Abdominoplasty, or tummy tuck surgery, is a common procedure that may be performed in conjunction with liposuction, or as a stand-alone treatment to top off one’s weight loss journey. If you’ve wondered about what a tummy tuck could do for you, chances are you’ve read a bit of misleading information somewhere along the line. Here, we will discuss three details of this procedure that you should know.
A common school of thought regarding abdominoplasty is that this procedure tightens muscles that have become loose due to pregnancy, age, or weight gain. In reality, the muscles of our body know how to extend and to flex, which means they most often recoil after being stretched. The looseness that is noticed across the midsection is most often related to the connective tissue that makes up the abdominal wall. The tightening that is conducted during a tummy tuck can repair the rectus diastasis, which is integrated within the connective tissue across the abdomen.
The navel, or belly button, is an important structure that is preserved throughout the abdominoplasty procedure. It may be repositioned, but it is not removed and recreated. You could think of your belly button as a tube. What you see is one end of the tube; the other end is inside the abdomen, attached to connective tissue. With careful technique, the navel is released and then reinstated, or brought back through the uppermost layer of tissue, after the skin has been tightened. Surgeons attempt to preserve the same essential appearance of the belly button during abdominoplasty. However, it is possible for slight differences to be noticed, depending on suture technique and other factors.
Some patients worry that fat removed during abdominoplasty may redistribute elsewhere. There are two answers to this theory. One is that tummy tuck surgery removes so little fat tissue that no dramatic changes occur. Fat reduction is a job for liposuction. Second, the fat that is removed from the body is gone forever. The results from either liposuction or abdominoplasty, or a combination of the two, are maintainable with healthy lifestyle habits.