All You Need to Know About Tummy Tucks Video

Learn about the ins and outs of tummy tuck surgery from board certified surgeons, Dr. Lori H. Saltz and Dr. Johan Brahme, including ideal candidates, tummy tuck recovery time, and the various techniques used during this procedure.


All You Need to Know About Tummy Tuck Video Transcript

Woman: There’s two parts to a tummy tuck. One is there’s extra skin and you’re removing that tightening the tissues. The other is tightening the muscle because you have two muscles down the center of your abdomen and there’s space in between. If you’ve gained a lot of weight, you gain weight on the inside that pushes those muscles apart just like pregnancy does. The tissue in between, it doesn’t have contractile fiber like the muscles.

So you can do all the sit-ups in the world and make the muscles shorter and tighter, but you’re not doing anything to the tissue in between. So it can allow the muscles to come apart and that’s part of the problem that women have after they’ve had several pregnancies. They can do sit-ups, but it doesn’t quite flatten their tummy. So what we do…some people have almost no extra skin, but their muscles are just, especially women that have had twins. Their muscles have just been pulled apart so far.

Man: So what we do is that we bring them together and tighten them. That’s like wearing a girdle on the inside so patients tend to lose weight after they have a tummy tuck. It’s not uncommon for somebody to drop another 10 or 15 pounds after their surgery.

Woman: So it’s a combination of each, that we’re tightening the muscles and the skin, both.

Liposuction, for instance, will remove fat, but it won’t tighten the skin and the muscle. Often the two go together and you have to address the whole situation. If the flap or the abdominal wall is really thick with fat you may not be able to pull down very much and get much of a result because it’s really the thickness this way, not the excess this way. And even tightening the muscle isn’t going to show that much. So then you need to think about maybe doing lypo also. Often you need to address the whole trunk and not just doing the skin but doing fat, or the skin may go all the way around or part way around. You need to address the whole trunk.

The initial recovery period. You’re going to be not moving a whole lot for a few days. We nowadays have a combination of medications that we give. One is that we inject in the covering, under the covering of the muscle at the time of surgery that lasts for several days. That decreases the pain and decreases the need for narcotics in the first few days, which really has helped. The other is a pill that we give before surgery. The combination has seemed to reduce the discomfort remarkably.

Man: So I tell patients ten days to two weeks to take off from work if you’re going to do a tummy tuck. Now, a lot of people combine procedures. They’ll say, “Well, I breastfed four children. My tummy is sagging, my breasts are sagging. So, we’ll do both surgeries together.” In that case usually the recovery time is about two weeks as well.