Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty)

Sometimes Diet And Exercise Won’t Give You The Flatter Belly And Slimmer Waist You Want. No Worries, We Can.

When patients tell us they are considering a tummy tuck, we hear statements like:

  • “I work out regularly, but how many crunches does it take? My stomach just won’t budge.”
  • “After having my kids, I got my weight back down, but my belly still has a bulge.”
  • “I don’t drink beer, but it looks like I have a beer belly!”
  • ”What can we do about this skin hanging over my bikini area?”

Do any of the above quotes sound like you? Don’t worry, we can help.

Excess skin and fat in the mid-section of the body can be particularly stubborn. A tummy tuck (abdominoplasty) is an excellent way to remove this excess fat and skin from the middle and lower abdomen (or tummy) region when diet and exercise yield insufficient results. A tummy tuck contours the abdominal area, making the stomach flatter and the waist slimmer. The muscles can be tightened and brought closer to the middle of your belly making them more efficient and flatter while reversing some separation that may have been caused by pregnancy or previous weight gain. If necessary, love handles can be addressed by targeted liposuction.

Tummy Tuck Videos

There are several abdominoplasty techniques and Drs. Coan and Zenn have years of experience performing successful tummy tucks for both male and female patients. Your body and lifestyle are unique, so your surgical plan must be equally unique. Abdominoplasty is a very satisfying surgery that can help you fit into your clothing better while making you feel more youthful and self-confident.

Who is a Good Candidate for a Tummy Tuck?

Men and women who are within 10-15 pounds of their ideal weight but have excess fat and/or lax skin in the midsection of the body are often good candidates for a tummy tuck. The surgery is not a weight loss procedure.

Women who plan to become pregnant in the future may choose to wait to have a tummy tuck until after they have finished child bearing. While there is no risk to you or your pregnancy should you become pregnant unexpectedly, the results may become partially reversed.

What are the Different Types of Tummy Tucks?

Full abdominoplasty - or Classic Abdominoplasty - addresses loose skin, excess fat, and lax muscles. It involves the removal of excess skin from the abdomen both below and above the belly button and tightening the abdominal muscles. Liposuction is used to remove excess fat from the abdomen and the waist. The incision should be low in the pubic area and extends towards the hips.

Mini-abdominoplasty - usually only addresses very limited excess skin and a bulge primarily secondary to muscle laxity. Using only a very short incision, similar to a C-section, the muscles are tightened and the limited extra skin below the belly button is removed. No scar is created around the belly button and it typically “floats down” less than an inch.

Lipo-abdominoplasty is a mini-abdominoplasty designed for people with more fat than skin to remove below the belly button, combining liposuction to the flanks, back and abdomen, with minimal incisions. After the liposuction is performed, the muscles are tightened, and a small amount of excess skin is removed as in the mini-abdominoplasty.

Extended abdominoplasty - also addresses problems related to skin, fat, and muscle. The incision extends further around to address excess skin removal to the sides and back. If necessary, this can go all the way around – 360 degrees and is often called a lower body lift. Liposuction and muscle tightening may also be performed.

Lower body lift addresses skin, fat, and muscle at 360 degrees, while also includes a buttock lift. This procedure is usually performed on patients who have a considerable amount of lax skin after massive weight loss. Read more about Body Contouring After Massive Weight Loss.

How is a Tummy Tuck Performed?

Most tummy tucks are performed using deep IV sedation with a local anesthetic and close monitoring by an anesthesia professional. In some cases, when a larger procedure is required or your health history dictates, you may require general anesthesia. In either case, you are monitored thoroughly at the highest level of safety.

Liposuction is used as part of the tummy tuck to remove excess fat from the abdomen, waist, and surrounding areas to accentuate the results. This is done using small cannulas through tiny incisions to permanently remove fat cells.

Excess skin is always removed, and the muscles can be tightened in order to contour the area, making you feel and look tighter and slimmer.

The amount of time required for your surgery is based on the type of tummy tuck you will have, but most of these surgeries take two to three hours.

What Can You Expect During Recovery from a Tummy Tuck?

In most cases, you can return to work and non-strenuous activities in one to two weeks after your surgery. It is recommended that you wear a support garment for about a month and strenuous activities and heavy lifting be limited during this time to allow muscles to heal.

You will feel sore for several days so we will provide prescription pain medication, as well as an antibiotic, for the first few days. Most patients use Motrin or other over-the-counter pain medicine within a week or two. Bruising is minimal in most cases. Swelling will take several weeks to fully resolve, and it might be difficult to walk completely upright for a few days.


Care Plastic Surgery in Durham, NC is the only office offering 3D imaging technology by Crisalix. Discover how you can look after a cosmetic procedure or plastic surgery. 

If you are interested in learning more about tummy tuck procedures, please call CARE Plastic Surgery at (919)-484-4884 to speak with one of our Patient Care Coordinators. They will be happy to give you more information and assist you in setting up a consultation with one of our highly trained surgeons.

Care Plastic Surgery 9:35 pm