Traditional abdominoplasty, more commonly known as a tummy tuck, is a body contouring procedure used to target and trim the abdominal area. This popular procedure involves making an incision along the waistline, removing excess fat and tissue, and tightening the muscles of the abdominal wall. It also gets rid of loose or wrinkled skin and stretch marks. Both women and men can benefit from this effective body contouring surgery. In cases where only the lower abdomen needs to be trimmed, a partial abdominoplasty (mini tuck) may be performed.
The traditional full tummy tuck addresses the three defective components (skin, fat, and muscle) so that it benefits patients who opt for a flat stomach and tight skin. Under general anesthesia, a relatively long incision on the bikini line just above the pubic area is made. A second incision is then made around the belly button. The skin and fat together are separated from the abdominal wall and lifted up the rib cage, exposing the rectus muscles fascia (the sheath that covers the muscles and works as an inner girdle). The fascia is then sutured to tighten loose or stretched out muscles below the fascia, forming a tighter abdominal wall and a thinner waist. The skin is stretched down, and excess skin and fat are removed. A new opening is cut on the skin for re-positioning of the belly button, in which drains are typically inserted to eliminate fluid and blood buildup. Every effort is made to hide the scars in the bikini area. The incision is then closed, and a firm dressing is placed on the abdomen. A small, but effective, liposuction is often performed in conjunction with the tummy tuck. This is done to remove excess fat from the hips and flanks for a more satisfying contour result.
The traditional tummy tuck is associated with a relatively high complication rate due to the large undermining of the anterior abdominal flap, which can cause extensive trauma and compromise the blood supply to the abdominal flap. General anesthesia is typically required for the surgery because of the extensive tissue dissection and manipulation.
Dr. Shu has adopted a revolutionary minimally invasive approach to tummy tucks that can be safely and effectively performed as a surgical procedure completely under local tumescent anesthesia with conscious sedation. The technique, called RejuveTummy™ lipoabdominoplasty, combines two procedures—liposuction of the abdomen and a tummy tuck. Dr. Shu’s technique involves extensive liposuction and preserves the perforating vessels and Scarpa’s fascia, providing a faster recovery time and better body contour with fewer complications compared to a traditional tummy tuck. By avoiding the use of general anesthesia or heavy sedation (and complications associated with this type of anesthesia), this new procedure offers an improved postoperative recovery.
The management of the belly button, skin incisions, and amount of skin removed are identical in both procedures. The tightening of the muscles can be performed with either procedure. However, Dr. Shu’s technique can remove a larger amount of fat, which can improve abdominal contour by thinning the fat layer considerably more compared to a traditional tummy tuck, while also decreasing the risks of skin necrosis. In addition, Dr. Shu’s approach does not require the use of traditional suction drains in some patients.
Patients who hope to either reduce abdominal fat or tighten and smooth abdominal skin will find a solution suited for them here at our cosmetic center. Not only do we offer different forms of liposuction, including laser, Vaser, and body-jet liposuction, Dr. Shu has also adopted a revolutionary tummy tuck technique known as lipoabdominoplasty, which combines liposuction with a tummy tuck. His method will result in faster recovery time and better body contour with fewer complications compared to a traditional tummy tuck. In addition, a mini tummy tuck is available for patients who wish to target fat and improve contour in the lower abdomen. The lipoabdominoplasty can be performed with new surgical techniques under conscious sedation with tumescent anesthesia