The majority of Americans aren’t fully satisfied with how their body looks, and this problem is especially prominent among people who are overweight or who have noticed changes due to aging. One of the most common complaints we see here at Rios Center for Plastic Surgery in Edinburg, TX is related to the stomach. A tummy tuck can help you get rid of stubborn pockets of fat and excess skin, so you can finally achieve the smooth shape you desire.
But contrary to popular opinion, this surgery isn’t designed as a weight-loss measure. You will need to be close to your target weight to take advantage of the benefits, which include removing tissues that can’t be shifted with diet and exercise and smoothing out the skin in the stomach region. Let’s have a closer look at abdominoplasty and what it can do for you.
How Much Weight Do You Lose with a Tummy Tuck?
When patients first contact our clinic about this surgery, one of the most frequently asked questions is how much weight they can lose. The answer is that it depends on the individual situation, but it’s often less than you might expect. The procedure serves to change the shape and remove excess tissue from the stomach, but it doesn’t eliminate a great amount of fat.
Many of our patients find that they are around five to ten pounds lighter after surgery. However, you might lose up to 15 pounds if there is a lot of excess skin that needs to be removed. When you come to the clinic, we will examine your cosmetic concerns and determine how we will address your problem. During this initial meeting, we can give you a better idea of how much you might lose during surgery.
Who Can Benefit the Most?
Abdominoplasty is a great way to shape your stomach and regain the smooth, youthful look you’ve been missing. It can work well for people who have lost a lot of weight and are worried about excess skin and tissue that isn’t easy to shift. Similarly, people who are noticing changes due to aging or women who have given birth could be great candidates.
It’s also important to remember that this is elective surgery, so it can only be performed on people who are in good general health. The best way to find out whether you should choose this option is to speak to a professional surgeon, who can assess you and discuss various treatment options with you.
People Who Have Lost Weight
In the US, over 60% of the population is overweight, and around half of them are obese. This causes many preventable diseases and lowers the affected people’s self-esteem. They might struggle more with body image issues than others, and in certain cases, they may even be excluded from some social activities. For this reason, many decide to change their lifestyle and address the problem.
Losing a lot of weight is a major achievement and a reason to be proud of yourself. However, not every part of the body is equally receptive to diet and exercise, and even if you have reached your target weight, you might still have certain “problem areas”. What’s more, loose skin can be a big issue that spoils your great results. The tummy tuck is the perfect solution for patients struggling with this and can help make their efforts visible.
People Who Are Struggling with Aging
As we grow older, our bodies change in a number of ways. Many people notice wrinkling and sagging skin in various areas, and they also find that losing weight is harder than it used to be.
If you are experiencing changes to the shape of your stomach despite maintaining a healthy weight, exercising regularly, and eating a varied diet, this could be related to aging. Your doctor can let you know whether you are eligible for abdominoplasty, which could help you regain the smooth, shapely form of your tummy.
Women After Pregnancy
Many women who have had children find that it is extremely hard to regain their pre-pregnancy shape. Even though you might have lost all the weight you’ve put on, your stomach will look very different. The skin has been stretched, and it’s often difficult for it to return to its previous shape. For this reason, abdominoplasty is great for women who would like to tighten the tissues in their midsection.
Before approving you for surgery, Dr. Rios will speak to you about your goals and future plans. While abdominoplasty is very successful on pregnant women, it shouldn’t be undertaken unless you know that you are done having children. Women who might want to have another baby should hold off, since this will affect your results and potentially require a second surgery.
People in Good General Health
Although abdominoplasty is a routine operation and doesn’t pose much risk to the patient, we must check that you are in good health before proceeding. Anyone who has a severe heart condition, cancer, previous problems during surgery, or certain allergies won’t be able to take part. Similarly, those who need to take medications that might interfere with the outcome should seek an alternative treatment.
What Can You Expect from Surgery?
This surgery is an extremely effective way to augment the results of your weight loss journey or get back to normal after pregnancy. The vast majority of patients see a great improvement in their body shape, and they are thrilled with the outcome of the procedure. However, your results depend on your cooperation at every step of the way.
You will need to follow your doctor’s orders very closely, so the operation is safe and effective. Once you have recovered, you should maintain your healthy lifestyle and keep your weight steady for the long term. That way, your results are permanent, and you won’t have to come back to the clinic for a repeat procedure in the future.
To make sure you remain safe and get the best outcome possible, Dr. Rios and his team will examine your medical history closely. We will determine whether there are any factors that could complicate your operation and then make a decision based on your current health. If you are overweight or obese, we may ask you to lose some weight and then come back, since the tummy tuck won’t remove all the excess fat from your stomach.
Once you are approved, you can start preparing for surgery. Your doctor will ask you to stop taking blood-thinning medications and supplements and to quit smoking. Since nicotine affects your body’s ability to heal, quitting beforehand is crucial to the success of your surgery. Because you will need to rest for several days after your appointment, it might also be helpful to organize some meals and assistance at your home beforehand.
Recovery and Results
Usually, the surgery itself doesn’t take long. If you’re having a mini-abdominoplasty, you might not even need to be anesthetized during the procedure. However, you should take several weeks off work, especially if your job requires physical activity. It will take you approximately one week to resume light housework and to walk on your own, so you should make sure someone is available to help you during the first seven days.
Fortunately, the results of this surgery are permanent, and you are unlikely to have to repeat it unless you lose or gain a significant amount of weight. To ensure the best outcome, you will need to maintain your healthy lifestyle and keep a close eye on your weight for the foreseeable future. An accountability partner, nutritionist, or personal trainer could assist you with this.
Abdominoplasty isn’t designed to be a weight loss program, and you will need to achieve your target weight before you are eligible for surgery. Once you have a healthy BMI, you might notice that your great new body shape is hidden by excess skin tissue and stubborn pockets of fat that can’t be addressed through traditional weight loss measures. During the tummy tuck, they are removed, so you can fully enjoy the results of your hard work.
To get started, you should contact your local clinic and book an initial appointment. The surgeon can then assess whether abdominoplasty is the best method for you and discuss what other interventions might be necessary to help you look and feel your best. Call or message us now at Rios Center for Plastic Surgery in Edinburg, TX and book a consultation with your local cosmetic surgeon, Dr. Rios.