Abdominoplasty in La Jolla & San Diego
Everybody wants a flat, toned abdomen, yet the presence of excess fat or sagging skin makes this hard to achieve. Even with diet and exercise you just can’t seem to firm up that area. A tummy tuck could be the answer with Dr. Kearney serving La Jolla and San Diego, CA.
What Is A Tummy Tuck?
A tummy tuck, also known as an abdominoplasty, is a plastic surgery procedure where excess skin and fat in the abdomen are removed. In some cases, separated or weakened abdominal muscles are also restored to improve the abdominal profile.
What Are The Benefits Of A Tummy Tuck?
What’s the benefit of having a firm lower abdomen instead of that annoying pooch that has been with you ever since your child was born? A tummy tuck specifically targets the lower abdomen, seeking to remove excess skin and tighten underlying muscles if they have become separated in the center.
These procedures with Dr. Kearney are very rewarding for our patients because the sagging skin and unresponsive muscles in the abdomen are virtually impossible to reverse with dietary changes and exercise. All the crunches you can do usually won’t have much of an effect. This is because once this skin is stretched by the localized weight gain of pregnancy or from prolonged weight gain, it simply cannot tighten back down. If you want a metaphor, think of a rubber band that has been stretched over a large object for a period of a few months. Take it off and it is now stretched permanently, never to return to its former smaller, tighter form. That’s what happens with stretched abdominal skin. Muscles separate from the localized weight and they cannot return to the center except with surgery.
The bottom line here is that you’ll love your tighter tummy and the thinner contour of your waist that this procedure provides. And these are permanent changes.
Who Is A Candidate For Abdominoplasty?
A good candidate for abdominoplasty is someone who has excess or sagging abdominal skin. They’ve tried diet and exercise to no avail. Those who feel their abdomen is out of proportion with the rest of the body could also good candidates. The potential patient also needs to be in good overall health and have realistic goals and expectations regarding the procedure.
I’m considering having more children. Can I still have a tummy tuck?
During his tummy tuck consultations, Dr. Kearney stresses that the potential patient be sure she does not want to have any more children after this surgery. Why? The localized gain and loss of weight will stretch the skin and create the same sagging that merited the surgery in the first place. You’ll lose your results. Plus, it’s likely you will stretch and distort the incision scars.
Bottom line? If you think there’s even a chance that you may want to have another child, now is not the time for a tummy tuck.
What Can I Expect During The Procedure?
- Tummy tucks are done as an outpatient procedure with the patient under general anesthesia.
- Dr. Kearney makes a horizontal incision above the pubic area. The length of the incision depends upon the amount of skin that needs to be removed and the length of scarring you are willing to accept.
- Another incision around the belly button is usually needed to tighten the skin above it.
- Mini tummy tucks have one incision and it is shorter, but a mini tuck only tightens the lower abdominal skin wall.
- Standard tummy tucks tighten the entire abdominal wall and lift the frontal high skin. The longest incisions come from extended tummy tucks where the abdomen and sides are tightened; the incision can extend to the sides and your lower back.
Dr. Kearney will discuss your options with you and recommend which procedure is right for you. He will also do his best to keep incisions and the resulting scars in inconspicuous places like below your bikini line.
What Are The Results Of Abdominoplasty?
The goal in these procedures is to trim away excess sagging skin on the lower stomach. Dr. Kearney also brings separated stomach muscles back to the center and attaches them in their original location, prior to being separated by the localized weight gain and increase in stomach size that comes with pregnancy. Your results will give you the firmer, tighter abdomen you had before pregnancy. In these procedures, Dr. Kearney also usually includes some amount of liposuction to remove unwanted fat pockets.
If you maintain a healthy weight and incorporate exercise into your life, you will enjoy the results from this procedure for the rest of your life. Sure there will be some new sagging as you age — all your tissues become somewhat more lax with the passage of time — but this will start from a much tighter, firmer origination point.
What can I Expect After A Tummy Tuck?
Dr. Kearney’s tummy tuck patients are usually sent home on the same day of their surgery. Patients are provided with a pain pump (a device that continuously delivers pain medication to help alleviate discomfort) to take home with them. Drains will also be present to let any blood or other fluids drain out of the incision area; they usually come out within seven to 10 days. Most patients can return to work in 10 to 14 days.
How Long Will The Results Of My Tummy Tuck Last?
The changes made by Dr. Kearney are permanent. The excess skin he trims away is gone for good. So is the fat he removes. If your stomach muscles had become separated, he brings them back to the center of your stomach and permanently anchors them in place.
Scarring after Abdominoplasty
Full tummy tucks create the longest incision in all of cosmetic surgery. There is no way around this. The incision for these procedures runs from hipbone to hipbone, descending down below the bikini line so that the scar can be hidden beneath panties or a bikini bottom. If you have an extended tummy tuck, the incision can wrap around the flanks. The scar will fade with time, but there will be a long scar.
Will A Tummy Tuck Remove My Stretch Marks?
Stretch marks occur due to permanent changes in the skin caused by rapid weight gain, such as during pregnancy. If your stretch marks are on areas of excess skin that Dr. Kearney removes, those stretch marks will be removed. But stretch marks that occur elsewhere will not be affected or improved by this procedure.
Is Tummy Tuck Surgery Safe? What Are The Risks?
This is major surgery, so all of the same risks that come with any surgery apply here: reaction to anesthesia, excessive bleeding, poor incision healing, infection, and the like. But these are rare.
The main risk involved with tummy tuck surgery is that the long incision will heal unevenly. That’s where the expertise of your surgeon comes into play. Dr. Kearney is a board-certified plastic surgeon with extensive experience. His experience and expertise ensures your results will be satisfying.
Cost of Tummy Tuck Surgery
A flatter abdomen comes at a reasonable price. An abdominoplasty with Dr. Kearney costs around $6,400 to $13,750 depending on the type of tummy tuck. To determine the exact price for your specific situation, please contact us for a complimentary consultation.
Financing is also available through CareCredit. They offer our patients 6, 12 and 18 months no interest plans as well as plans with terms of up to 60 months at 14.9%. Patients can finance up to $25,000. A “credit card” will be issued to you, which you can swipe in our office or other participating offices. CareCredit is for everyone. If your credit has taken a hit, you may opt for a co-signer. For more information on financing for your abdominoplasty or to apply, call 1-800-365-8295 or visit www.carecredit.com.
San Diego tummy tuck surgeon, Dr. Kearney, discusses his abdominoplasty procedures at his La Jolla plastic surgery practice. Call (800) 671-1951 or fill out a Contact Form here to schedule a consultation!