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Body Contouring Procedures After Weight Loss in NYC
Every patient’s midsection responds differently to massive weight loss. For this reason, board certified plastic surgeon Dr. Schwartz offers a variety of plastic surgery procedures that can improve the look of this troublesome area at his practice in New York City. The terms are often confusing, but it is important to understand your options clearly so that you can choose the procedure that will best fit your needs and expectations.
Panniculectomy After Weight Loss in NYC
A panniculectomy is designed to remove only the overhanging skin and tissues below the belly button. The excess skin above the belly button is not removed. This procedure is often performed on patients who are still significantly overweight but have skin irritation from their overhanging skin. Patients with overhanging abdominal skin may experience frequent rashes, infections, or ulcerations in this fold, creating hygiene issues and odor. This procedure can be performed before all weight loss is completed especially if the problems caused by the overhanging skin are not responsive to medical treatments. Since the skin above the belly button and the muscles are not improved this does not have the cosmetic advantages of a tummy tuck, and does not truly address most weight loss patient’s cosmetic issues.
Abdominoplasty After Weight Loss in NYC
After dramatic weight loss, you are likely to find that neither diet nor exercise will eliminate the loose and saggy skin that has stretched over time. In addition, the abdominal muscles are often quite loose from the weight gain and loss. Abdominoplasty, or tummy tuck, addresses these two major problems in the post-bariatric population.
This is a surgical procedure that is mostly performed with a general anesthetic and entails removal of the excess skin and fat, and tightening of the abdominal muscles at Dr. Mark H. Schwartz’s practice in New York City. The incision is made quite low in the abdomen, at the pubic region, so that any scarring is hidden by most underwear and swimwear (and yes you will wear a bathing suit!). An abdominoplasty takes between two and four hours depending on the extent of the work involved and whether or not it is combined with liposuction. After the incision is made, the abdominal skin and fat is lifted to the uppermost part of the abdomen. The umbilicus is cut free from the skin and left on its attachment. The umbilicus is later brought out through a new incision. The abdominal muscles are tightened with sutures to flatten the abdomen in men and women, and to narrow the waistline in women. Excess skin and fat are removed and the incision is closed. The pubic area is lifted and sometimes flattened as well, either with direct fat removal or liposuction.
There are several variations from the “classic” tummy tuck described above which may apply to weight loss patients. With an “extended” abdominoplasty the incision extends to the flanks and lower back, and thus enables additional removal of skin and fat. A “fleur de lis” abdominoplasty includes a vertical scar along with the classic hairline scar, allowing for removal of skin and tissue in a “side to side” manner. Both of these procedures are a bit more extensive than a classic abdominoplasty but may provide improved contour when necessary.
Abdominoplasty can be an inpatient or outpatient procedure, depending on the extent of the surgery and the patient’s desires. Returning to work can take anywhere from two to three weeks, while full recovery may take six to eight weeks. Weight loss patients in particular experience significant, long-term results with a dramatically improved abdominal area. Contact Dr. Mark H. Schwartz at his New York City practice today for a Abdominoplasty consultation.