Abdominoplasty - Tummy Tuck

For individuals of above average weight or who have undergone significant weight loss, it is possible to see sagging or drooping skin, particularly in the area below the belly button, where the skin is loose and in excess, in some cases creating a kind of fold at the base of the stomach.
This operation is also concerned with making other alterations, dealing with stretch marks, scars or muscular problems with can complicate the operation and make the clinical picture extremely variable.
Naturally the choice to have the operation depends on the objectives that the patient wants to achieve. In almost all patients who undergo this treatment have suffered a marked relaxation of the abdominal muscles, which must be adjusted and reformed into their correct position.

Tummy Tuck. When and why?

  • After significant weight loss.
  • If liposuction was not sufficient and it is necessary to remove excess skin.
  • In the event of a relaxation of the muscles due to pregnancy, surgical operations or aging.

To get the stomach area looking toned, and reshape the hips. 

Surgical Technique

The aim of a tummy tuck is to flatten the abdominal wall, remove excess skin and fat, to reinforce the abdominal muscles and to reconstruct the belly button according to its original form.
The surgical technique requires an incision across the lower abdomen above the pubis. The residual scar is therefore horizontal and extends laterally according to the quantity of skin to be eliminated. It is easily covered by a normal bikini or swimming costume. In some cases it is necessary to use cosmetic surgery to treat the scar in order to make it less visible.
The belly button is disconnected and left on the muscular plain; the surgeon then performs a full liposuction on the whole stomach in order to slim the area; from the incision above the pubis the skin is cut to above the belly button. The muscular area is then reinforced with a suture from the base of the sternum to the pubis, as any excess fat is removed and the final incision is then made.
Finally, the belly button is placed at the centre of the stomach and stitches are placed in order to secure the operation.
Any stretch marks, physical defects of the belly button due to pregnancy, hernias or scars will be corrected with the appropriate technique during the operation itelf.
In the area of the incision drainage is effected in order to collect any blood and fluids that collect, which is then removed before the first phase of medication.
At the end of the operation a compress modelling bandage is applied which, when removed, is then replaced by a containment support to be worn for a period of 20-30 days.

Post operation

The operation takes place under general anaesthetic.
It normally takes one or two days to recover.
The stitches are removed 10-12 days after the operation.
In the first few days the patient will experience some light pain and soreness in the area of the stitches, meaning that the patient should move carefully and walk slightly bent forward. The patient may also experience a reduction in the sensitivity of the skin in the lower part of the abdomen which will generally disappear in the space of 2-6 months.
It is not recommended to sleep on your front for at least two weeks.
Normal daily activities can generally be restarted in the space of two weeks, though it is not recommended to play sport for at least a couple of months.
Sunbathing is allowed from two months after the operation, and the scars of the operation should be covered in with total sun-block for a period of six to nine months.

Tummy tuck - Summary

  • Anaesthetic: General
  • Duration of operation: 120 min
  • Time spent in clinic: 24 hours
  • Number of types of medication: 6
  • Recovery period: 14 days 


Examples before and after