Abdominoplasty

(Tummy Tuck)

There are several types of abdominoplasty operation; the commonest are the mini-abdominoplasty, the full abdominoplasty, and the Fleur-de-Lys abdominoplasty. A modification is the apronectomy operation.

Mini Abdominoplasty
This operation removes a small amount of excess skin from the lower abdomen and tighten this area alone. It can be carried out with liposuction to enhance the results. The scar is a little longer than the scar from a Caesarian section (childbirth) operation.

The operation takes about an hour and can usually be performed as a day case procedure. Patients are discharged with an abdominal corset, which they must wear constantly (24/7) for a week – in which time they cannot shower or bath. They are usually then reviewed, after which they can shower and wash normally, but must still wear the corset for a further month.

This operation does not address any tissue above the belly button – this is what the abdominoplasty operation does.

Apronectomy
This operation is a larger version of the mini-abdominoplasty. Patients with excess skin hanging from their waist, who do not wish, or cannot have, a full abdominoplasty, can consider this operation. Here, the skin below the abdomen is removed but there is no attempt to pull the abdomen particularly flat – the excess tissue is removed and sutured. The scar is usually as long as the abdominoplasty scar.

The operation involves staying overnight at the hospital and the use of drains until the patient is discharged. Once again, the corset must be worn for a month as above.

Abdominoplasty
An Abdominoplasty is the operation to remove excess skin from the abdomen, addressing the whole abdomen. It is commonly carried out in those who have had children or lost weight, and is best undertaken when your weight is stable.

The operation involves moving all of the skin in the abdomen, pulling it down, and then removing the excess. The muscles of the abdomen are normally tightened during the operation, and then all of the skin below the belly button is removed, and the skin above covers the new tummy.

Because the skin of the upper abdomen stays, any tattoo, scars, etc in this area will be moved but not removed – Mr. Price will advise you of this during your consultation.

The operation takes approximately 2 hours and requires an overnight stay. You will wake up with an abdominal corset and drains; the latter will be removed before you are discharged. Patients are discharged wearing the corset, which they must wear constantly (24/7) for a week – in which time they cannot shower or bath. They are usually then reviewed, after which they can shower and wash normally, but must still wear the corset for a further month.

Fleur-de-Lys Abdominoplasty
This is the one of the biggest abdominoplasty operation and is usually carried out in those who have lost significant weight, or who already have a vertical scar in the middle of their abdomen. The operation involves removing skin from both the central upper and lower abdomen in a pattern loosely based upon the ‘Fleur-de-Lys’ feather pattern. The advantage of this pattern is that the abdomen can be tightened sideways as well as vertically – but the price for this is a vertical scar up the abdomen. Results are often dramatic, especially in those who have lost significant amounts of weight.

This is one of the bigger operations in cosmetic surgery, taking 2-3 hours, and a 1-2 night stay is common. After the operation you will wake up in an abdominal corset, with drains. The drains are removed before discharge but the binder must be worn, without removing it, for a week – in which time you cannot shower or bath. After your 1-week review, you will be able to shower (but not bath), but must otherwise still wear the corset constantly for a further month.

Extended Abdominoplasty/Belt Lipectomy
These terms cover a small group of operations that are tailored to the patient and which are never the same for each patient – as such, they are called ‘Extended Abdominoplasties’ or ‘Belt Lipectomies’ – although in effect each patient has a unique operation. These are operations for patients with significant weight loss, often following Gastric Banding or Bypass procedures.

This is the biggest single operation in cosmetic surgery and can take upwards of 5-6 hours. The operation removes excess skin from the front and back of the abdomen, leaving scars around the waist and, occasionally vertically up the abdomen. Although the operation is big, so too are the results.

After the operation you will wake up in an abdominal corset, with drains. The drains are removed before discharge but the binder must be worn, without removing it, for a week – in which time you cannot shower or bath. After your 1-week review, you will be able to shower (but not bath), but must otherwise still wear the corset constantly for a further month. It is common to have fluid collections after the operation and so you are likely to have a series of appointments following your surgery to drain this fluid.

To make an appointment to discuss Abdominoplasty (Tummy Tuck) surgery in Cambridge, please contact Mr Price’s secretary.