If you follow a healthy diet and exercise regularly, but still cannot achieve the firm, flat abdominal profile you desire, you might benefit from undergoing abdominoplasty (“tummy tuck” surgery) with San Jose plastic surgeon Dr. R. Laurence Berkowitz. For appropriate candidates, tummy tuck surgery is an effective way to tighten and tone the midsection.
Why Tummy Tuck Surgery Is Needed
Certain factors — such as pregnancy, major weight loss, hereditary traits or the natural aging process — can take a toll on the midsection. Pregnancy or extreme weight fluctuations can cause the abdominal skin to stretch out and lose its elasticity, so it can no longer shrink back to a smaller size and shape once the excess weight has been lost. In addition, pregnancy can greatly damage the abdominal muscles, often causing them to separate. Once these developments occur, surgical intervention becomes necessary to restore a tight, toned abdomen.
Who Is a Suitable Candidate?
The main objectives of tummy tuck surgery are to remove loose, excess abdominal skin that has lost its elasticity and to repair the underlying musculature, for a toned abdominal contour. For this reason, appropriate abdominoplasty candidates are not simply overweight, but have poor skin elasticity and loose abdominal skin. (Liposuction alone might be a better treatment option for individuals who have good skin health but suffer from stubborn fat deposits throughout the abdomen.)
In addition, suitable tummy tuck candidates generally include those who:
- Are in good mental and physical health overall
- Are at a body weight that they feel they can maintain after surgery (Gaining a substantial amount of weight can counteract the aesthetic benefits of the procedure.)
- Are finished having children
- Are not currently breastfeeding
- Have realistic expectations for what abdominoplasty can accomplish
- Understand the possible risks and rewards of the procedure
The only way to determine whether you are an appropriate abdominoplasty candidate is to visit Dr. Berkowitz for a consultation. That way, he can evaluate your abdominal profile and skin health, listen to your aesthetic concerns and suggest an appropriate treatment plan, which may involve liposuction for optimal aesthetic results or a modified tummy tuck approach, sometimes called “mini tummy tuck.”
What to Expect During Abdominoplasty
Abdominoplasty is generally performed on an outpatient basis, under general anesthesia. Dr. Berkowitz first performs liposuction, if applicable. He then makes a horizontal incision across the lower abdomen that extends from one hipbone to the other. Although the incision is significant, Dr. Berkowitz strategically positions it in an area that is easily concealed by the underwear or bikini line.
The San Jose tummy tuck surgeon then removes any excess abdominal skin before repairing the supporting tissue structures. To do so, he places permanent, internal sutures in the muscle fascia, using a crisscross pattern to pull the muscles together and hold them in place after surgery. Dr. Berkowitz re-drapes the remaining skin, pulling it taut, before closing the incision with sutures.
He often uses a second incision to adjust the position of the navel, so it is in line with the new, flatter abdominal contour. This incision is concealed within the belly button. Once Dr. Berkowitz is content with the new abdominal profile, he dresses the treatment area with soft, fluffy bandages, with a compression garment on top.
Find Out More About Tummy Tuck
If you feel you could benefit from undergoing abdominoplasty, please come in for a visit to find out more. To schedule a personal consultation with Dr. Berkowitz to establish your candidacy and hear more details about the procedure, contact his practice by calling (408) 559-7177 today.