Women and men who have loose abdominal skin and fat that are concentrated in the abdomen can benefit from abdominoplasty. Sometimes these conditions are inherited. In other instances, substantial weight loss may cause abdominal skin to become loose. Abdominoplasty also can tighten muscles that have been separated and weakened by pregnancy. The procedure may somewhat improve the appearance of stretch marks, especially those located below the navel.
You may be a good candidate for abdominoplasty if you have one or more of the following conditions:
- Excess or sagging abdominal skin
- An abdomen that protrudes and is out of proportion to the rest of your body
- Abdominal muscles that have been separated and weakened
- Excess fatty tissue that is concentrated in your abdomen
If you plan to become pregnant or lose weight, you should discuss this with Dr Morello to determine the proper timing for surgery. Scarring from previous abdominal surgery may limit the results of your abdominoplasty.
Generally, a horizontal incision is placed just above the pubic area. The length of the incision depends on the amount of skin to be removed. The incision will vary somewhat according to the structure of your abdomen and the style of bathing suit or undergarments that you prefer. Skin of the lower abdomen that contains stretch marks may be removed as well. Any remaining stretch marks may be somewhat flattened and improved, but you should not expect a dramatic change in their appearance. The procedure may include tightening of the underlying abdominal muscles to restore their functionality.
There are many variations both to the design of the incisions and the technique itself. When the amount of loose skin is minimal and the excess fat deposits are located below the navel, a short horizontal incision is all that is necessary. This procedure is called a partial, or "mini," abdominoplasty.
Basically there are three components to abdominoplasty: skin excision, liposuction, and muscle repair. The extent of each of these parts will be individualized for you. Many of these procedures are done in our office surgery facility and you can go home. Recovery depends on the extent of the procedure, and can be 10 to 20 days.