Extended Tummy Tuck Surgery: The Surgical Procedure
Dr. Craig Foster has helped many patients in New York City with their body sculpting and contouring needs. One of the most common surgeries for these issues is the tummy tuck (abdominoplasty), a surgery that tightens the abdominal region following weight loss. Sometimes a traditional tummy tuck is not enough for patients, however, which is where the extended tummy tuck may be an ideal option.
About Extended Tummy Tuck Surgery
The extended tummy tuck is a variation on the traditional tummy tuck. It is performed when the traditional tummy tuck is unable to achieve optimal body sculpting results for patients who have experienced substantial weight loss.
How Extended Tummy Tuck Differs from Traditional Tummy Tuck Surgery
The traditional tummy tuck involves three incisions: one circular incision made around the navel, one lateral incision along the lower abdomen that spans from hipbone to hipbone, and one vertical incision that connects these two other incisions. The resulting combination of these incisions is not unlike the shape of a ship anchor.
During an extended tummy tuck, the size of the lateral incision along the lower abdominal region is much larger. In most cases, this means that the lateral incision starts at the back of the hipbone, spans around the side along the lower abdomen, and then ends at the back of the opposite hipbone. This allows major revision of the lower abdominal area, love handles, and parts of the hip area as well.
Ideal Candidates for Extended Tummy Tuck Surgery
The best candidates for extended tummy tuck surgery are people who have lost a considerable amount of weight. For instance, people who were morbidly obese who have lost weight through bariatric surgery or natural means are often good candidates for extended tummy tuck surgery given the amount of loose skin they have around their abdominal region.
It's important for patients to also be in good overall health and not suffer from any kinds of health problems that would make surgery a risky proposition. It's also important for patients to understand the nature of surgical scarring and that they have realistic expectations about the overall healing process as well.
The Extended Tummy Tuck Procedure
The extended tummy tuck procedure is performed under general anesthetic in order to reduce any undue discomfort for patients. The incisions are made as described above, allowing the surgeon to adjust the underlying structures of the abdominal region. Any excess pockets of fat are removed using liposuction and excess skin is excised. The remaining skin is then pulled tighter.
Recovery from Extended Tummy Tuck Surgery
After an extended tummy tuck, patients will need a lot of rest. Soreness and discomfort is common. While strenuous physical activity should be avoided for a few weeks, patients are encouraged to walk in their home when they are well enough to do so in order to improve their circulation and aid in the healing experience.
Multiple follow-up visits will be scheduled in order for patients to have their recovery monitored. The use of a compression garment in the first weeks of healing is common, as this garment will help support the abdominal region and prevent undue swelling and discomfort in the process.
Other Options to Consider for a Total Body Lift
Following substantial weight loss, it's not uncommon for patients to require additional surgeries that revise the body contour, such as procedures that target the thighs, the upper arms, and the chest. A full suite of surgeries may be designed in order for a patient to undergo a total body lift, improving overall contour and skin laxity in the process. These matters can be discussed in more detail during your visit.
Learn More About Body Contouring Surgery
For more information about extended tummy tuck surgery and your many other options out there for advanced body contouring and sculpting, it's important that you contact our cosmetic plastic surgery center today. Dr. Foster and his entire team looks forward to meeting you in person and helping you achieve all of your aesthetic goals.