Large weight loss, pregnancy, and excess fat can all cause the abdomen to develop a flabby and bulging appearance. The loose skin and weakened abdominal muscles that result cannot be corrected through diet and exercise alone, but require surgical repair. In a tummy tuck procedure, Dr. Newall removes excess skin and repairs the weakened muscles in order to restore a flat, smooth appearance to the abdomen.
Anesthesia – One of our board-certified anesthesiologists will administer the sedatives or general anesthesia. Various monitors will be set up to check your heart, blood pressure, pulse, and the amount of oxygen circulating in your blood.
The incision – Depending on the type of tummy tuck performed (mini, full, extended) a horizontal incision will be made beneath the bikini line allowing the skin to be lifted. Once the skin is lifted out of the way Dr. Newall will then repair the abdominal muscles by tightening them back together with sutures. The second incision is then made around the navel to correct loose skin in the upper abdomen. It may be possible to improve the appearance of stretch marks if loose skin that has stretch marks is removed from the lower abdomen, although a dramatic change should not be expected. The remaining skin is then pulled down and sutured back and a new opening for the belly button is created. Once in place sutures are used to close the remaining incisions.
Recovery – You will be bandaged up where the incisions were made and placed in a compression garment to reduce swelling and aid the healing process. The compression garment will be worn for approximately 4 weeks after surgery. To help promote blood circulation, you will be encouraged to get out of bed and take short walks. Depending on your specific case you may have drains (small tubes) temporarily placed at the incision to help drain excess fluid. Instructions will be given to care for drains (if placed), medications, care of surgical sites and incisions, and when to come in for follow-up appointments will be given.
Scar Treatment – The scar which is below the bikini line will take time to heal. The scar can take months to a year to fade. Dr. Newall may suggest products and/or treatments to help fade the scar as much as possible. Fraxel laser therapy helps to diminish the scar.
Results – The results from a tummy tuck are long lasting, in most cases, if a stable weight is maintained. If you are planning substantial weight loss or pregnancy, you may wish to postpone abdominoplasty surgery to avoid fluctuations in weight that could impact your results.
Dr. Newall is a nationally recognized expert for his ability to combine a tummy tuck with liposuction to achieve a toned and tightened appearance that some thought could only be achieved through a more extensive body lift. You may be a candidate for this procedure if you have pockets of unwanted fat in addition to loose abdominal skin.
1. Are you certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery?
Dr. Newall is board certified with The American Board of Plastic Surgery
2. Were you specifically trained in the field of plastic surgery?
Yes, he was trained at St. Joseph Microsurgical Training Center specifically for Aesthetic Surgery.
3. How many years of plastic surgery training have you had?
Dr. Newall received his medical degree at Georgetown Medical School. He continued his education at Fairview General Hospital where he was Chief Resident General Surgery and St. Joseph Hospital where he was Chief Resident Plastic Surgery.
4. Do you have hospital privileges to perform this procedure? If so, at which hospitals?
Dr. Newall as privileges at ACPS SurgiCentre (current), Memorial Hermann Memorial City Medical Center, The Woman’s Hospital of Texas, St. Luke’s Episcopal Hospital, Spring Branch Hospital, and Bayou City Medical Center.
5. Is the office-based surgical facility accredited by a nationally- or state-recognized accrediting agency, or is it state-licensed or Medicare-certified?
The ACPS SurgiCentre is an AAAASF (American Association for Accreditation of Ambulatory Certified Surgical Facility) surgical facility. The facility exceeds accepted standards for private surgical facilities and is licensed by the Texas Department of Health.
6. Who are the best candidates for a tummy tuck?
An abdominoplasty (tummy tuck) procedure is suitable for both men and women who are in good overall health. Women who have muscles and skin stretched by pregnancies may find this procedure useful to tighten the underlying muscles and reduce the excess fat. The procedure is also a good fit for individuals who have experienced significant weight loss, yet still have loose skin in the abdominal area.
On the other hand, if you are a woman who is still considering to have children, then you may want to postpone the tummy tuck surgery until you are done having children. The reason being, during surgery, the vertical muscles are tightened and future pregnancies can divide those muscles.
7. What type of abdominoplasty will I need?
The three main types of tummy tucks include the mini tummy tuck, standard tummy tuck, and the extended tummy tuck.
The mini tummy tuck removes a smaller portion of the skin. This procedure is best for individuals with a small amount of belly fat that won’t be reduced by diet and exercise.
The standard tummy tuck is ideal for both men and women who are in good physical health but have a mediocre amount of loose skin in the abdominal area. This form of a tummy tuck is suitable for patients who have lost a significant amount of weight, or are women who have excess fat and/or weak muscles after pregnancy.
The extended tummy tuck is best for patients with a large amount of loose skin on their abdomen, hips, and along the sides of their lower back.
During consultation, the board certified plastic surgeon will thoroughly examine you and determine the best procedure(s) for you.
8. What are the risks and complications associated with the tummy tuck procedure?
Similarly to any other type of surgery, there will be associated risks and complications. It is crucial for the patient to be in good overall health before undergoing cosmetic surgery. Typically, the physician or surgeon will conduct blood/urine tests on the patient to check for medical clearance.
The possible risks of abdominoplasty include scarring, bleeding (hematoma), infection, fluid accumulation, blood clots, numbness, pain, swelling, bruising, recurrent looseness of skin, fluid accumulation, and anesthesia risks.