Tummy Tuck Surgery in Minneapolis
Sometimes, individuals who are at or slightly above their ideal body weight can still have loose abdominal skin sagging downward. They experience damaged abdominal muscles which are impervious to crunches and planks. For these patients, Dr. Fasching offers tummy tuck surgery (abdominoplasty). He employs this abdominal contouring procedure to eliminate sagging skin and repair the underlying musculature. The result is a tighter, toned tummy.
When Is It Time for a Tummy Tuck?
As we age, the body gradually stops producing collagen and elastin, two proteins that are vital for maintaining healthy, supple skin. Without an ample amount of these components, the skin surface begins to sag and fall.
Rapid weight loss following bariatric surgery can compound this aesthetic concern. A substantial weight gain stretches out the skin, so it loses its ability to shrink back to its normal size and shape once the excess weight is lost. The significant fluctuations in weight which accompanies pregnancy can have the same effect, especially following multiple pregnancies. Pregnancy can also damage the abdominal muscles, sometimes causing them to separate. Once this happens, surgical intervention (in the form of tummy tuck surgery) is necessary to remove excess abdominal skin and restore muscle tone to the abdomen, for a flatter, firmer midsection.
What a Tummy Tuck Does Not Correct
Although a tummy tuck is an effective means of achieving a tighter, trimmer abdominal profile, it is not intended to be used as a weight loss treatment. In fact, many patients seek the expertise of Minneapolis tummy tuck surgeon Dr. Fasching after they have lost a substantial amount of weight with the help of bariatric surgery, following pregnancy or as the result of transitioning to a healthier lifestyle.
It is important to mention that regaining a significant amount of weight following tummy tuck surgery can reverse the aesthetic benefits of the procedure. Therefore, Dr. Fasching highly recommends patients reach a stable body weight they feel they can maintain before undergoing abdominoplasty. Also, women are advised to wait until they are finished having children before considering a tummy tuck.
Tummy tuck surgery will not necessarily improve the appearance of stretch marks on the midsection. Stretch marks located on the excess skin below the belly button might be removed along with the skin that Dr. Fasching eliminates during abdominoplasty. Any residual stretch marks on the abdomen might also become less noticeable once Dr. Fasching has pulled the remaining skin taut during surgery.
The Abdominoplasty Procedure
Abdominoplasty is an outpatient procedure, performed under general anesthesia. The duration of surgery generally lasts between one and four hours, depending on the extent of correction necessary.
Dr. Fasching starts with liposuction targeting the abdomen, if necessary, to remove localized deposits of fat from under the skin. He then makes a horizontal incision that extends across the lower abdomen, in the pubic region, from one hipbone to the other. Although the incision is substantial, it is easily concealed beneath underwear or bikini line.
He then eliminates excess skin before repairing the underlying muscle and tissue structures by strategically positioning permanent internal stitches in the muscle fascia, in a crisscross pattern which resembles the laces of a corset. The stitches are used to pull together separated abdominal muscles and hold them in place after surgery.
Once muscle tone has been restored, Dr. Fasching re-drapes the residual skin, pulling it tight in the process. He closes the incision with sutures. Finally, using a second incision concealed within the navel, He moves the belly button, so it is in line with the new, flatter abdominal contour.
The treatment area is dressed in bandages and a compression garment on top. The compression garment minimizes swelling and provides added tissue support during the healing process. Individuals who have undergone tummy tuck surgery must wear the compression garment for several weeks following surgery, as directed by Dr. Fasching.
Mini Tummy Tuck
Some patients are good candidates for a mini-tummy tuck. These patients typically have poor skin elasticity and muscle tone, but their loose excess skin is limited to the region below the belly button.
With a mini tummy tuck, Dr. Fasching eliminates excess skin from the lower section of the abdomen only and tightens the underlying musculature. He can use a shorter incision with this modified technique, so the recovery period is shorter and less intense than with a full abdominoplasty.
Another difference between a full abdominoplasty and a mini tummy tuck is there is no repositioning of the belly button. Liposuction can also be included in the modified procedure for optimal contouring.
What to Expect After the Tummy Tuck Procedure
Exparel liposomal bupivacaine, a pain reliever, is provided during treatment. The use of Exparel has been shown to greatly improve patient comfort for a full three days following surgery, which also decreases the use of narcotics for pain management. Our tummy tuck patients enjoy a more comfortable recovery experience and find their procedure to be far more manageable than they expected.
Patients who have undergone tummy tuck surgery should expect to take about two weeks off from work or their normal routine to recover. It is essential to get as much rest as possible and avoid strenuous activity, including heavy lifting and exercising, during this time. However, patients should take short walks around the house periodically, when they are able, to minimize the risk of developing blood clots in the lower extremities.
The abdomen may feel numb, tender or sore, and it may be swollen and bruised. These are usual postoperative symptoms which should improve gradually. Some of the aesthetic benefits of the procedure are noticeable immediately after surgery, but it takes about 12 weeks for the results to be complete. This is due to how long it takes for any residual swelling to resolve and for the tissues to heal fully.
Learn More About Abdominoplasty
Tummy tuck surgery is a positive, life-changing experience that improves individuals’ self-esteem as well as their overall quality of life. Dr. Fasching is committed to giving patients the results they desire from abdominoplasty, so they enjoy an improved quality of life.
To schedule a one-on-one consultation with Dr. Fasching to learn more about abdominoplasty, please contact his practice by calling (763) 577-7500.