Dr. Carol Wray performs tummy tucks on patients in the Roanoke Valley and surrounding areas including Salem, Blacksburg, Lynchburg and West Virginia, who want to remove excess skin and underlying fat in and around their lower abdomen.
What is a Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty)?
A tummy tuck, also known as abdominoplasty, is a surgical procedure that removes excess skin and underlying fat as well as tightens the muscles in the lower abdomen for a leaner, more defined abdomen. Many times, skin sags in this area following dramatic weight loss, age, a prior surgery or pregnancies. The extent of a tummy tuck can vary depending on how much excess skin there is and whether or not the muscles are separated. A minor tummy tuck may be done in the office, whereas a complete abdominoplasty is done in an ambulatory surgery center.
Benefits of a Tummy Tuck
There are many benefits to having a tummy tuck including a much leaner, flatter stomach. Additionally, patients may enjoy:
- More appealing physical appearance
- Tighter abdominal muscles
- Easier time exercising
- Better fitting clothing
Types of Tummy Tucks
- Complete abdominoplasty is necessary for more extreme patients who have had multiple pregnancies or have experienced a dramatic weight loss. It involves removing and tightening the skin from the ribcage to the bikini line. Usually, the underlying muscles are pulled together.
- A “mini” abdominoplasty is simply to tighten the skin in the lower abdomen via an incision at the bikini line where the excess skin is removed. It does not involve any skin tightening in the upper abdomen. Consequently, the recovery time is much shorter.
How is a Tummy Tuck Procedure Performed?
Depending on the extent of the procedure, the length of the incision below the bikini line will vary from several inches to hip-to-hip. A minor tummy tuck will tighten the lower abdominal skin and usually does not involve muscle tightening.
A complete abdominoplasty also has an incision around the belly button, so all the abdominal skin can be tightened and the excess skin removed. The muscles are frequently pulled together with a complete abdominoplasty.
At that point, the incision and the abdomen are wrapped with compression wraps to hold the bandages and prevent extreme swelling.
Preparing for a Tummy Tuck
To prepare for a tummy tuck, Dr. Wray discusses the entire procedure with each patient answering all questions during the consultation. You will have drains and need to know how to care for them. In addition, there are some necessary steps required to prepare for a tummy tuck including:
- Getting a medical evaluation and lab testing
- Stop smoking and use of all nicotine products beginning at least two weeks prior to surgery and two weeks after
- Avoiding any aspirin, ibuprofen, vitamins and herbal supplements at least one week prior to surgery
- Taking certain medications required for the surgery
- Adjusting current medications if necessary
- Arranging for transportation and someone to stay with you for 24 hours after surgery.
Tummy Tuck Recovery
Your incision will have a special type of tape over it that will help it heal. You will not need to have your sutures removed. Following the procedure, you will wear a compression garment for two to four weeks. We recommend one to two weeks away from work for tummy tuck recovery and avoiding any strenuous activity or lifting for six to eight weeks.
Tummy Tuck Results
Initially, the results from a tummy tuck are hard to see due to swelling and the inability to stand up straight. Over a few weeks following the procedure, the results start to become more noticeable with full results of a flatter, more toned abdomen visible within a few weeks. There may be some scarring, but the line is below the bikini line and fades over time.
How much does a Tummy Tuck Cost?
A tummy tuck varies in cost from patient to patient depending on the areas to be treated and the extent of the procedure. During your initial consultation with Dr. Wray, we will discuss the procedures to achieve your goals, as well as the cost involved. We accept cash and major credit cards including VISA®, MasterCard® and Discover® as well as offer financing options through CareCredit®. It is important to note full payment is required prior to cosmetic procedures.
Is a Tummy Tuck Procedure Right for Me?
It is important to note that a tummy tuck is not an alternative to losing weight. During your consultation, Dr. Wray will discuss whether a tummy tuck is the best route for your situation.
Consider a tummy tuck:
- If you have excess skin on your abdomen that does not improve with diet or exercise.
- If the shape of your abdomen changed from pregnancy or massive weight loss.
- If you feel your protruding abdomen is unattractive.
“Dr. Wray is the best and I always recommend her to my friends. She is professional and approachable.” Submitted 2/22/2013
Why Choose Dr. Wray?
Dr. Wray is well versed in the latest technological advances, ensuring that patients get the quality and personalized care they deserve.
- Over 25 years of experience performing plastic surgery and cosmetic procedures
- The only female board-certified plastic surgeon in the Roanoke Valley area
- Thoroughly answers questions and designs personalized treatment plans
- Experienced and caring staff makes patients feel welcome and comfortable
What Should I Expect from My Consultation?
Following an evaluation of your medical history and physical exam, Dr. Wray will address your concerns and goals, as well as answer all your questions. Your satisfaction is a top priority and her goal is to make sure you are educated about options and possible procedures.
Dr.Carol Wray is board certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery and offers aesthetic plastic surgery and other in-office nonsurgical cosmetic procedures for the residents in the Roanoke Valley and surrounding areas including Salem, Blacksburg, Lynchburg and West Virginia. Please contact us to schedule your consultation.