Abdominoplasty, also known as a tummy tuck, is a relatively common procedure after gastric bypass surgery. When weight is lost quickly, the skin does not have the elasticity to snap back to where it has not been in many years. This leaves a patient with an ‘apron’ of skin that hangs. Even though this skin can be a positive reminder of how far a patient has come, in many cases it is an annoyance a patient would like to get rid of as quickly as possible.
In most cases abdominoplasty is accompanied by some liposuction in order to even out the look of the body once the excess skin is cut off. There may be a need to create a new belly button depending on where the excess skin is taken from. After the procedure, there is a mandatory rest period so that the incision can close and heal properly. In most cases there will be a surgical drain in place for approximately ten days in order to drain any excess fluid from the surgical site.
Generally, an abdominoplasty takes between one to five hours depending on the amount of skin being removed and whether liposuction or belly button reconstruction are done in addition to the tummy tuck. It is important to have someone able to not only drive a patient home after surgery, but stay over for the first night or more after surgery.
Abdominoplasty is generally performed by a plastic surgeon. If considering this procedure, you should first consult with Dr. Stewart to ensure you have reached an appropriate level of weight loss for the procedure. Dr. Stewart can also refer you to surgeons that are experienced in performing abdominoplasty on patients that have had gastric bypass surgery.