Tummy Tuck Procedures

I want you to be as informed as possible before you choose to have surgery at the Bashioum Cosmetic Surgery Center, Ltd. Patients frequently ask the same questions about each surgery. I have compiled this list of questions from my 25 years of cosmetic surgery experience. I hope these help you understand how cosmetic surgery is beneficial and how it can make you feel better about yourself.

What is tummy tuck surgery?

Tummy tuck surgery (AKA abdominoplasty, dermatolipectomy, body sculpting, belt lift, or abdominal tightening) reduces abdominal protrusion. Liposuction, surgical skin removal, and/or muscle tightening are all used based on the preoperative abdominal appearance. People with protruding abdomens due to extra skin and fat and weakened muscles, usually after pregnancy and/or weight loss, turn to tummy tuck surgery to give a more natural appearance which matches their body proportions and improves their appearance in clothing.
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What is a belt lift surgery?

Thigh lift surgery is usually combined with a tummy tuck. This combination leaves a scar which goes around the waist like a belt. I suggest the tummy tuck be done first followed by the thigh lift six weeks later. I believe this reduces the risks of serious complications and allows time during the surgery to give the best results.
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How much will it cost?

Please call my office for an accurate price quote or, better still, come in for a personal consultation. My suggested quotes include professional fees, anesthesia fees, operating room costs, equipment fees, and before and after care. They do not include hospitalization costs, prescriptions, home nursing care, preoperative history and physical examination, laboratory costs, or pathology fees. If you compare prices, make sure that you consider all these costs and fees. Also, tummy tuck surgery requires some time off work for a safe recovery.
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What can I do to make my abdomen look better after having children?

Pregnancy stretches both the skin and the muscles of the abdomen. This, along with weight gain and surgical scars, leaves many women with an unacceptable appearance of their abdomen. Both liposuction and tummy tuck surgery can help. The tummy tuck achieves a flatter abdomen by tightening the skin and the muscles. Liposuction is used to remove excess fat. This combination is the best choice to repair the effects of pregnancy on your abdomen.
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Will I ever be exactly the same on both sides?

It is normal for the abdomen not to be the same on both sides. In fact, many people’s belly button is not in the center of their abdomen. Surgery can reduce these differences but not eliminate them. It will be necessary for you to adjust to some abdominal asymmetry after your surgery.
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Will there be scars after surgery?

Scars are part of all surgery. It is important to understand where tummy tuck scars will be placed. The scar is a W-shape. It extends from just above the pubic hair as a downward curve toward the groin crease, and then upward toward the hipbones. The length of the scar is determined by how much extra skin is removed. In addition, there is frequently a scar around the belly button. These can be covered with clothing. I try to position the scar in the area which will be covered by the smallest two piece bathing suit bottom of your choice. However, fashion always offers bathing suits that may reveal some of the scar.
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Will my bathing suit hide the scar?

My goal is to place the scars in a position that can be covered by the bathing suit of your choice. However, fashion always offers bathing suits that may reveal some of the scar.
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Will I be able to have a breast reconstruction using the tummy tissue?

Tummy tuck surgery reduces and changes the blood supply of the skin of the abdomen. It also removes any extra skin and fat as well. For these reasons, it is not possible to do this kind of breast reconstruction (TRAM) after a tummy tuck.
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Can I have children after a tummy tuck?

Once the extra skin has been removed and the muscles have been tightened, pregnancy may lead to excessive stretch marks and disruption of the muscle repair. You will loose the improvement achieved with the tummy tuck. For this reason, I recommend you take measures to reduce or eliminate the risks of future pregnancies before you have a tummy tuck.
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Will this help my back pain?

It may help, but unfortunately, you cannot rely on tightening of the abdominal muscles to relieve back pain. This is impossible to predict because there are so many different causes of back pain.
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How long must I wait after having a baby?

I recommend that you wait a full six months after having your last child before considering a tummy tuck. This will allow you to lose any excess weight and strengthen your abdominal muscles following pregnancy. It will also eliminate the stress of caring for a newborn child.
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Can I have abdominal surgery at the same time as a tummy tuck?

I do not recommend any internal abdominal surgery at the same time as cosmetic abdominal surgery. I believe that the combined risks are unacceptable. Small incisional or umbilical hernias can be repaired with a tummy tuck.
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What are the risks of tummy tuck surgery?

There are risks with any surgery. Infection, excessive bleeding, abnormal scarring, poor healing, slow healing, skin loss, changes in skin sensation, and muscle or nerve injury, although uncommon, can occur. Fortunately, many problems that result from such complications are correctable with additional surgery. Although very rare, there have been reported deaths as a result of blood clots in the legs, severe infections, and pneumonia-like conditions. You must understand your risk of complications completely before you choose to have cosmetic surgery.
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I have heard about so many bad things on television, is it safe to have tummy tuck surgery?

There are always risks to having cosmetic surgery. Serious problems are usually related to excessive surgery and/or undiagnosed medical conditions. I believe tummy tucks can be done safely with a high degree of patient satisfaction.
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What can you tell me about this new technique that I saw on television?

Everyone in the United States wants the latest in medical care. Unfortunately, this is not always the best medical care. At times, media presentations will leave out critical information about potential complications, quality of results, and FDA regulations. I am open-minded when it comes to new technology but I would rather not expose my patients to the newest techniques until they have been proven to be effective and safe. There are recent studies which change the way the surgery is done such that the need for a drain is reduced.
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Should I stop smoking?

For general health reasons, I recommend that all my patients stop smoking. It is clear that smoking increases your risk for developing all sorts of cancers. Breathing problems like emphysema and circulatory problems, including heart attacks, are also linked to smoking. Smoking can increase the risk of coughing after your surgery, which may lead to unwanted bleeding. Finally, the chemicals released from burning tobacco also reduce blood flow, which can result in skin loss during the healing period. Both of these problems can ruin the results of your tummy tuck and lead to revision surgery. It is always best to stop smoking.
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What other choices do I have?

There are other choices when it comes to tummy tuck surgery. These include liposuction, weight loss, acceptance of a deformity, and changes in clothing styles. Alternate tummy tuck techniques include small incisions, endoscopic tummy tuck, lowering the position of the belly button, vertical scars and transverse scars. Always understand all your options before having a tummy tuck.
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What additional procedures can I consider that will enhance the result?

Surgeries can be combined to yield dramatic and complimentary results. For safety reasons, I recommend the length of surgery be limited to six hours. Except for liposuction, I suggest no more than one area of the body be treated at the same time. Liposuction of the abdominal area only is sometimes combined with tummy tucks.
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Am I a good candidate for a tummy tuck?

This is a question that can only be answered after a consultation. Tummy tuck surgery is suggested to patients with extra skin and fat of the abdomen and stretched abdominal muscles. I feel strongly that tummy tuck surgery is not a treatment for obesity. Obesity increases the risk of complications and detracts from the aesthetic result. There are many things to consider, including psychiatric conditions, life stress, medical illness, obesity, and motivation. You should be a healthy nonsmoker within twenty pounds of your ideal weight, not going through major life stress (i.e. grieving a death, changing jobs, divorcing), and motivated by internal desires to look better.
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How many times can I have a tummy tuck done?

When tummy tuck is done, extra skin and fat are removed, stretching and tightening the remaining tissue. I strongly discourage any changes (weight gain and pregnancy) that would stretch this skin again. This is not a treatment for continued weight gain or obesity.
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What kind of anesthesia will be used?

Most tummy tuck surgery in my office is completed under general anesthesia. Patients are completely asleep during the surgery and remember little or nothing of the experience.
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How is a tummy tuck done?

Tummy tuck surgery can be separated into four parts. First, a plan is outlined on your abdomen. Second, the incision is placed within the bathing suit line so that the subsequent scar will be inconspicuous and easily covered. Next, the skin and fat are freed from the underlying muscle, the muscle is tightened, and the extra skin and fat is removed. Finally, stitches are used to close the incision in the skin.
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How long will I be in the operating room?

The length of time it takes to complete a tummy tuck is determined by the severity of your problem. Generally, a tummy tuck takes two to four hours to complete. You will spend about six to seven hours in my office.
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  • Member, American Society of Plastic Surgeons
  • Member of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery
BASHIOUM COSMETIC SURGERY CENTER 445 Lake Street, Suite 210 Wayzata, MN 55391 877-647-6882