Dr. Robert J Paresi, Jr. MD
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Drainless Tummy Tuck

Drainless Tummy Tuck Surgery in Downers Grove, IL

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Drainless Tummy Tuck

A tummy tuck, also known as an abdominoplasty, slims and tightens the upper and lower stomach by removing loose skin and the stubborn fat that is diet and exercise resistance. It helps many women after pregnancy and childbirth, anyone who has lost a major amount of weight, and people who develop loose skin from natural aging. Dr. Paresi performs tummy tuck surgery to help patients who are in good physical health and at or near a stable, healthy weight, but still have lumps, bulges, or a "pooch" that they cannot eliminate naturally. During a tummy tuck, Dr. Paresi will eliminate the patient's excess skin and fat, then tighten the internal muscles of the abdominal wall and smoothing the remaining skin and tissue for a slim, taut middle. After an abdominoplasty, patients are able to wear tighter, smaller clothing with confidence.

How to have a Great Tummy Tuck

A tummy tuck, or abdominoplasty, is designed to remove excess skin and fat while restoring the abdominal shape. This involves the use of a lower abdominal incision and tightening, or plication, of the central abdominal muscles. This is often the ideal operation for females who have had children but can’t seem to restore their tummy area to its pre-pregnancy shape despite diet and exercise.

Proper incision placement and recreation of a normal appearing belly button are the two most crucial factors in achieving a natural appearing, aesthetically pleasing tummy tuck result. A properly placed abdominal incision which is low on the hips and pubic area allows patients to wear underwear and bikini bottoms. The recreation of a normal appearing belly button with minimal scarring, a retracted tight appearance, and some superior hooding really adds to a pleasing aesthetic result. The belly button is often the site of poor wound healing and scarring in many tummy tuck patients. Proper in-setting and placement of the belly button can reduce the probability of these issues.

Two new advances in tummy tuck surgery have contributed to a significant improvement in the recovery and experience of tummy tuck patients. The first improvement is the use of a ‘drain-less or drain-free’ tummy tuck. Drains were routinely used for tummy tucks during my training. Drains are the most common source of tummy tuck patient complaints in the recovery period. They often leak, are cumbersome to care for, difficult to hide under clothes, and often led to postoperative pain from pulling on the drain sites. I started using the new ‘drain-less’ technique about three years ago and patients have been thrilled with the results. We use a special ‘barbed’ internal suture technique which eliminates the need for drains. Overall, it is a win-win for both the patient and the doctor.

The second advance in tummy tuck surgery is the use of Exparel (liposomal bupivacaine) for postoperative pain control. Exparel is a long-acting local anesthetic that is injected into the operative site and incisions at the time of surgery that lasts for up to 96 hours postoperatively. This allows for much better postoperative pain control, the use of less narcotics, and a quicker return to normal activity. The difference in the level of pain control immediately after surgery has been remarkable. I recommend Exparel to all patients having tummy tuck surgery.

The combination of these new techniques for achieving a consistent, aesthetically pleasing result, as well as, the advances that have improved the recovery and overall postoperative experience have improved the overall tummy tuck experience. We are pleased to offer these improvements to patients seeking a tummy tuck. Call for a consultation today!

Full Tummy Tuck

A traditional (full) tummy tuck is suitable for both men and women who have a moderate amount of excess skin in their midsection. It is commonly performed on women post-pregnancy. During this surgery, the incision extends from hipbone to hipbone, which grants the surgeon access to a greater portion of the internal structures. Liposuction is used to remove fat and the abdominal muscles are pulled and tightly secured. The belly button is usually repositioned for natural placement. 

Mini Tummy Tuck

Individuals who are in relatively good shape but desire a flatter tummy may be good candidates for a mini tummy tuck (known as a “Brazilian tummy tuck”). These patients have loose abdominal fascia, but the muscles aren’t stretched to the point where a full tummy tuck is necessary. During surgery, a smaller incision is made along the lower abdomen, liposuction is used to remove excess fat, and the remaining skin is pulled tight. The belly button is not affected by this surgery. 

Extended Tummy Tuck

The extended tummy tuck is reserved for patients who require major skin tightening and body contouring following a major weight loss. The extended tummy tuck requires a longer incision that extends beyond the hips, as well as another one around the navel. Liposuction is used and the excess skin is trimmed away and tightened. The belly button is repositioned during this surgery.

During/After Surgery

A tummy tuck is performed under general anesthesia in an accredited surgical facility and typically takes around 2 hours to complete. It is considered an outpatient procedure. After surgery, patients will wear a compression garment and will need to rest for the first 48 hours. They should make a concerted effort to move around in order to help promote blood circulation, but should only attempt to initially stand at a 45-degree angle to protect the incision. Pain medication will be provided to help with post-operative pain. Clearance to resume exercise is usually given around 4-6 weeks. 

Extended Tummy Tuck

The price for abdominoplasty will vary depending on the technique used, the patient’s condition and aesthetic goals, as well as other factors relating to the surgical case.

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Tummy Tuck FAQs

Tummy Tuck or Lipo?

Patients who have loose skin in the lower abdomen may be better candidates for a skin tightening procedure such as a tummy tuck. If a patient is battling unwanted belly fat, but otherwise has good skin tone, liposuction (which removes fat only) may be all that is needed.

Combination Surgery?

Abdominoplasty can be combined with another cosmetic procedure, such as breast augmentation, a breast lift or liposuction that targets another area of the body. This is sometimes referred to as a  “Mommy Makeover” and is considered a common practice, especially where pregnancy, weight gain and breast-feeding are concerned.

What About Scarring?

Unfortunately, scarring is a part of this procedure. However, every effort is made to minimize scarring, and the incisions are generally placed in locations easily concealed by undergarments. For women who have had a previous C-section, the original C-section scar will be replaced with the tummy tuck incision. Most patients feel the physical results of this surgery far outweigh any scarring left behind.

Pregnancy or Weight Gain?

For optimal results, it is recommended that patients wait to have abdominoplasty until after all pregnancies have been completed. This is to ensure the stretching and weight gain that occurs with pregnancy does not compromise the results of the surgery.

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*Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary from person to person. Images may contain models.