NJ Tummy Tuck | New Jersey Abdominoplasty
Abdominoplasty, often called a “tummy tuck,” is the most popular procedure used to flatten and shape the abdomen after childbirth by removing excess fat and skin and by rejoining and tightening the muscles of the abdominal wall. Our doctors have been performing New Jersey tummy tucks with excellent cosmetic results for many years. Patients love the look of their new flat stomachs after surgery under our exceptional care.
Who is a good candidate for a tummy tuck?
The best candidates for a tummy tuck are active patients who are in good physical condition and who are bothered by hanging or loose skin in the abdomen and with abdominal muscles that have weakened or separated due to past pregnancies. Typically, candidates for NJ Abdominoplasty also complain of excess fat deposits in the hips, flanks and bra strap region which have not responded well to traditional diet and exercise.
Results from the NJ Tummy Tuck procedure will likely diminish if women continue to bear children, so we advise patients who plan to become pregnant to consider postponing this procedure until they are done having children. A question I am commonly asked is “how long do I have to wait after my last child before I can have surgery?”. Though there is no steadfast rule about the timing of an abdominal rejuvenation, it is my preference that my patients to wait at least 6 months following the birth of the final child before having this surgery.
We also encourage patients who intend to lose a lot of weight to wait before undergoing the procedure, since skin in the abdominal area typically loosens after substantial weight loss.
Customized Treatment for Optimal Cosmetic Results
We spend quite a lot of time during every pre-operative consultation to learn what each patient hopes to achieve from a Hudson County tummy tuck both for their body and for their self-confidence. By listening to what patients have to say and closely examining them rather than performing a one-size-fits-all procedure on every person, we provide our patients with a completely customized treatment that takes into account their specific goals. The best results are achieved by the combined efforts of our entire team and also the patient, that is through surgery followed by a change in lifestyle to include a nutritional overhaul (not simply a diet) and exercise. Usually at the 6 week postop mark, we encourage our patients to begin walking for 20-30 minutes each day at a casual pace, then increasing this to a brisk walk lasting the same time after the 2 month mark. We also encourage the involvement of a personal trainer to help patients combine the fat burning benefits of cardio with the strength training benefits of light weight lifting as demonstrated by an skilled personal trainer. In motivated patients who are willing to contribute to the effort of transforming their body, it is not uncommon for a patient to be a size 12 or 14 preoperatively and two years after surgery be a size 6 or 8, in the best health of her life and never having felt or looked better! This is quite gratifying for our team and for the patient.
The New Jersey Tummy Tuck Procedure
Tummy tucks take approximately two to five hours and are performed under general anesthesia. This procedure may be performed on an in-patient or outpatient basis, depending on the complexity of the surgery and also depending upon what other procedures might be performed simultaneously. In the vast majority of cases, our patients return home the same day.
The specific details of the procedure vary from patient to patient depending upon the amount of skin laxity and excess, the amount of unwanted fat on the front and sides as well as the outer aspect of the chest wall and breasts. Variations in design of the operation also depend upon the possible presence of hernias, stretch marks, tattoos and scars from previous abdominal operations such as C-sections. But regardless of the slight modifications that make this surgery an art rather than just a “procedure”, the essential features of a NJ tummy tuck involve contouring lipopsuction using the advanced Microaire Power Assisted device, which permits removal of small or large amounts of fat with minimal bruising or postoperative pain.
Following this, an incision is made just above the level of the pubic hair line and extending this line in the direction of the hip bones to permit removal of excess and hanging skin. The measurements and design for this skin excision are carefully made prior to the operation and these markings are always respected for the entirety of the operation. For this reason, it is exceedingly rare for a patient of mine to have “dogears” (excess triangles of skin and fat at the ends of the scar) following a Bergen County Abdominoplasty performed by his hands. Next, the muscles of the abdominal wall are tightened. Unlike the common practice, I never use a single running suture to bring these muscles together. I often operate on patients who present with “recurrent” abdominal laxity and bulging and invariably find a single running suture which has broken, resulting in complete loss of the abdominal tightening. Therefore, in every patient, I place between 10-15 individual sutures of a non-absorbable material to support the wall like an “internal corset” which will maintain a tight abdomen for the rest of the patient’s life. In addition, my Abdominoplasty patients typically require little or no pain medication. The reason for this is that I place my sutures through the tough “fascia” which lies directly above the muscle, but not through the muscle itself. Therefore, when a patient contracts her abdominal muscles, there will be no pain or spasm and she will find it quite easy to move around even 4 hours following surgery.
The next area of focus is the belly button. I believe that in order for an Abdominoplasty to be considered a success, the umbilicus must be youthful, naturally shaped and without a visible scar. I am very proud of the technique I developed 8 years ago for this purpose, and I invite you to take a look at multiple photos of belly buttons on this page in which there is a beautiful contour to the navel and no visible scar. Please not that these are all postop Belly Button photos! My staff and colleagues often joke that I pay more attention to a patient’s belly button than many other plastic surgeons pay to the entire operation! And the results support this statement. Following the inset of the belly button, the wounds are all closed with a fine suture beneath the skin which is removed in one week. And finally, a sterile dressing and an abdominal binder are placed.
Recovery after Tummy Tuck
No pain, and that is a promise! You can expect general discomfort for a few days that is easily managed with pain medication. Some patients do not require any pain medication at all. After surgery, a compression garment is worn, typically for two weeks. Also two small suction drains are placed beneath your skin to drain excess fluid from the surgical site. I ask my patients to refrain from returning to work for two weeks but most patients can resume normal activity and resume driving by the 10th day following surgery. You should limit strenuous activities such as returning to the gym for at least six weeks, and may need to take off from work for up to a month, depending upon the level of activity your work demands. During the early postop period, our team will give you specific instructions for your individual recovery and make sure you are following these instructions precisely. Doing so will help speed up your recovery and reduce the risk of any post-surgery complications.
A New Jersey tummy tuck will leave you with a flatter, more toned abdominal area that fits the natural contours of your body. It can improve your appearance and confidence by helping you look and feel younger and slimmer. The results of this procedure are visible right away and will continue to improve. With a balanced diet and regular exercise, results are long-lasting. Scars will fade with time, leaving your stomach sleeker and more defined than ever before.
A tummy tuck will leave a scar spanning the lower abdomen from hip to hip. We are very careful to make the incision low enough for even a bikini to conceal the scar. Contact us today with any questions or to schedule an NJ Abdominoplasty Consultation!
*Disclaimer: Surgical results are not guaranteed and vary greatly from patient to patient.