Liposuction, liposculpture and the various variations of abdominoplasty are some of the most used cosmetic surgeries which will make the abdomen fat-free and give it a flatter appearance.
The following are the main types of surgery and how one recovers from each:
Liposuction is performed to people who need the removal of fat located at the bottom of the navel, in the upper or sides of the abdomen but who do not need the removal of excess skin.
This type of aesthetic treatment is mainly to remove fat accumulations and improve the body contour. For the surgery to have the desired effects, the patient must be close to their ideal weight so that the result will be proportional.
- How is recovery: Liposuction surgery lasts about 2 hours and takes approximately 2 months for full recovery. It is necessary to go for lymphatic drainage sessions at least 3 times a week so as remove excess fluids. One should also wear braces so that there will be no marks left on the abdomen, or if they form points of fibrosis, which are the harder parts that can leave the belly with a wavy appearance.
In liposculpture, the plastic surgeon removes localized fat from the belly and strategic places so as to improve the body contour. Usually, the fat removed from the abdomen is replaced in places such as the thighs but the results will be seen well after about 45 days after the procedure.
This surgery needs postoperative care so that the expected results are achieved. For this reason it is necessary to brace all the treated areas and perform a lymphatic drainage so as to remove excess fluids from these regions.
- How is recovery: Recovery can be a little longer than other procedures because more than one area of the body is treated on the same day.
3. Complete abdominoplasty
Abdominoplasty is particularly performed to remove excess skin that remains after weight loss. This procedure requires more care than liposuction but can be done when the person is not yet within their ideal weight.
In this procedure, the plastic surgeon can sew the rectum abdominal muscle to make the belly more shaped, preventing the removal of this muscle which can result to abdominal diastasis, a condition that is very common after pregnancy.
- How is recovery: Excess skin and sagging of the belly can be totally eliminated using this procedure and results will be visible after 2 or 3 months from the time f operation. However, because the area worked on is larger, this procedure may take a longer period before recovery and the results may take 3 to 4 months to be noticed.
4. Modified abdominoplasty
Modified abdominoplasty is a type of aesthetic surgery where by fat and skin located mainly in the region below the navel is removed. It is ideal for people who have lost weight and have reached the ideal weight but have been left with a flabby belly similar to a ‘fanny pack’.
Before undergoing this surgery, one should quit smoking, and avoid taking hormonal remedies and anticoagulants before surgery.
- How is recovery: After surgery it is necessary to use brace and do lymphatic drainage in the first, and in the second month. Usually the final result can be seen after 1 month of the procedure.
5. Mini abdominoplasty
In the mini abdominoplasty, a cut is performed in the lower region of the navel, closer to the pubis, so as to remove the accumulation of fat in this site or to correct scars that were created by a caesarean section or any other aesthetic procedure.
Recovery after this procedure is faster as the region that is treated is smaller. However, it also requires some care, which includes use of braces ad performance of a lymphatic drainage sessions in the first month after surgery.
- How is recovery: The intention of the surgery is to correct a scar and therefore the results will be seen as soon as the second week. This is when the region will become less swollen and one will be able to see the contour of a new scar. The scar may be larger and going from one side of the body to the other, but it is usually thinner and should be imperceptible over time. After around 6 months to 1 year of correction, the person will only see a thin line at the site of the old scar.
6. Associated techniques
Aside from these techniques, the doctor may also use associated techniques in the same surgical procedure. He can choose to perform a liposuction in the top and lateral region of the abdomen then finish with a modified abdominoplasty.
- How is recovery: The surgery is not time consuming when the area to be worked on is smaller. When the doctor chooses to do a complete thisminoplasty with a liposculpture in the same procedure, the recovery time may take longer and the person may need help when getting dressed or when going to the bathroom or showering, for about a month.
The best way to know the ideal surgery is to consult with a plastic surgeon who will indicate the areas that can be corrected and the treatment options available.