It is done under a general anaesthetic and you usually spend two nights in hospital. Drains are used and usually removed after about five days. Recovery is usually a few weeks and you can then return to work and normal activities.
You will have a compression garment on when you wake up and this will stay on for the next few weeks to help with contouring. A scar will be made below your bikini line across your lower abdomen. Dr Flood recommends his scar fade regimen which includes massage and cream for 3-6 months. This will give you the best possible scar.
The goals of abdominoplasty are to improve the contour and external appearance of the abdominal wall while leaving insignificant scars and a natural looking umbilicus.
The following elements are seen to variable degrees in all patients seeking abdominoplasty:
– Redundant, flaccid skin
– Excessive fatty tissue
– Muscular weakness
– Scar deformities including striae
– Fatty deformities of the abdominal wall may be concentrated around the umbilicus, below the umbilicus, or at the waistline.
How Does It Work?
In category 1 where there is mild skin laxity, minimal excess of subcutaneous fat and mild lower abdominal wall muscle laxity then a mini abdominoplasty is appropriate.
In category 2 where there is moderate skin laxity, moderate subcutaneous fat excess and moderate lower abdominal wall laxity then a standard abdominoplasty procedure is appropriate.
In category 3 cases, where there is severe skin laxity, significant subcutaneous fat excess and significant lower and upper abdominal wall laxity then an extended abdominoplasty procedure is required in association with liposuction.
– Pre-operative markings whilst the patient is standing upright. The incision line lies on the upper border of the pubic hair line. The incision line is extended to stay within the pelvic region enabling the scar to be covered by the patient’s underpants.
– The lower abdominal skin/fat flap is elevated up to the rib cage.
– Lower abdominal skin/fat flap is elevated up to the rib cage.
– Sutures are placed in the fascia overlying the erectus muscles to tighten the abdominal wall.
– The redundant skin/fat having been pulled downwards is removed.
– The umbilicus is relocated into its normal position in the midline of the abdominal wall.
– Liposuction may be added to improve the final contour of the waistline and flanks.
– Drains are inserted to remove any fluid or blood that may accumulate beneath the skin flap.
– An abdominal girdle is worn. It is placed on the patient in the operating room.
Most patients require a period of two up to three weeks leave from work. Patients are required to avoid lifting objects heavier than 10kg during the first three weeks. Patients can usually return to exercise and gym activities six weeks post-operatively.
Scar lines are designed to stay hidden within the underpants line of the patient. Scars are usually taped with a skin coloured Micropore tape for a period of three weeks to aid with scar maturation. Most scars take between six and 12 months to fade.