Yo-Yo dieting – the cyclic gaining and losing of weight – often results in loose skin around the waistline and a large sagging midsection that is out of proportion with the rest of the body. An abdominoplasty, or tummy tuck, can create a flatter tummy, bringing it into balance with the rest of the body.
For plus size patients, a tummy tuck does more than improve appearance. A plus size tummy tuckTM can restore muscle strength and stabilizes the back by repairing the abdominal muscles and reducing the weight of the midsection.
High BMI patients and tummy tuck
A tummy tuck is becoming among the most popular procedures for post-pregnancy women, as well as men and women with a high body/mass index. A tummy tuck removes hanging skin, abdominal fat and tightens abdominal muscles that have separated or weakened. People with stretch marks are delighted to find that most of these have been removed with the excess skin.
While it is optimum that patients have reached their optimum weight before surgery, plus size patients can benefit from a tummy tuck provided they are healthy enough for surgery.
Patients who have undergone massive weight loss make up the majority of patients who are seeking abdominoplasty. These patients are good candidates for an overweight tummy tuck. Patients with asthma, high blood pressure, diabetes or heart disease would not be good candidates for elective surgery of any kind.
Dr. Repta is a board certified plastic surgeon in Scottsdale, with many years of experience helping heavier patients achieve their goals. If weight is stable and they are in good health, he can provide a surgical plan that will safely and effectively treat a plus size patient.
Advice from Dr. Repta:
How much weight do I need to lose to be a good candidate for a tummy tuck?
"This is a question that I often get from patients that are considering a tummy tuck.
The vast majority of patients that undergo a tummy tuck are to some extent overweight. Whether the patent is undergoing a tummy tuck because of weight loss or after pregnancy, most patients still have some degree of excess weight at the time of their tummy tuck consultation and at the time of their tummy tuck procedure.
While it would be ideal for each patient to be at a perfect weight prior to getting a tummy tuck procedure, this is not realistic and may not even lead to the best result possible. I have found that the tummy tuck process alone can result in improved shape and some additional weight loss when designed and performed properly.
I often tell my patients to live a life with regards to diet and exercise that they are planning on maintaining after their tummy tuck. If they are planning on losing a significant amount of weight, delaying their tummy tuck may be reasonable so as not to have residual loose skin after the weight loss. If, however, the weight loss is going to be moderate such as 20-30 pounds, a tummy tuck can be performed since that amount of weight loss is often jump started by the tummy tuck procedure and the overall tummy tuck result will not be diminished.
So, if you are considering a tummy tuck but not sure if you are a good candidate, the best thing you can do is to schedule a consultation. The extra weight that you may be struggling to lose may not prevent you from getting an excellent tummy tuck result."
A tummy tuck involves making an incision from the hip bone to hip bone, very low over the pubic bone. This is so that the resulting scar can be hidden under a bathing suit or underwear. In some plus size tummy tuckTM surgery, an incision is also made vertically from the navel. Dr. Repta will discuss where he plans to place the incisions prior to surgery.
As a board certified cosmetic surgeon, his goal is to create an aesthetic result. Incision placement is a big part of any surgical plan as there will always be a scar after an incision.
Liposuction can be done during abdominoplasty in some cases and in others, liposuction must be done prior to surgery. Defining the waistline and contouring the abdomen will usually involve some liposuction.
The abdominal muscles are then sutured together restoring strength to the area. This part of the procedure is vital to obtaining a flat profile and to restoring abdominal strength.
Next, excess skin is removed and with it most of the stretch marks. An important aesthetic part of the procedure is the repositioning of the belly button, which must be moved to a natural position after the excess skin is removed.
The incision is then closed using a multi-layered technique, which evenly applies tension to the entire incision. These result in a very thin, almost invisible scar, once healing is complete.
Recovering from plus size tummy tuckTM
Patients should arrange at least two weeks off from work and their daily activities for the initial phase of recovery. Exercise should be postponed for at least four weeks. Those who have strenuous jobs will need to get an estimate from Dr. Repta on how much time to arrange for recovery.
Recovery is much easier when preparations are made well in advance. Since the abdominal muscles will be sore for several weeks, small movements will be difficult. Those with small children should arrange for full-time assistance, at least for the first few weeks. Lifting anything heavier than a few pounds is not recommended until well into the recovery.
For more information on the abdominoplasty recovery process, please visit Dr. Repta's tummy tuck recovery tips article.
The appearance and feel of the pubic area right above the private area is a common area of concern for many patients that are carrying extra weight or have lost a significant amount of weight. Loose skin, extra fat, or the combination of the two can create extra skin or fullness within the pubic area.
FUPA is a common term that references fatty tissue in the pubic area. Although the "P" in FUPA originally referenced the female private area, we understand that both fatty tissue and loose skin can be an issue for both male and female patients. Therefore, for us FUPA stands for Fat/Full Upper Pubic Area.
Treatment of FUPA can be accomplished in a variety of ways including:
Frequently, patients such as plus size tummy tuck candidates, also present with concerns of a FUPA. By custom tailoring FUPA surgery in Scottsdale, the area can be thinned, reduced, lifted, and tightened at the same time.
Fleur de Lis Tummy Tuck
If you’ve lost a significant amount of weight and are living with an excess of sagging skin and tissue, our Scottsdale fleur de lis (FDL) tummy tuck may be the perfect technique to restore a flat, taut, youthful tummy. FDL tummy tucks follow the same basic steps as a standard tummy tuck, but the difference is in the shape and location of the incisions.
A standard tummy tuck involves a linear incision near your waistline to remove excess skin, repair stretched or split muscles in your abdomen, and then pull the remaining skin down to give you a tight, flat tummy. However, if you have a more extensive quantity of excess skin, then a standard tummy tuck may not be the best approach. FDL tummy tucks allow for the removal of skin vertically, which a standard tummy tuck does not do.
An FDL tummy tuck requires careful planning to ensure proper healing and natural, firm skin contour; the right amount of skin removed in the right shape can enhance your waist and provide you with a natural-looking belly button structure, at the right spot on your body.
Understanding and using the anatomy of the abdomen properly, we can create a seamless transition where the contour flows naturally from your breasts down through your belly button to the pubic area. FDL tummy tucks are the perfect complement to the fantastic achievement of achieving significant weight loss.
Who is a candidate for a Fleur de Lis tummy tuck?
If you’ve lost a significant amount of weight and your skin no longer has the elasticity needed to tighten around your new abdomen both horizontally and vertically, then you may be a candidate for an FDL tummy tuck. You must be willing to have a vertical incision and understand that there is a post-care healing program that may require two to three weeks of recovery. Most patients who have the amount of excess skin to warrant an FDL tummy tuck find the incredible results to be extremely satisfying and definitely worthwhile.
Preparation is the key to recovery
Preparing the area that will be used for recovery is also beneficial. If possible avoid stairs for the first few weeks. Have any necessary items such as your medications, magazines or books, the TV remote, your cell phone, etc. within easy reach.
Make sure all prescriptions have been filled and that any other household chores have been done or designated to someone else. Resting during the initial phase will make the rest of your recovery faster and easier and will impact your results.
There will be complete instructions provided covering immediate post-operative care and what to expect, as well as instructions on bathing, caring for the incision and when to return for your first check up.
Following Dr. Repta’s instructions concerning wound care and the medications and supplements to avoid is the best way of ensuring that your results will be as exciting as you hoped they would be.
Come into Dr. Repta's office to speak with him, and go over your options. He will listen to your concerns and offer you his recommendations based on his many years of delivering among the best plus size tummy tuckTM in Scottsdale.
Schedule a Consultation
If you would like to know more about your Scottsdale abdominoplasty options, request a consultation online. Or if you prefer, you are welcome to call the office at 855-377-3782 and one of our staff members will be happy to assist you.Schedule Online