Abdominoplasty, also known as a ‘tummy tuck’, is a successful surgical procedure that sculpts the waistline and smoothens the stomach. But just like any surgical procedure, there are essential recovery requirements and potential complications to be considered. Therefore, consider following these facts before committing to an abdominoplasty procedure.
1. Abdominoplasty recovery time
Abdominoplasty is a major surgical procedure, so it will require some time to heal, usually two to three weeks. It’s perfectly normal to feel pain, fatigue, swelling or soreness the first few days, but this will steadily improve. It’s vital to allow yourself to rest and heal. During the recovery process, we recommend taking some time off work and getting help with household chores. You will also have to postpone strenuous activities for the next three to six weeks.
2. Be at your stable weight before your abdominoplasty
An abdominoplasty will do an excellent job sculpting your body figure, but it’s not a weight loss replacement. Research shows it’s best to be at your desired weight for six to twelve months before undergoing the procedure, preferably 10 to 15 pounds from your goal weight. Maintaining your desired weight is essential because losing or gaining additional weight might undo the body shape achieved through the procedure.
3. Abdominoplasty scars
Abdominoplasty is just like any surgical procedure out there, and although it’s considered very effective, it will leave a permanent scar on your body. The scar usually runs along the incision line, just above the pubic bone, from hip to hip. The scar will remain visible for the coming years but will fade over time. But that shouldn’t worry you because a well-skilled surgeon will make the incision so that the scar can be well covered under clothing, underwear or a swimsuit.
4. Expect surgical drains for a week or two
Surgical drains are usually put in after surgery to remove blood or fluid build-up, which helps to reduce swelling and ensure quicker healing. In most cases, you’ll expect a surgical drain after an abdominoplasty. Although the drains are temporary, they will require special care. Your surgeon will take you through the need for drains and how you can care for them before surgery.
5. Complete healing can take a year
It may take a while to notice the benefits of abdominoplasty. You will experience swelling and bruising during the first few weeks, which will later resolve in the next four to six weeks, and the results will start to show. Residual healing can take six months or longer.
If you experience numbness or loss of sensation along the incision, don’t worry, it’s only temporary. You will be feeling like your old self after a few months.
For information about who could benefit from an abdominoplasty, we recommend reading our article ‘Am I A Good Candidate For Abdominoplasty?’.
Book a consultation to discuss abdominoplasty
Accumulation of fat and skin around the stomach can sometimes be frustrating as we go through regular physical changes such as childbirth, weight changes, and age. When you are thinking of doing an abdominoplasty, take your time and only trust a board-certified surgeon. Mr Shaheel Chummun is an experienced consultant plastic surgeon based in Bristol and specialises in cosmetic surgery. To find out more about abdominoplasty, book a consultation today.