Mini Tummy Tuck
What is a mini-tummy tuck? A mini-tummy tuck is a procedure that is a variation of a standard tummy tuck or a full abdominoplasty. A mini-tummy tuck differs from a full abdominoplasty in the length of the incision, the time of surgery, and the recovery time in this more limited, less invasive procedure.
In examination of a patient presenting to my office for tummy tuck surgery, there are some women who present with localized fatty deposits primarily in the lower abdomen and anterior hip region. They may have some fullness also in the lower abdomen due to muscle separation but it tends to be confined to the area below the umbilicus and does not extend into the upper abdomen. Frequently, patients may have an old cesarean section scar from pregnancy. This type of patient is an ideal candidate for a so called mini-tummy tuck or mini abdominoplasty.
In a mini-tummy tuck, an incision is made very similar to a C-section incision low in the pubic region. The scar is placed strategically so it can be hidden in a small 2-piece bathing suit. Frequently, liposuction of the lower abdomen and possibly the upper abdomen and waist and hip region can be done at the same time as a mini-tummy tuck if indicated. After the incision is made, the skin is loosened from the underlying abdominal muscles up to the level of the belly button. Frequently there is a separation of the abdominal wall muscles and when it is confined to the lower abdomen, it is quite easy to reapproximate these muscles from the umbilicus to the pubic area obtaining a flatter abdomen.
After this is done, the excess skin and fat is excised and the incision closed. A small drain may be placed which is usually removed in 2 to 3 days following the surgery. Most patients are placed in a compressive garment to be worn for up to a month particularly if liposuction is done at the same time as the mini-tummy tuck.
A mini-tummy tuck is a wonderful surgical option for those patients who fall into the small category of having a protrusion primarily confined to the lower abdomen with some fatty deposits in these areas. Loose skin, which is primarily in this region, can be removed. Patients, however, with associated deformities in the upper abdomen such as hooding over the belly button from redundant skin or large fatty deposits in the upper abdomen, may be better treated with a full abdominoplasty.
A consultation with Dr. Linderman is the best way to determine if you are a candidate for this less invasive procedure. A mini-tummy tuck generally is done as an outpatient and takes from 1 to 1-1/2 hours depending upon the amount of liposuction which may or may not be done during the procedure. In most cases, Dr. Linderman will perform liposuction when a full tummy tuck or mini-tuck is performed.
The recovery from a mini-tummy tuck is shorter than that of standard full abdominoplasty. Most people can return to work within 1 week of the time of surgery. Returning to the gym and vigorous physical exercise may take 2 to 3 weeks. Associated risks and complications with mini-tummy tuck include infection, bleeding, and fluid collection following removal of a drain. This is a procedure that is quite easily tolerated, and the results are very predictable, and patients tend to be very happy with this procedure. Frequently it can be combined with breast augmentation surgery as a mommy makeover.
To find out more about this less invasive procedure, please visit my website at www.awholenewme.com.By Dr. Richard Linderman