May 5, 2016
There are plenty of factors that contribute to weight gain, especially in today’s day in age. Not only do genetics play a major role in the appearance and size of our bodies and specifically abdomen, but medical conditions may also play a role. In addition to that, we now spend much of our daily lives in front of a computer, sitting at a desk, with little to no physical activity throughout the day. Our sedentary lifestyles contribute to significant weight gain and feelings of fatigue. You may literally feel like you’re being weighed down.
The abdominoplasty procedure is often called a tummy tuck, and it’s not just for women. Men who are generally healthy may be good candidates for the procedure. The purpose of the tummy tuck is to remove excess fat and skin from the abdominal area. The tummy tuck procedure also tightens the abdominal wall and strengthens the abdominal muscles. Excess skin and fat may result from a significant weight gain that has responded somewhat to changes in diet and exercise; the procedure is most helpful for men to shed those last few pounds of skin and fat that remain.
Tummy tuck candidates should have relatively elastic skin which will be able to handle the surgery. Additionally, they should be of stable mental condition. The abdominoplasty procedure is quite strenuous on the body and requires a lot of mental patience and consistency. The recovery process may be timely and difficult, so it’s especially important for the patient to understand before the surgery what is to be expected during the recovery period. The abdominoplasty procedure is typically performed under general anesthesia as an outpatient procedure. You will not be able to drive yourself home following the procedure, so be sure to have a friend or loved one ready to help you after with getting comfortable.
The tummy tuck procedure can also be performed in conjunction with liposuction, in order to remove moderate to significant amounts of excess fat. Undergoing both procedures at one time may save you money, as you will only need to be administered the anesthesia once. Additionally, you will also only need to pay the facility or hospital fees once. That being said, the cost of an abdominoplasty may be upwards of $7,000. Costs are similar for both men and women but typically they are dependent upon the geographical location of your surgeon, anesthetic and medication fees, facility fees, and others. Insurance may not cover the cost of a procedure if it is done solely for cosmetic purposes.
The tummy tuck procedure can be performed with varying degrees of intensity. A full male abdominoplasty is performed by cutting the stomach across the two hipbones. The surgeon tightens and reshapes the skin, tissue, and muscles. During this full abdominoplasty, your belly button may be moved. Drainage tubes are typically placed under the skin in order to promote healing and minimize infection. On the other hand, a partial or mini male abdominoplasty is performed for patients needing less extreme weight corrections. The belly button is typically left in place during the mini abdominoplasty. The surgeon will separate the skin between the midsection and the navel in order to remove the excess fat and skin. Additionally, if your individual circumstances allow, the partial abdominoplasty may be performed with an endoscope, which is a tube with a camera attached at the end.
When the surgery is completed, the surgeon will advise the patient to apply ice packs to the area. The ice packs, prescribed medications, and getting plenty of rest will help to ensure the patient a speedy recovery. The surgeon will also recommend scheduling follow-up visits in order to monitor the patient’s progress during the recovery period. The patient should avoid rigorous physical activity for several weeks following the procedure. It is common to experience scarring and soreness after the abdominoplasty, which will vary according to the extent of the surgery, and should diminish over time.
There are some risks associated with abdominoplasty procedures, including the development of hematomas or blood clots. This risk may be higher for men rather than women. Men also have thicker skin than women do, which puts them at a slightly higher risk of bleeding during and after the procedure. Be sure to discuss your individual risk factors with your surgeon prior to committing to the procedure.
It is important to understand that the abdominoplasty or tummy tuck procedure is not an alternative to healthy eating choices or regular exercise. This procedure is a major operation and comes with risks just like any other medical procedure. It should be considered as a “last resort” option for those who have tried to lose their excess weight through healthy alternatives. Be sure to discuss your personal aesthetic goals with your plastic surgeon before undergoing any medical procedure in order to manage expectations about what results you may experience from the procedure.
It is not uncommon for men to feel self-conscious about their body image and want to undergo a procedure to feel better about themselves. Plastic surgery is relatively common among women of varying ages, but it has become increasingly common among men. Our society has become more and more aware of physical appearance, especially in today’s job market. We often judge people by their looks, even if we don’t mean to. This may make men more aware of their slight imperfections and they may become self-conscious about them.
The decision to undergo an abdominoplasty is a personal and individual decision. Everyone has their own ideas of how they want their body to look and what they hope to achieve with the medical procedures they undergo. Be sure to cover your medical and family history with your surgeon in order to understand your risks and what you’ll gain from undergoing the procedure you choose.
Dr. Amjadi MD, DDS, FACS
Certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgeons
915 Gessner Rd #870
Houston, TX 77024
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