A tummy tuck or abdominoplasty is a very rewarding and fulfilling operative cosmetic procedure. A sleek slim body especially along the abdominal area is a very desirable anatomic condition. With pregnancy and weight gain and the passage of time fat accumulates along the abdominal wall.
It requires vigilance over time with a dedication to limiting excessive caloric intake and the commitment to vigorous physical activity in adulthood to maintain our optimal physique. Some patients present with cascading folds of skin and fat over the abdominal wall.
Post-bariatric patients have achieved a level of stable body weight and significant weight loss that inspires them to consider surgical removal of this unwanted skin and fat of the abdominal wall. Surgical removal of this unwanted excess of skin and fat is more appropriately referred to as abdominal wall reconstruction. The term tummy tuck is not fully descriptive of what occurs when these cascading folds of skin and fat are surgically removed.
Pregnancy and hormonal changes after the tummy tuck can affect the result. Most often however a woman who presents for a tummy tuck has decided further pregnancies are either not wanted or possible. This is the optimal situation for female abdominoplasty. Skin elasticity plays a big role in the result as well.
Patients who have lost profound weight for example greater than 100 pounds may present with significant loss in skin elasticity and therefore may experience some degree of recurrent laxity following the tunny tuck. This however is rare.
We counsel our patients preoperatively to achieve their ideal weight – or their ideal desired weight. And, maintain this for at least six months. This will demonstrate hopefully stability concerning body weight and BMI. This six-month stability is a good predictor of stability of body weight after the tummy tuck.
The answer then is yes, your belly may come back after a tummy tuck. However, it will require a very focused and deliberate consumption of excess calories over a long period of time. This rarely happens especially in patients who have adjusted and adopted a new lifestyle preoperatively.
Streamlining and reducing the abdominal area surgically with a tummy tuck in the right patient is a very rewarding and fulfilling procedure further enhancing lifestyle and quality of life and with it a great degree of happiness.