Abdominoplasty (Tummy Tuck)

Abdominoplasty (tummy tuck) helps flatten the abdomen by removing excess fat and skin, and tightening muscles. The best candidates for a tummy tuck procedure in Salem, OR are in good physical condition, with pockets of fat or loose skin that have not responded well to diet and exercise. Abdominoplasty can also be appropriate for slightly obese people whose skin has lost some of its elasticity, and for women with skin and muscles stretched from pregnancy. Anyone planning on losing a significant amount of weight, and women planning on having (more) children, should wait before undergoing abdominoplasty.

The Tummy Tuck Procedure

Abdominoplasty takes approximately 3 to 5 hours to perform; the patient is placed under general anesthesia. Two incisions are made: one from hipbone to hipbone close to the pubic area, and another around the navel. Skin is separated from the abdominal muscles, which are then pulled together and stitched into place for a firmer abdomen and narrower waist. The skin flap is then stretched down over the newly tightened muscles, excess skin is removed, and the navel is reattached where it looks natural. The incisions are then closed, and sterile surgical dressings are applied over the sutured areas.


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Recovery After Abdominoplasty

After surgery, a temporary tube may be inserted to drain excess fluid from the surgical site. An overnight hospital stay may be necessary. Recovery time ranges from 3 weeks to 2 months. Abdominoplasty leaves a scar spanning the lower abdomen from hip to hip, although it is low enough to be concealed by a bikini. Maintaining weight with a balanced diet and regular exercise provides long-lasting results.

Risks of Abdominoplasty

In addition to the usual risks associated with surgery and anesthesia, risks associated with tummy tuck include the following:

  • Asymmetry
  • Poor aesthetic result
  • Unsightly scarring
  • Loose skin
  • Numbness in skin sensation
  • Need for revisional surgery

Patients who have had previous abdominal surgery may find that their old scars look more raised, have stretched or are more noticeable in general. Undergoing a scar revision may minimize their prominence. For more information on our tummy tuck (abdominoplasty) procedure, please contact the Salem plastic surgery office of Dr. Austin, or click the link below.

Am I a good candidate for a tummy tuck?

Tummy tucks (abdominoplasty) are most effective in helping those with abdominal wall laxity and skin excess. Most commonly this is after weight loss and/or following pregnancy. With weight loss, the closer one can get to their goal weight, the better the result and the longer the results will last.

How is your tummy tuck procedure performed?

A tummy tuck procedure addresses wall laxity and skin excess. During the procedure, the abdominal wall is tightened and the excess skin is excised from the lower portion of the abdomen. Frequently, liposuction is utilized to improve abdominal contour. The procedure is most commonly performed as a surgical outpatient under general anesthesia at an accredited surgical facility.

What is the scar like after an abdominoplasty?

A standard abdominoplasty is performed through a low transverse abdominal incision. The placement of the incision is low on the abdomen, at or below the level of a standard C-section incision. The sutures utilized are absorbable sutures that do not need to be removed and are placed beneath the skin to minimize scarring. Post operatively we continue to work closely with you to improve final scar outcome.

When can I attempt to work out after a tummy tuck?

Most patients are able to resume some form of exercise approximately 3-4 weeks after surgery. It usually takes a few more weeks before beginning more aggressive exercise such as running or core exercises. We work closely with each patient to get you back to full activity as soon as possible.


If you have any questions or comments, or if you want to learn more about the services Dr. Austin provides, please call 503.561.7000 or submit an online form by clicking here.


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