Dr. Palmer performs tummy tuck (abdominoplasty) on patients that have an excess of abdominal wall skin and/or skin damage from stretch marks. Most patients also have excess fat and therefore Dr. Palmer offers liposuction to selected areas at the same time as the tummy tuck. Liposuction of the upper and lower abdomen and the anterior flanks is included in the tummy tuck procedure for those who need it at no additional cost.
If there is weakness of the muscles of the abdomen (diastasis rectus), a plication of the muscles (bringing them back together in the midline) will be performed to restore normal anatomy and improve overall postoperative shape.
Depending on the degree of skin laxity, the navel will be recreated (similar to traditional abdominoplasty) or simply slightly adjusted downward (similar to mini-abdominoplasty). The skin excision scar is kept low and should be hidden with a bikini. Dr. Palmer will discuss with you the position of the navel and the location of the scar before the procedure so you will know what to expect. It is often helpful to bring the underwear in which you would like the scar to be concealed.
Dr. Palmer performs this procedure in the in-office surgical suite with the assistance of tumescent anesthesia and IV sedation. Performing procedures in the office allows avoidance of the exorbitant facility fees found in hospitals. It also avoids potential infectious organisms and is typically more convenient for patients. Some patients, however, are treated more safely in a hospital setting because of related chronic illnesses. This will be determined at the time of consultation.
Recovery from a tummy tuck varies from patient to patient, however we recommend that you take off a minimum of two weeks to let your body heal. No heavy lifting or vigorous exercise should be performed for six weeks if a plication was performed. We follow patients up the day following the procedure, at one week to remove the drain, and then typically at one month, and finally at three months. Patients are usually ready for their post operative photos at three months. All follow up is included in the procedure fee.