To gain the best possible results from aesthetic surgery requires careful patient selection. Not all procedures are suitable for all patients, therefore it is impossible to offer anything other than very general advice before seeing a patient. It is certainly better to have no procedure than an inappropriate one. To undergo aesthetic surgery is a major decision requiring appropriate discussion and thought.
Cosmetic Procedures

The operation of abdominoplasty, or tummy tuck, is a procedure to tighten slack abdominal skin and improve the abdominal contour. Slack abdominal skin occurs most commonly after pregnancy and/or weight loss and in these circumstances is hardly ever amenable to correction by exercise, diet, etc. There are two principal types of abdominoplasty and the appropriateness of one or the other will depend on the condition of the individual patient.

Limited Abdominoplasy
If the amount of excessive skin is relatively minor, then a limited abdominoplasty can be carried out which leaves a transverse lower abdominal scar, similar in its central part to that produced by Caesarean section, but somewhat longer, and does not relocate the umbilicus (tummy button). This is usually carried out in association with liposuction.

Full Abdominoplasy
A 'full' abdominoplasty leaves a longer scar horizontal in its central part but extending towards the hips at the sides. It is designed to be beneath the area covered by a modest bikini. Because this procedure removes a considerable amount of excess abdominal skin, it is necessary to reposition the umbilicus and so a fine scar is left around this in its new site. Liposuction may also be combined with this operation.

Very frequently, particularly after pregnancy, there is some slackness of the abdominal musculature and this can also be tightened at surgery to gain a further improvement in contour. The operation itself takes approximately two hours to complete and usually requires a period of 24 hours hospitalisation and a recovery time of two weeks for most day-to-day activities. This is a procedure best carried out when no further pregnancies are planned.

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