Abdominoplasty - Tummy Tuck Surgery
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So, today I'm going to be talking about abdominoplasty or tummy tuck surgery. This is often a little bit difficult for some people to understand because there are some technical phrases which I'm going to hopefully try and explain to you today. So, first thing, who will benefit from the tummy tuck procedure? Well, normally, some people who've lost a lot of weight and really their skin doesn't look, hasn't be curled to help the abdominal chromosomes. But more often is, some people who have had children and pregnancy often does stretch the abdominal skin and anyone who has had a child will notice some laxity in the abdominal skin, particularly if you had a cesarean. A cesarean tends to tether the scalp to the underlying abdominal wall and tend to get small over that scarring. Things to consider when you're considering abdominoplasty, first of all, the muscles on your tummy. So normally after pregnancy, the muscles, the vertical muscles on your tummy will split a little bit. Often, in your recovery period following pregnancy, they tend to go back to an extent, they don't always go back fully. How do you test whether you've got this condition which is known as divarication. Divarication means splitting of the rectus muscles. So the technical term is divarication of the recti. The way to do it is lie flat with your knee straight, raise your ankles off the bed and feel, this temp to your muscles and feel this inner gap between your muscles. The gap maybe in the upper part, around the tummy muscle or in the lower part. If there is a gap, you will either feel a bulge between the muscle or a gap between the muscles. If you have gotten this, normally the muscles will be repaired and put together in the same time of the operation. Actually, many women who have had children, have had significant divarication, and because of the altered mechanics of the abdominal musculature, you get a significant amount of back pain. This is caused by the muscles being on the front and more pulling in adequately. So often repair of the back pain does improve significantly for some people. So that's the first thing in the muscles. You can improve some with the exercise, but if they are very split, they will go back too. Second thing is, the amount of skin in excess. Now if there is only very little bit of excess, often a mini tummy tuck will be suitable for you and if there is more skin excess, a full tummy tuck will be suitable. What's the difference? Well, in a mini tummy tuck, skin is removed normally from the lower part of the tummy below the umbilicus. So in the area of the skin, normally 8 centimeters is left between the tummy button and the suprapubic area, pubic hair. In a mini tummy tuck, you don't need an incision around the tummy button, basically the lower part of the abdominal skin is removed, the umbilicus is divided from inside and brought down slightly, but there is no scar around the tummy. That's suitable for people with a major amount of skin excess in the lower part of the tummy. If you've got more skin excess, you need to be thinking along the lines of the full tummy tuck. In the full tummy tuck, all the skin between the pubic hair, top part of the pubic hair and the tummy button is removed. The other part of the skin is free from inside. Often the muscles are repaired. Skin is brought down almost like blind, out suited, and the belly button, the umbilicus, which is kept on a stalk, tummy skin comes down, like a sort of a window or blind and a new hole is created for the tummy button. So, a question I'm often asked is will the tummy button be in the same place? Yes, it will be in the same place, but the skin around the tummy button is drawn down to the tummy button and a new hole is created. We're talking in a future episode about different shapes of tummy button, surgeons are very preoccupied with this, I only favor a vertical oval tummy button. So the questions you need to think about, really, if you're considering a tummy tuck or a
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