Most people will have heard of a Tummy Tuck. It is a cosmetic procedure, also known as an abdominoplasty, designed to remove loose, excess skin from the abdominal area. However, many patients don’t realise there are many different types of tummy tuck procedures.
Mini Tummy Tuck
The mini tummy tuck is called the mini because it removes a smaller portion of skin, and because the incision is smaller in general. The mini tummy tuck is best for individuals who have most of their issues below the belly button, have a small amount of abdominal skin to be removed and do not have significantly protruding abdominal muscle wall.
This procedure involves a single incision made just above the pubic mound, through which your surgeon will tighten loose muscles and remove the excess skin.
Standard Tummy Tuck
The traditional tummy tuck is ideal for patients who are in good physical health and who have a sizeable portion of loose skin to remove from their midsection. Often, traditional tummy tuck patients have recently lost a great deal of weight or are women who have excess flab and/or weak abdominal muscles post pregnancy.
The incision extends from one hip to the other. However, it is made low in the abdomen just above the pubic area and is typically hidden in the underwear or bikini area. There is also an incision around the belly button and your own belly button is saved and brought through a new opening in the abdominal skin. The abdominal muscles are also repaired and sometimes Liposuction of the abdominal skin is performed to thin out the front of the abdomen.
Extended Tummy Tuck
For patients with a greater amount of loose, sagging skin on their abdomen, as well as on their hips and on the sides of their lower back, the extended tummy tuck is the most appropriate procedure choice. Extended tummy tuck patients also usually have excess fat in these body regions that need to be removed so it is common to have liposuction to remove these excess fat cells and drain extra fluids.
In extended tummy tuck surgery, a long incision is made in the abdominal area that reaches around the hips to the lower back. The plastic surgeon then tightens muscles in the abdomen and around the hips, and removes any unnecessary loose skin before suturing the incision. Like with the traditional tummy tuck, the belly button must be repositioned to correspond with the patient’s newly transformed body shape.
Another procedure you may hear of is a Belt Lipectomy (or circumferential abdominoplasty) which is essentially a 360 degree tummy tuck.
A belt lipectomy is typically used for patients who have lost a large amount of weight, often following weight loss surgery, and now have loose, overhanging skin around their body. Liposuction may work well for patients with localized fat deposits, but if you have stretch marks, cellulite, flabby skin and muscles, you’ll benefit more from circumferential abdominoplasty which gives a complete lower body lift, taking care of flabby buttocks and thighs, belly fat, and love handles all in the same operation.