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Tummy tuck
Fast Facts

What is it? The removal of excess fat from the abdomen, often together with tightening of abdominal muscles.

Normal healing time: A few weeks for initial recovery, followed by several more weeks for swelling to ease completely.

Average price in the US: $4000 - $20,000 or higher depending on the extent of the procedure.

In the battle of the bulge, a tummy tuck is a medical victory over middle-aged spread, or as a technique to tighten up the stomach, eliminate stretch marks and remove excess skin following pregnancy or extreme weight loss.


What is a tummy tuck?

The procedure, technically called abdominoplasty, involves the removal of excess skin and fat from the abdomen and, often, tightening up the abdominal muscles. The results are a flatter stomach and in some cases, a smaller waist. To help in the removal of excess fat, a tummy tuck is sometimes used in combination with liposuction.


Types of tummy tucks

The two most common procedures are the full tummy tuck, which usually requires a hospital stay, and the "mini tummy tuck" which is usually done on an outpatient basis. Depending on its extent, the average cost for abdominoplasty ranges anywhere from $4,000 to $20,000.

The mini involves less skin removal and results in a smaller scar. The full tummy tuck normally will leave a scar across a large part of the lower abdomen, in the area known as the bikini line. The scar is hidden by clothes... and even by all but the skimpiest bikinis.


Recovery

After surgery, residual bruising and swelling is expected and patients are usually advised to avoid sitting up for long periods. Overall, tummy tuck recovery time usually takes longer than any other cosmetic procedure. This is partly due to the time it takes the abdominal muscles to recover and to the scarring that may be noticeable for up to 12 months following surgery.


More information about tummy tucks around the Web:

Find out more about tummy tucks at top sites offering expert opinion, pictures and illustrations, questions to ask your doctor, facts on who makes an ideal candidate for the procedure, and more information on abdominoplasty....

Abdominoplasty - Information on who makes the best candidates for a tummy tuck, planning and preparing for surgery, types of anesthesia, description of surgery, post-operative care and recovery.

Tummy Tuck - Procedures - Illustrated guide to the initial evaluation, a discussion on insurance coverage, tummy tuck techniques, risks and benefits, a description of the surgery, recovery and post-operative care.

Tummy Tuck - Board Certified Plastic Surgeons - Extensive facts and info on the tummy tuck procedure, related risks and complications, estimated costs, a discussion on endoscopic, lower and reconstructive abdominoplasty, and related before and after photos.

Abdominoplasty - Wikipedia - Good overview with information on what the procedure involves including details on complete or partial abdominoplasty, recovery time and average costs, with related references and resources.

This information is intended as reference and not as medical advice.
All treatment decisions should be made by medical professionals.

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