Nearly 18 million cosmetic surgeries are performed in the United States each year. Some of the most common procedures include breast augmentation, liposuction, rhinoplasty, and blepharoplasty.

Abdominoplasty aka tummy tuck is popular as well. In 2020 alone, more than 97,000 patients underwent the surgery.

Are you thinking of getting it done? Want to learn more about the procedure? If so, you’re on the right page.

Keep reading for everything that you need to know about the topic!

What Is a Tummy Tuck?

A tummy tuck, also known as abdominoplasty, is a cosmetic procedure in which a surgeon removes excess skin and fat from the abdomen; it can also help tighten the connective tissues in the fascia. In some cases, it can even remove stretch marks.

For example, it’s not uncommon for people to get a tummy tuck after pregnancy. In fact, some plastic surgeons may be able to incorporate the tummy tuck scar into an existing c-section scar.

Some people may also choose to undergo abdominoplasty surgery after experiencing significant changes in weight.

What’s the Surgery Like?

The procedure is usually done under general anesthesia in a hospital or outpatient facility. After you’re sedated, the surgeon will make an incision at the bottom of your abdominal wall; that’ll allow them to remove the skin and fat in an elliptical or horizontal oval shape.

Once they’re done, they’ll close the incision with sutures. You’ll be left with a scar that falls horizontally across the abdomen from hip to hip, just a couple of inches below your belly button.

Generally speaking, the procedure takes around two to three hours.

The Abdominoplasty Recovery Process

The surgeon will cover the abdominal incision with a surgical dressing after the procedure. They may also place small tubes along the incision site to help drain excess fluid; these will have to be left in place for several days.

You’ll likely feel some pain, which you can control with medication. The doctor will also prescribe an antibiotic and depending on the situation, an anticoagulant.

For the first month and a half, you’ll want to be careful when moving around. For example, you’ll want to avoid bending quickly at the waist as it can reopen the wound.

Most patients will fully recover within six weeks. However, you’ll need to be approved by a doctor before you can return to normal activity levels.

How Much Does Abdominoplasty Cost?

The average cost of a tummy tuck is around $6,200. Keep in mind, however, that that doesn’t include the anesthesia, operating room, and other related expenses—you’ll have to pay extra for those.

The total cost will also depend on other factors such as the surgeon you’re seeing and your location.

And since it’s a cosmetic procedure, it’s not usually covered by medical insurance. Depending on the surgeon, however, there may be payment plans available.

Get a Tummy Tuck!

An abdominoplasty is a major surgery that can significantly improve the appearance of the abdomen. Recovery will take several weeks but for most people, it’s worth it. If it interests you, consult with a plastic surgeon.

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