As we get older, our bodies can change significantly. Unfortunately, for many of us, this means struggling with stubborn abdominal fat. Especially after pregnancy or a dramatic weight loss, the muscles and skin around the stomach can begin to sag, creating an unsightly pooch or ‘muffin top’. No amount of diet or exercise can completely regain that youthful stomach.
At Body by Ravi Plastic Surgery and Aesthetics, Dr. Ravi Somayazula’s tummy tuck procedure can help both women and men achieve a smooth, taut abdomen and youthful figure. A life-changing procedure, an abdominoplasty can give patients the chance to once again wear their favorite clothing and swimsuits, feeling confident in their body. The ultimate reward from a tummy tuck is the increased self-esteem when the body is once again back to its glorious pre-pregnancy shape. A tummy tuck (also known as an abdominoplasty) is a highly rewarding procedure which removed excess skin and fat while tightening the abdominal muscles. Women not only drop several dress sizes but also have decreased unsightly bulging in clothes and swimwear.
How can I benefit from a Tummy Tuck?
- Flattening and tightening the abdomen
- Smoothing a ‘muffin top’ or stomach pooch
- Removing excess sagging, loose abdominal skin
- Creating a contoured abdomen with a narrower waist
- Tightening of the abdominal wall
- Decreasing stretch marks
- Eliminating a C-section scar
- Improved self-confidence
- A Full Tummy Tuck involves an incision along the lower abdomen, immediately above the pubic area. Repairing and tightening the abdominal muscles creates a tighter abdominal wall. Excess skin is removed. The remaining skin and tissue is pulled taut, ensuring a flatter, smoother abdomen. A new belly button is created and appropriately positioned.
- The Mini Tummy Tuck involves a shorter, less noticeable incision, also located above the pubic area; running midway across the pelvic area. During this technique, the belly button is rarely repositioned.
- In most cases, a Lipoabdominoplasty is performed which simply means the addition of liposuction to provide further contouring of the abdominal silhouette.
- Four weeks before surgery, stop smoking and using nicotine products (including e-cigarettes). Smoking can cause decreased circulation, delaying healing and increasing the chance for serious complications. Commit to not smoking for at least four weeks after surgery.
- A week before surgery, stop the use of aspirin and other non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, such as Ibuprofen, as these can cause unexpected bleeding.
- A week before surgery, discontinue taking any herbs or supplements, as they can interfere with the healing process.
- To ensure safe and dependable results, it is imperative that you closely follow all of Dr. Ravi’s pre/post op instructions carefully. Contact our office if questions arise.
- What is a Tummy Tuck? The tummy tuck, also known as an abdominoplasty, is a surgical procedure designed to eliminate excess fat and loose skin along the abdomen. Dr. Ravi’s tummy tuck can be an excellent choice to reduce a post-pregnancy pooch, as well as smooth the stomach after a major weight loss. An abdominoplasty also includes tightening of the abdominal muscles that is often necessary after pregnancy or weight gain.
- What is the difference between a full tummy tuck and a mini-tummy tuck? Dr. Ravi’s full tummy tuck involves removal of excess skin and fat along with muscle repair which results in an incision running from hip to hip, crossing right above the pubic bone. This procedure will also reshape and reposition the belly button. Dr. Ravi also offers the mini-tummy tuck, which typically requires removal of a smaller amount of excess skin and fat therefore leaving a shorter incision. This technique also eliminates fat and tightens the abdominal muscles, without necessarily repositioning the belly button.
- When can I return to work after my tummy tuck procedure? Patients can expect their tummy tuck recovery to take about two weeks, with moderate discomfort the first several post-operative days. Depending on the individual, most patients are feeling well enough to return to work in ten to fourteen days. Strenuous activities and exercise, however, will need to be postponed for at least three months.
- How long do I need to wear a compression or surgical garment, following my tummy tuck at Body by Ravi Plastic and Aesthetic Surgery? Wearing the compression garment as instructed is extremely important for maximizing results and minimizing complications. The compression garment reduces swelling and prevents a seroma, or fluid pocket, from accumulating. The garments should be worn for a minimum of eight weeks, removed only for showering. It is also important to wear the compression garments recommended from our office, as they work better than other surgical garments on the market.
- How long are drains in place, following a tummy tuck? Dr. Ravi will place one to two small drains after the abdominoplasty procedure. These eliminate the buildup of naturally occurring fluids, reducing post-op swelling. Depending on the individual patient, drains are normally removed one to three weeks after surgery based on the amount of fluid loss. Removal of the drains is very simple and pain-free. It is done during a normally scheduled in-office follow up with Dr. Ravi.
- Can I combine my tummy tuck with an additional technique, such as the Brazilian Butt Lift? For optimal body contouring results, an abdominoplasty can be combined with a variety of additional procedures, including liposuction or the Brazilian Butt Lift. During the consultation, Dr. Ravi will review the pros and cons of combining two or more surgical procedures, determining the best procedure(s) for your needs. Many women will decide to have a Mommy Makeover procedure which typically is a tummy tuck along with a breast procedure, such as a Breast Augmentation, Breast Lift or Breast Reduction.
These before & after photos are from a specific patient. Results may vary. Schedule a personalized consultation with our doctor to learn more.
Why choose Body by Ravi Plastic Surgery and Aesthetics for a tummy tuck?
Based in Houston, Dr. Ravi Somayazula is a board-certified, Harvard-trained plastic surgeon, specializing in body contouring procedures. Sought by patients from across the United States and around the world, Dr. Ravi is known for aligning and tightening the separated abdominal muscles during his tummy tuck, creating a stronger abdominal wall and internal corset for long-term improvements. The result is a firmer, flatter, natural-looking midsection with a beautiful, youthful contour.
“I believe the required delicacy and surgical skill to achieve the best tummy tuck results cannot be overstated. It is much more involved than merely excising skin and fat; it ultimately requires an artistic approach. It is a sculptural endeavor that requires a combination of understanding anatomy and having an aesthetic vision to achieve the most gorgeous results. There can be truly dramatic improvements in physical well-being, self-assurance, and confidence.”
-Dr. Ravi Somayazula
Using a patient-centered approach, Dr. Ravi creates customized treatment plans that are meticulously based on each patient’s medical background, existing circumstances, lifestyle, and unique goals. Known for his kind, professional bedside manner, Dr. Ravi encourages his patients to make a well-informed decision regarding their elective procedure, without any pressure to commit to surgery.
Full Tummy Tuck vs the Mini Tummy Tuck:
An Ideal Tummy Tuck Candidate
Dr. Ravi’s Tummy Tuck procedure is tailored to the individual, providing excellent results for almost anyone struggling with a pooch or sagging abdominal skin. An ideal candidate will be in overall good health, within 15 pounds of their ideal weight. They should understand the abdominoplasty procedure, not smoke or use other tobacco products, and have realistic surgical expectations. Those who smoke, plan to get pregnant, or are looking to lose a large amount of weight may be encouraged to postpone their abdominoplasty procedure.
The Abdominoplasty Consultation
Patients should set aside an hour and a half for their tummy tuck consultation with Dr. Ravi, as this appointment is vital for a successful procedure. During this time, Dr. Ravi will review your medical history and discuss the aesthetic goals. He will also perform a thorough physical examination, assessing the condition of your skin and abdominal muscles. After explaining his abdominoplasty techniques, and showing before/after photographs of his recent tummy tuck patients, Dr. Ravi will answer any remaining questions. A patient coordinator will also be on hand to explain payment options. If a tummy tuck is the best surgical option, Dr. Ravi will create a personalized treatment plan, designed to achieve the desired results. In some instances, based on your aesthetic goals, Dr. Ravi may also recommend it be combined with a Breast Augmentation , Breast Lift or Breast Reduction as part of a Mommy Makeover. In most cases, Liposuction is recommended of the upper abdomen, waist and flanks as a tummy tuck alone may not get rid of the excess fat in those locations. Dr. Ravi’s will plan a comprehensive strategy to get the best results for an overall shapelier mid-section. In some instances, it may be necessary to also perform liposuction of the back and bra rolls or even fat transfer to the buttock butt.
Patients will have a pre-op appointment roughly two weeks before their tummy tuck. At this time, we will again review the procedure and recovery instructions, providing a detailed surgical information packet. Prescriptions for an antibiotic, as well as pain and nausea medications, will be written. A series of ‘Before’ photographs are taken at this time, and all consent forms will be signed.
The Tummy Tuck Procedure
Dr. Ravi performs his tummy tuck procedure at a local, accredited surgical facility, under general anesthesia with a board-certified anesthesiologist. Depending on the extent of correction and technique, the surgery will take from two to three hours. The abdominoplasty is normally performed on an outpatient basis, however in some instances Dr. Ravi may recommend an overnight stay for additional comfort. The exact steps of your tummy tuck will vary based on your unique case and consultation.
Dr. Ravi will begin by making a lower transverse incision, horizontally across the pubic line, from hip to hip. From here, he will excise unwanted fatty tissue and stretched skin. Dr. Ravi will tighten the remaining abdominal muscles, pulling the remaining tissues taut. This produces a stronger, slimmer core. Liposuction can be used to further eliminate fat, as well. Dr. Ravi can reposition and reshape the belly button, as needed. Finally, sutures will be placed along the incisions for proper healing. Dr. Ravi will place a surgical garment, reducing swelling and promoting the healing process.
Getting Back to Normal After Your Tummy Tuck
Recovery from a Tummy Tuck will take from one to two weeks. Most patients are feeling good enough to return to work in ten to fourteen days. However, recovery time will vary according to the individual. While many patients are back to light activities within two weeks, others may take longer to resume their normal routine. Strenuous activities will need to be postponed for six weeks.
Initially, patients can expect mild to moderate discomfort, swelling, and bruising. Dr. Ravi will place dressings over the incisions for proper healing, as well as a compression garment to reduce swelling. Drain tubes are often put in place to reduce the accumulation of fluid. During the consultation and each post-op visit, Dr. Ravi will provide specific drain care instructions. These tubes are normally removed in one to three weeks, during a follow-up appointment.
A responsible adult should be on hand during the first 24 hours after surgery. Even though you will be tender, Dr. Ravi will encourage patients to get up and walk the day of surgery and continue doing so afterwards. To keep a close eye on your recovery, Dr. Ravi will have two in-office follow-ups scheduled within the first two weeks of surgery. These appointments will continue at regular intervals over the next year, ensuring long-term healing is on point. Additionally, Dr. Ravi and his staff are always available, should any questions or problems arise.
The overall final appearance of an abdominoplasty will not be apparent until all the swelling dissipates. Most redness and swelling will fade over the first several weeks, although residual swelling may take six months or longer. Over the weeks following a tummy tuck, the skin will start to look tighter, smoother, and more contoured. Patients can ultimately expect their stomach to become flatter and tauter. Dr. Ravi will recommend certain medications and treatments to help you attain your best possible results.
“Dr. Ravi is the BEST!! His bedside manner is is what you seek when looking into elective surgery or anything for that matter. He's honest about procedures and will take all the time you need to answer any of your questions. His staff is pleasant and always has smiles on their faces. He totally put me at ease about my Tummy Tuck and Lipo, best decision ever in deciding to go with Dr. Ravi. I'm looking forward to round two with him soon.”
-J. H., Houston, TX
Complications from Dr. Ravi’s tummy tuck are rare, however as it is major surgery, there is always a risk involved. Issues that may arise include unexpected swelling, bleeding, scarring, asymmetry, and nerve damage. During the consultation appointment, Dr. Ravi will discuss the potential for complications.
Find Out More About the Tummy Tuck from Body by Ravi Plastic Surgery and Aesthetics
Dr. Ravi is one of Houston’s most prominent plastic surgeons, with decades of experience in the abdominoplasty and body contouring techniques. He is dedicated to a patient-centered style of care, tailoring each procedure to the unique needs of the individual. To find out if this surgical procedure is right for you, schedule a consultation at Body by Ravi Plastic Surgery and Aesthetics. Reach out to our Houston-area office by calling 281-241-1061 or fill out our online Contact Us form. Our patient coordinator will be happy to answer all your questions and assist in scheduling a confidential consultation with Dr. Ravi.
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