Every plastic surgery journey begins with a one-on-one consultation. During this time, tummy tuck patients at my Sacramento and Roseville practices can ask any questions about the procedure. Unfortunately, some patients are unsure of what to say during this important discussion. They sometimes feel nervous and don’t know what to expect.
By having a better idea of what to discuss at your consultation, you and your doctor can have an informative, productive conversation. Here are a few good questions to consider bringing up during your one-on-one chat.
Do I need a tummy tuck or only liposuction?
There’s more than one way to slim down your midsection. Depending on your aesthetic goals, a tummy tuck or liposuction may be better suited to your needs. Liposuction works well for patients who want to remove fatty tissue and who have solid skin elasticity. A tummy tuck is better for those who want to remove loose, saggy skin or repair weakened abdominal muscles.
What’s the difference between a full tummy tuck and a mini tummy tuck?
A traditional tummy tuck involves a hip-to-hip incision used to remove excess tissue and fix separated abdominal muscles. A mini tummy tuck uses a smaller incision, right around the bikini line, but can only tone the area directly below the bellybutton. The majority of patients could benefit more from a full tummy tuck procedure, but your doctor may suggest one treatment over the other.
Do I need diastasis recti repair?
If you struggle with a “belly pooch” that won’t go away, you may suffer from diastasis recti. This condition, often created during pregnancy, is caused by the left and right abdominal muscles separating from one another. Tummy tuck surgery is one of the few ways to treat this common issue directly. Your doctor will be able to assess your midsection to see if your muscles need repair.
How long is tummy tuck recovery?
Recovery is different for each patient, but most people fully recover at around 6 weeks. Patients can typically return to work and daily activities after 10 to 14 days. Depending on the details of your surgery (such as drains or incision types), your surgeon will be able to give you a customized recovery timeline.
Can I prevent scars after tummy tuck surgery?
Tummy tuck scars are purposely placed low across the midsection. This is especially true for mini tummy tuck procedures that make the incision around the bikini line. You can ask your doctor during your consultation where your scars will be and how you can best tend to them. With proper care and some post-op attention, your tummy tuck scars should be easy to hide.
By feeling informed about these issues before your consultation, you can feel more comfortable and confident throughout the surgery process. Browse our tummy tuck before-and-after photos to see examples of real patient results. If you have any other questions for a plastic surgeon in Sacramento, feel free to request a consultation online or call (916) 929-1833 (Sacramento) or (916) 773-5559 (Granite Bay).
Originally published March 2020; Updated March 2021