22 Jun Dr Scamp discusses Abdominoplasty
Dr Scamp says that skin that is significantly stretched by pregnancy or major weight loss may not return to its original size and shape. This can leave skin folds on the upper arms, the sides of the chest and the torso. Leg skin may be markedly redundant and breasts may have first been stretched and then lost volume. Innovative techniques use some of these skin folds to recreate the curve of the buttock and breast. Advances have also helped reduce the incidence of delayed healing in arms, trunk and thighs as these long wounds are commonly troublesome and slow to heal, Dr Scamp says. He says that liposuction can help restore shape “however if skin elasticity is poor liposuction alone can give a deflated look and there may be significant skin irregularity because the stretched skin has been damaged and can’t shrink to smooth the contour. The combination of liposuction with more extensive techniques can give good shape there”.
Abdominoplasty (Tummy Tuck) techniques have shown significant advances. “The abdomen is the site most commonly ravaged by weight fluctuations and pregnancy. As well as the obvious stretch of the skin, the tissues of the abdominal muscle wall have been damaged by the expanding uterus or excess weight gain.” “Abdominoplasty combines the removal of excess skin and fat with muscle sheath tightening to restore youthful tone and shape” Dr Scamp says. This narrows the waistline and flattens the abdomen. The scar is long but situated as low as possible to make it easier to conceal beneath clothing. Limited liposuction can be performed at the same time to accentuate the shape by tapering and lengthening the waistline. Adaptations in the procedure pioneered in France have helped enhance contour, reduce the complication rate and shorten recovery time” he says. Dr Scamp says the procedure is usually performed under a general anaesthetic in hospital. A two or three night stay is common. To reduce discomfort fine catheters may be left in the abdominal wall to trickle local anaesthetic around the site of the muscle sheath repair for two days after the procedure. It’s the muscle wall repair that inhibits mobility and most people need one or two weeks away from work. However full recovery takes four to six weeks.
Body contouring procedures are amongst the largest cosmetic surgery operations. The effect on body shape can be dramatic. The surgeon is basically adjusting the excess skin and muscle wall to fit the new trimmer shape. The slimmer the body the more dramatic the improvement in that shape, Dr Scamp says.