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Take These Steps to Prepare for Your Tummy Tuck

Take These Steps to Prepare for Your Tummy Tuck

A tummy tuck, also known as an abdominoplasty, is an operation on the abdomen that not only includes the removal of fat, but also the tightening of the muscles and skin. 

Ideal candidates for a tummy tuck include those who have been pregnant or those who have gone through major weight fluctuations. Pregnancy can permanently weaken some women’s abdominal muscles, making it impossible to tighten them up without surgical intervention.

However, if you carry the fat around your organs, which is known as visceral fat, you may not be a good candidate, as this type of fat can't be removed surgically. 

Dr. Richard M. Levin, our expert at Lancaster Plastic Surgery, has more than 30 years of experience in plastic surgery and cosmetic procedures. He performs tummy tucks on a regular basis at his practice in Lancaster, Pennsylvania. We asked him to share some of the steps patients need to take before getting a tummy tuck. 

Quit smoking cigarettes

Like any other surgical procedure, a tummy tuck presents some risks, including blood clots and infections. 

However, these risks are heightened by smoking cigarettes, as smoking constricts blood flow. Constricted blood flow slows down the healing process, opening up the possibility for various complications.

Talk to your doctor about the medications and supplements you are taking

Certain drugs and supplements may interfere with your recovery. For example, you may be recommended to quit taking medication containing aspirin at least 10 days before your surgery. Aspirin thins out the blood and increases the risk of bleeding. 

Even supplements can be problematic. For example, licorice and St. John's Wort can cause drug interactions. 

Schedule time off from work  

Recovery after a tummy tuck includes bed rest. On average, the recovery time for a tummy tuck is about eight weeks. After that period, you’ll be able to return to your everyday routines. 

Buy supplies for your recovery 

During your recovery, you may need compression garments, comfortable clothing, and over-the-counter painkillers to manage pain. Some patients also choose to order books and movies to keep themselves entertained while at home. 

Get an experienced plastic surgeon on your side 

If you’re looking to improve the appearance of your abdomen, contact us to schedule an appointment. Dr. Levin will examine your problem areas and explain what procedures could help you achieve your cosmetic goals. 

If you aren’t a good candidate for a tummy tuck, or if you simply want to slim down without undergoing a surgical procedure, Dr. Levin may recommend SculpSure®, a non-invasive body contouring procedure that can reduce fat in the abdomen by 24%. Schedule your consultation today. 

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