for more information about medicare criteria relating tummy tuck or abdominoplasty. Should you wish to check your health insurance policy - the relevant item number is item #30177.
Ideally a minimum of at least 6 months to allow time to get back to your ideal body weight. Allow your body a chance to heal following the strain of pregnancy and child birth and give your skin an opportunity to recover from the sustained stretching associated with pregnancy.
Following surgery and as part of your recovery, it will be necessary for you to wear a medical grade compression garment for 6 weeks. The compression garment will aid your recovery from the side effects of surgery, including bruising, swelling and general discomfort. It will also help to ease some pain as well.
How does it help?
1. By Reducing swelling or oedema:
The garment compresses and flushes potentially harmful body fluids away from the skin.
2. By minimising bruising by providing compression on small blood vessels and capillaries.
3. Reducing the possible risk of infection as potentially harmful fluids are not allowed to accumulate.
4.Aiding general body contouring and skin retraction by firm compression of the skin during the healing process.
5. Improved comfort by compression provided support.
On average this will be for a minimum of three weeks 24 hours a day and then until 6 weeks for as long as possible each day and overnight. It is recommended you purchase another garment so that one can be washed and air dried whilst you wear the other. This is extremely important in order to ensure the best possible surgical outcome.