Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty) Surgery
SERVING SCOTTSDALE AND PHOENIX, ARIZONA
An Abdominoplasty (tummy tuck) is able to remove redundant fat and skin on the lower half of the abdominal wall. The procedure is also able to repair muscles that may have been damaged during pregnancy or significant weight gain. Tummy tuck plastic surgery is a frequent procedure in Dr. Shaun Parson’s practice.
Tummy Tuck Patient Photos
Click the thumbnails below to see the before and after photos in sequence. Please note that all photos are actual patients of Dr. Parson.
There are a number of circumstances where patients may find themselves candidates for an abdominoplasty surgery, but the most common is pregnancy. It’s typical to gain 25-30lbs with each pregnancy in a short period of time. That rapid expansion of the abdominal wall followed by rapid weight loss causes muscle laxity as well as redundancy and stretch marks on the lower abdomen. But pregnancy is not the only reason why a patient may require this type of surgery. Any similar situation where there has been sudden weight gain/loss will result in the same situation. Unfortunately, once the abdominal tissue has been expanded and stretched, no amount of sit-ups will ever fix the underlying problems. An abdominoplasty can also fix the typical “pooch” seen in the lower abdomen following pregnancy by repositioning the rectus abdominus muscles.
Dr. Parson will be able to determine whether you are a candidate for abdominoplasty during your consultation. Some patients may also be candidates for liposuction rather than abdominoplasty. This is a procedure where excess fat is removed from the area. Liposuction will not be able to reposition muscle or remove excess skin, but there are times when you will have an excellent result with liposuction alone. Dr. Parson will be able to give you a very honest opinion about which procedure is more suited to your body and your overall goals. Unlike liposuction, which involves small incisions placed in inconspicuous areas, tummy tuck plastic surgery requires lengthy incisions. Fortunately, these incisions can be located on the lower portion of the abdomen and can generally be hidden by swim suits and underwear.
The First Office Visit For Your Tummy Tuck
At the first visit, Dr. Parson obtains a pertinent medical and family history, with a particular emphasis on your abdominal issues. He will also define the general goals and expectations of the patient. A focused physical examination will be performed. The doctor’s examination will address issues such as abdominal wall laxity, the presence of abdominal hernias as well as general quality of the abdominal skin. If the patient’s abdomen is still in fairly good shape with little skin redundancy, Dr. Parson may recommend that the patient is a better candidate for a mini-abdominoplasty or liposuction alone. A mini-abdominoplasty is a variant of the standard abdominoplasty. It is a procedure that focuses more on repairing the separated abdominal wall muscles and less on removing excess abdominal skin. Dr. Parson will also pay special attention to any other abdominal scars and how they may affect the final result.
Photos are taken and uploaded unto our state-of-the-art TouchMD system, which provides an interactive educational experience for the patient and allows Dr. Parson to evaluate, draw and edit each patient’s photos individually. Patients are then able to log into their account in their privacy of their own home to view photos and review their consultation. Dr. Parson is one of the few Arizona surgeons to offer this state-of-the-art software system.
Patients are encouraged to bring significant others, family members or friends to the initial consultation.
The Tummy Tuck Pre-Operative Visit
It is important that plastic surgery patients take certain measures in the pre-operative period to decrease chances for potential complications. All of your medications will be reviewed prior to this period. Any medications that may cause surgical complications will be discontinued at least 2 weeks prior to operation. Any infections that arise prior to operation, however seemingly trivial, should be reported to our office. Even an otherwise innocent infection can result in a surgical wound infection, and must be treated prior to any abdominal surgical procedure.
Appropriate prescription medications will be written well prior to your procedure. This allows you to have your medication when you return home from the operation.
The balance of your surgical fee is due at this pre-operative visit.
The Day of Tummy Tuck Surgery
All patients are required to register and check-in two hours before the scheduled surgery time. Patients are not allowed to have anything to eat or drink from midnight on the night before surgery. Abdominoplasty surgery is performed with a general anesthetic. Our board-certified anesthesiologist feels that this method of anesthesia provides the greatest degree of patient satisfaction for this procedure. An abdominoplasty operation usually takes 2-3 hours to perform. Dr. Parson meets with the patient one last time to review details and make surgical markings. After being taken to the pre-operative area, a nurse will take a history, check vital signs and start an IV for fluids.
At the completion of surgery drains will be placed under the abdominal tissue to remove excess fluid. These drains can typically be removed within the first few days following your surgery. Dr. Parson will also place local pain medicine in the area via the On-Q Pain Buster Post-Op Pain Relief System. Patients generally remain post-operatively in the hospital for at least 1-2 nights for recovery.
After Abdomninoplasty Surgery
It is important that a capable adult be available for the first 24 hours help patients with transportation, meals, pain control, etc. following your return home. Pain should not be severe, and is usually well controlled by a combination of: narcotics, anti-inflammatories, and local pain medications. Local pain medication it delivered to the patient via an On-Q Pain Buster Post-Op Pain Relief System (which is an optional benefit provided by Dr. Parson). Dr. Parson recommends this system to his patients and finds that they require fewer narcotics than normal. Antibiotics are continued for 7 days after the procedure to lower the risk of infection. Activity should be restricted to no lifting of greater than 20lbs for the first 4 weeks. Dr. Parson will provide you with a compression garment and instruct you to stay in the garment 24/7 over the next 4 to 6 weeks. This helps with pain and swelling and provides support to your abdominal wall. A slight amount of bleeding at the incision sites is normal. One should be up and walking on the morning following surgery, and a light solid diet begun to the point of tolerance.
Dr. Parson should be contacted immediately for the following:
- Temperature over 101.5 degrees
- Chills or sweats
- Significantly different degree of swelling
- Increasing rather than decreasing pain
The first post-operative visit occurs 2-3 days after discharge from the hospital. Any dressings or bandages are removed and healing is assessed. After removal of the dressings, Dr. Shaun Parson will ask you to wear your compression garment for the next for 6 weeks. Cosmetic surgery patients are then allowed to shower and to wash their hair. Submerging in a bath, pool or hot top is not permitted, as this may cause the incisions to separate. Most patients resume a reasonably normal activity pattern and can return to non-physical jobs within 10-14 days after surgery.
Risks of Abdominoplasty Surgery
Complications of abdominoplasty surgery are uncommon. When complications do occur they can include: bleeding, infection, or a reaction to the anesthetic or sedative medications. You may experience temporary or even permanent numbness in areas. Differences that were present prior to surgery may not be able to be completely correctable following surgery. Permanent scarring will be present following the procedure. Dr. Parson will attempt to minimize these scars as much as possible, however, part of the final scar appearance will be dependent on how each patient individually heals. When poor healing is present there may be areas of scars that remain more prominent when compared to other areas. These types of scars may require further treatment.
Dr. Parson will discuss your particular scarring potential in more detail at the time of your consultation. The risk for poor overall wound healing will also be discussed at the pre-operative appointment. Previous abdominal scars, a smoking history and a history of diabetes are all factors that may adversely affect wound healing. Smokers will be asked to stop using cigarettes for at least 2-3 weeks prior to surgery.
Schedule a Tummy Tuck Consultation Today
Dr. Shaun Parson is a renowned tummy tuck surgeon who always places patient safety and comfort first. If you have been considering abdominoplasty and would like to learn more about the risks, benefits, and results, schedule a free, private consultation with Dr. Parson today. Call 480-282-8386.