An abdominoplasty consists of a W-shaped incision along the lower abdomen, well hidden within a bathing suit or even a relatively small bikini. The belly button is temporarily detached, and the skin from the lower abdomen is lifted up almost to the rib margin. While the skin is lifted, any separation or laxity of the abdominal muscles is tightened with a special suture. The skin of the abdomen is re-draped, the belly button is re-inserted and the extra skin removed. Small plastic drains are generally left in place for an average period of five days. The surgery is done under general anesthesia, and is most often done as an outpatient, but will require assistance at home for the first few post-operative days.
For patients whose abdominal laxity is entirely below the belly button, Dr. Kress can perform a mini tummy tuck. Men and women choose this form of the operation for a shorter scar and quicker recovery period. Other popular procedures that can be combined with abdominoplasty include thigh lift and liposuction.