The Tummy Tuck Demystified

Tummy Tuck

A so-called “tummy tuck” or Abdominoplasty  is a procedure used to remove excess abdominal fat and skin, and to help restore separated or weak muscles. The result is a smoother, firmer, flatter profile!

So who’s it for?

The typical tummy tuck candidate is a woman in her mid-thirties to mid-forties, who has lost tone and firmness as a result of weight gain or childbirth.  

Due to damaged or weakened stomach muscles, exercise can only work to a point , That’s where the tummy tuck comes in Some things to consider .

Pass on the procedure if you are pregnant or planning to become pregnant as long-term results cannot be guaranteed.

Don’t think about surgery if you’re seriously overweight.  You should be in generally good health and within a normal weight range for your body type.

Be sure you fully understand the procedure before you commit.  Discuss placement of scars, and any other concerns you might have with your doctor.

The nuts and bolts

The procedure lasts anywhere from 1-2 hours for a mini-tuck (partial minor repairs) to 3-5 hours for the full procedure.  

Anesthesia (local or general, depending on the work to be done and the length of the surgery) is administered and the surgeon usually makes two incisions – one near the navel and a larger horizontal cut near the pubic bone from hip to hip.

During the surgery, loose muscles will be tightened and sutured and excess fat and skin removed.  A drain may be inserted to prevent fluid build-up during healing.


Light activities can generally be resumed after about three days, and walking is encouraged to stimulate blood flow, promoting healing.  

You may need to walk in a stooped or bent over position due to a drain(s) that may have been inserted, but it’s still vital to walk as much as possible.  

Surface stitches are usually removed in 5-7 days; deeper sutures will either dissolve, or be removed in 2-3 weeks.  

In the meantime, you will likely be required to wear a compression device, a girdle-like device to hold everything in place during healing.

Expect to be sore and bruised 

Medication can help as can hot/cold compresses for a few days after the procedure.  Your scars may be red and raised, but will usually fade and flatten out within a year’s time.

Within several weeks, most women are healing nicely and a majority of women are back to work within 4-6 weeks.  In general, most women are quite pleased with the results!