Mini Tummy Tuck (Partial Abdominoplasty): Procedure, Recovery Time, and Cost
The mini tummy tuck, also known as the "scarless" tummy tuck, is increasingly
becoming the abdominoplasty procedure of choice. Since it is less
invasive, risky, and painful than a full tummy tuck, a partial tummy
tuck may the procedure you're looking for if you just want to get rid of little
extra skin. Read on to learn the difference between a partial and full
abdominoplasty, ideal candidates, how the procedure is performed, and
the cost of the operation.
The mini tummy tuck vs. full tummy tuck
mini tummy tuck, as the name suggests, is a less invasive and extensive
operation than a full tummy tuck. While a full abdominoplasty
procedure involves making incisions across the lower abdomen and around
the navel, partial abdominoplasty incisions tend to be much smaller and
the navel is left in tact. Simply put, full tummy tucks involve the
entire abdominal area while partial tummy tucks only involve the
abdominal area below the belly button. A full tummy tuck is a much
riskier procedure than a mini tummy tuck with a longer recovery time.
However, the results of a partial procedure will be less dramatic than
a full procedure.
Mini tummy tucks are generally recommended for patients that are within 10 percent of their ideal body weight. A surgeon may also recommend a partial procedure if your main concern is with excess skin below the navel. If you have bulging above the navel, extreme loose skin, and stretch marks, a full tummy tuck will most likely be the better procedure. To determine the best operation for you, consult with a board certified plastic surgeon that has plenty of experience with abdominoplasty surgeries.
Is mini tummy tuck surgery right for me?
only way you can truly decided whether or not a mini tummy tuck surgery
is the best option is by consulting with an experienced professional
plastic surgeon. In general, you may be an ideal candidate for a mini
abdominoplasty operation if you meet the following criteria:
- Has good overall health
- Within 10% of ideal body weight
- Body weight has been stable for >6 months
- Has a good diet and exercises regularly
- Has loose skin resistant to exercise
- Has good skin elasticity and tone
- Be of sound mind and emotionally stable
- Understands the risks of surgery, and
- Has realistic expectations of the final outcome.
Mini abdominoplasty procedure
Before the operation, your surgeon will consult with you to understand your expecations and will determine whether or not your goals are realistic. During this consultation, the doctor will evaluate your medical history, your overall health, the fat deposits in the abdominal section, and the skin tone.
At your initial consultation, your plastic surgeon will evaluate your health, determine the extent of fat deposits in your abdomen, and assess your skin tone. Be specific about what you would like done. If your surgeon fully understands your expectations, he'll be able to determine whether your goals are realistic.
Right before surgery, your surgeon will mark the areas of the abdomen that will be cut. The procedure may be performed under general or local anesthesia. During surgery, a small incision will be made below the bikini or boxer line to make the concealing of the scar under clothes easier. Next, excess fat and skin are removed and the abdominal muscle underneath is tightened. Lastly, the skin is re-draped and shaped over the abdomen. Even though the belly button is not directly manipulated during the operation, the stretching of the skin during reshaping will improve the appearance of the navel.
For enhanced results, a mini tummy tuck can be combined with liposuction, breast lift, and/or arm lift. Depending on how much work is being done, you can expect the the entire operation to last between 1-3 hours.
Immediately after surgery, patients are given a compression garment for support and healing. They should continue to wear this garment for 2-3 weeks after surgery.
Downtime and recovery
Recovery from a partial abdominoplasty is relatively short. Typically,
it takes a patient 7-14 days to fully recover. Patients usually become
normally active and return to work within two weeks after the
operation. Surgeons tend to recommend avoiding strenuous exercise for
30 days after surgery.
Side effects and complications
of advance medical technology, having a mini tummy tuck procedure is
relatively safe with very little side effects or complications.
Immediately after surgery, you may experience mild discomfort or pain
which is easily controlled with prescription oral medication. Some
possible complications include:
- Infection of the scar
- Skin necrosis (death), due to poor circulation in the abdominal skin
- Hematoma, excessive bleeding under the skin after surgery
- Seroma, fluid collection under the skin. This is prevented by placing a drain under the skin during surgery
- Scar tissue
complications are very rare for a healthy patient. You may have an
increased risk for complications if you smoke, are diabetic, have poor
circulation, have a family history of blood clots, take certain
medications, or have heart, lung or liver disease. Complications may
be further prevented by being honest with your doctor about your
medical history before undergoing surgery.
Mini Tummy Tuck Cost
Mini tummy tuck prices vary depending on your location, where the surgery is performed (i.e. hospital, private office, etc.), anesthesia, and what exactly is required from start to finish. Mini tummy tuck costs are up to 50% cheaper than full tummy tucks. You can expect to pay between $1800 up to $6000 depending on the various factors. The average cost is around $2500.
Health insurance usually does not cover abdominoplasty operation since it is considered as an elective surgery. However, if a doctor can provide proof that such a procedure is medically necessary for the health and well-being of the patient, the insurance may pay a portion to all of the cost of surgery. Health insurance may also cover a portion of the costs if there is a hernia present or excessive spreading of the anterior muscles. Contact your insurance provider regarding your specific policy, and make sure to get proper pre-authorization for surgery.
Mini Tummy Tuck Before and After
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