Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty)
Tighten Weak Abdominal Muscles and Remove Excess Skin and Fat
Abdominoplasty, also known as a tummy tuck, is a surgical procedure to remove skin and fat from the abdomen and to tighten the underlying muscles of the abdominal wall. It is frequently combined with Liposuction, so you are encouraged to also read our information on liposuction. A tummy tuck may also be performed during another type of surgery, for instance at the completion of a hysterectomy or other gynecologic surgery.
Tummy tuck surgery can markedly improve the appearance of your abdomen. The combined effects of aging, gravity, childbirth, fluctuations in weight, and a loss of skin elasticity all contribute to loss of tone in the abdomen as we age.
Dr. Revis approaches abdominoplasty to meet your specific needs. This means adequately assessing three factors — excess skin, excess fat, and muscle weakness. Each of these components will determine which procedure is best for you. With only mild fat excess and good skin elasticity, you may be a candidate for liposuction alone. For mild fat excess and skin excess confined to the area below your belly button, you may be a candidate for a mni-abdominoplasty with or without liposuction. For more severe excess skin and fat as well as patients who have muscle weakness or laxity, you will most likely require a full abdominoplasty to achieve the best results.
If you are planning a future pregnancy or anticipate a significant loss of weight in the future, it is probably best to postpone your tummy tuck until after these events have occurred to optimize your results.
Following tummy tuck surgery, many patients experience an immediate improvement in their self-esteem and discover a greater self-confidence. In addition, many also find greater access to different clothing styles and fashions and are less self-conscious at the gym, around the pool, or at the beach.
If you think you might be a good candidate for a tummy tuck, this page will give you a basic understanding of the procedure and the results you can expect. The cornerstone of Dr. Revis' approach is to individualize treatment to your specific circumstances and goals and to ensure that you have an adequate understanding of the issues involved so that you are able to make a fully informed decision. This will help you achieve the appearance you desire with the least invasive procedure available, thus creating a mutually rewarding experience. Dr. Revis invites you to visit his office for a complimentary consultation to discuss the procedure in greater detail. You are also invited to email Dr. Revis with your questions, or we can mail you more detailed information regarding the procedure.
As you consider plastic surgery, one of the most important decisions you will make is choosing your surgeon. Our pledge to you is to provide the latest, state of the art cosmetic plastic surgery in a safe and professional environment. Dr. Revis is a recognized specialist in the field of cosmetic plastic surgery and is board certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, the only plastic surgery board recognized by the American Board of Medical Specialties. He is also an active member of the American Society of Plastic Surgeons and has also been named among "America's Top Surgeons" by the Consumers' Research Council of America.
Our goal is to provide you with the ultimate patient experience. Our well-trained staff will help you understand your procedure, our financial policies, the scheduling of your surgery, and your post-operative care. We are available to assist you during our regular office hours, Monday through Friday. Dr. Revis is also available 24 hours a day to post-surgical patients; he will give you his cell phone number after surgery so that you will always be able to reach him with any questions or concerns you might have during your recovery.
During your initial consultation, Dr. Revis will inquire about your medical history, prior procedures, medications, allergies, and your motivations for seeking plastic surgery. It is very important that you be thorough when providing your medical history, as this information helps to prevent complications during your care. When asked about medications, be sure to include any vitamin or herbal preparations, as these can affect your blood pressure and clotting ability. Honesty regarding your use of tobacco and alcohol is also very important, as these may have a profound impact on your recovery period and your ability to heal following your procedure.
After reviewing your medical history, Dr. Revis will discuss your concerns, priorities and motivations for pursuing plastic surgery, as well as your fears. After examining you, Dr. Revis will be able to offer advice and options to help you achieve the appearance you desire. He will explain the advantages and disadvantages of the different options you have before you.
At the completion of your consultation, our Patient Coordinator will give you a written estimate of the cost of your procedure. At this time, you will also have the option to schedule your procedure if you so choose. The decision to undergo surgery is a very important one, and the final decision should be given very careful consideration. Dr. Revis realizes the importance of this decision, and at no time will you be pressured to make a decision. You are also encouraged to bring your spouse, significant other, family member, or a friend to your consultation.
Where Your Procedure Will Be Performed
Dr. Revis has been granted staff privileges at our local hospitals and outpatient surgery centers. In the interest of the safety of his patients, he only performs surgery in fully accredited facilities with the proper services and staff. Dr. Revis usually performs tummy tucks at Broward General Medical Center or Imperial Point Medical Center (fully accredited hospitals) or the Imperial Point Surgery Center (a fully accredited ambulatory surgery center). The staff of these facilities are very experienced in the care of plastic surgery patients in general and specifically in the care of Dr. Revis' patients.
Types of Anesthesia
Anesthesia is an essential part of any surgical procedure and must be performed safely. General anesthesia is the deepest form of anesthesia. You are asleep, feel no pain, and will not remember the procedure. This form of anesthesia is usually preferred for tummy tuck surgery.
Intravenous sedation, also called twilight sleep, is a combination of local anesthetic administered at the surgical site by Dr. Revis and intravenous sedation administered by the anesthesiologist. You breathe for yourself, but you are in a deep sleep throughout the procedure. You should feel no pain, and you will not remember the procedure.
An intermediate form of anesthesia, the laryngeal mask airway (LMA), is a relatively new technique. This technique is similar to twilight sleep in that you are breathing on your own, but the method of sedation differs. With an LMA, you actually breathe anesthetic gases administered by the anesthesiologist, rather than receive intravenous sedation via your intravenous line. These anesthetic gases cause you to sleep during the procedure. At the completion of the procedure, the gases are turned off and you wake up from your sleep. You will feel no pain, and you will not remember the procedure.
The prevention of post-operative nausea and vomiting is also a focus of Dr. Revis' approach to abdominoplasty. To improve your overall experience and ensure you feel better faster following your tummy tuck, he has developed a technique that has resulted in a very low incidence of post-operative nausea and vomiting. You will be given an intravenous dose of Zofran at the beginning of your operation. Zofran is a newer drug which is currently the best medication available to prevent nausea and vomiting. Dr. Revis feels it is a very important component of his overall approach to make sure that your experience is as pleasant as possible.
Dr. Revis will discuss all of these options with you more thoroughly at the time of your consultation, and please ask him about anything you do not understand.
Details of the Procedure
Tummy tuck surgery usually takes two to three hours to perform, depending on whether or not you are also having liposuction performed. After you are properly anesthetized, Dr. Revis will make the incisions necessary for removal of excess skin and fat. Depending on the amount of improvement you desire, this incision may extend all the way from hip bone to hip bone (full abdominoplasty), or may be limited to only the width of the pubic hairline (mini-abdominoplasty).
After the incision has been made, Dr. Revis gently elevates the skin and fat off of the underlying muscles of the abdominal wall. If needed, these muscles are tightened using sutures. Some patients have hernias in the abdominal wall, and these may also be repaired during a tummy tuck.
After the muscles have been tightened, Dr. Revis removes excess skin and fat and redrapes the skin over the underlying muscles. One or more drains may be placed beneath the incision. These slender, rubber tubes assist in draining any fluid that may accumulate beneath the incision and delay your healing.
The incisions are carefully closed to minimize your scar. Dr. Revis uses a technique in which all of the sutures are placed beneath the skin and are absorbed by your body. Not having to undergo suture removal has improved patient comfort and satisfaction.
A sterile dressing is applied to the incisions, and a compression garment or abdominal binder is placed over your abdomen. This compression garment or binder helps support your abdominal wall during healing, decreases post-operative swelling, and helps decrease any bruising that may occur.
Products to Help You Heal
SinEcch Arnica Montana is a natural product from Sweden which has been shown in clinical studies to reduce post-operative bruising and swelling. Begun the evening prior to surgery, this product is continued for four days post-operatively.
Scarguard MD A combination of hydrocortisone, silicone and Vitamin E, this product is painted on your scars topically like nail polish beginning three weeks after surgery, and it helps your scars fade so that they fade as much as possible.
These products are available for purchase in our office. Please ask us about these products and others if you have any further questions about whether or not these would be beneficial for you during your healing period.
After Your Procedure
Tummy tuck surgery may be performed as an outpatient procedure, or you may choose to stay in the hospital overnight. If you choose to go home, you will recover in the recovery room for approximately one hour prior to being released in the company of a friend or family member. We also have a private duty nurse available to care for you in the comfort and privacy of your own home if you so choose.
The antibiotics that were prescribed during your preoperative visit (usually Augmentin) should be taken twice daily beginning on the evening prior to surgery. Continue this medication until it is gone. The pain medication prescribed by Dr. Revis during your preoperative visit (usually Lortab or Vicodin) should be taken fairly regularly, every four hours or so, during the first 24 hours (when you are not asleep, of course). Most patients find that they are able to transition to Tylenol after three or four days. It is not safe to drive a car within 24 hours of taking pain medication, as your reflexes and alertness may be altered.
You should plan to take it easy following your surgery. No strenuous activities, heavy lifting (over 20 pounds), aerobic exercises, swimming, contact sports, tennis, or golf should be planned for the first three weeks. As Dr. Revis monitors your recovery, he will advise you when it is safe to resume specific activities.
You should plan to wear the abdominal binder or compression garment for three weeks following surgery. Dr. Revis will remove the drainage tubes within several days following surgery.
The Results You Can Expect
You will notice an improvement in your abdominal contour immediately. However, your shape will continue to improve in the following weeks as the mild swelling subsides. You should be up and walking the day following surgery, although your abdomen will be sore for several days. You should able to resume your normal daily activities within several days following surgery, and you should be able to resume all of your physical activities within three weeks of surgery.
Please call (954) 630-2009 or email Dr. Revis for further information or to schedule your complimentary consultation.
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