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Choosing An Abdominoplasty For Your Muscle Tightening Goals6 min read

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Dr. Phillip Chang

Board Certified By The American Board of Plastic Surgeons.
Voted Top Plastic Surgeon in Loudoun, Virginia
Offices in Leesburg, Virginia.

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The rectus abdominis muscles, commonly known as the abdominal muscles, pertain to the muscles that run up and down along your midsection. They lie next to each other like two columns. When you age, get pregnant, or gain weight (and lose this weight again), these muscles expand and stretch out, go up and down, separate and pull apart from the core. Furthermore, the abdominal wall goes lax. 

When your abdominal muscles split apart and go through these changes, you get what is called a diastasis recti. You lose the firm and tight abdominal look of your youth. You develop a pooch in your belly. Your belly sticks out in a way that makes you feel less attractive. 

No amount of dieting or exercise can get your abdominal muscles back to how they were before pregnancy or weight gain/loss. What you need is an abdominoplasty muscle tightening procedure or what most people call a “tummy tuck.” With this cosmetic surgery procedure, you CAN get back the attractive, tight, and taut tummy that everyone wants!

What Is Abdominoplasty Muscle Tightening?

Abdominoplasty muscle tightening is a reconstructive or cosmetic surgical procedure. It involves tightening the abdominal muscles. It also removes excess fat and the extra baggy skin from the tummy area, which is usually the result of considerable weight gain and loss. 

When you gain and lose weight or become pregnant, the subsequent stretching of your abdomen causes the abdominal muscles to shift and fall out of position. The muscles pull apart from each other, split, and become loose, making your tummy lose its usual tight look. The abdominal fascia is the connective tissue around and in between the abdominal muscles.

When a surgeon does abdominoplasty muscle tightening on you, he stitches and tightens the abdominal fascia so that the abdominal muscles are pulled back into their original position, i.e., right up alongside each other. By relocating the abdominal muscles back to where they were before the stretching, the procedure effectively makes your abdomen look flat and taut again.

You can opt for a full or complete abdominoplasty where your surgeon gets rid of excess skin and tightens and pulls back the underlying core muscles across the entire abdomen, including those around the belly button. He contours the tissue, muscle, and skin as required.

If your problem lies with weak and slack lower abdominal muscles only, you may opt for a mini or partial abdominoplasty. Your surgeon will work only on the muscles found in the lower abdominal area or below the navel.

What to Expect When You Have an Abdominoplasty

Before the Surgery

If you are a smoker, your surgeon will recommend that you stop smoking for at least two weeks before and after the surgery. He will suggest that you try to quit entirely since research shows that smoking deters healing and even triggers complications.

Your doctor will also suggest that you include healthy and well-balanced food in your diet to help facilitate healing.

Be upfront with your doctor about all your medical conditions. Inform him about any supplement, herbal treatment, or prescription drugs that you are taking. Your doctor may tell you to quit taking some of these medicines for a specified period before and after abdominoplasty.

During Surgery

During surgery, your doctor will make a horizontal, rounded cut close to the pubic hairline. The incision will run across the entire abdominal area (from hip to hip). 

Your surgeon will lift the skin and the fatty tissue. He will stitch the underlying connective tissue to tighten the separated or loose abdominal muscles. He then removes the excess fat and trims off the excess skin. If he is doing a full abdominoplasty, he will reposition the navel and close the incision using clips, tape, or stitches. 

After Surgery

As in most surgeries, abdominoplasty comes with post-operative pain and swelling, which may last for weeks or months. You may experience bruises, weariness, and numbness in the abdominal area. Address these problems by being faithful in taking prescribed painkillers and following your doctor’s instructions about pain management. Get the rest that you need. Stay away from strenuous and grueling work for the first six weeks after surgery.

Should You Consider Going for Abdominoplasty?

Do you feel frustrated by your inability to have the tight abdominal muscles you used to have before weight gain/loss or pregnancy? You go on highly regimented diets. You exercise. You do crunches and other abs workouts. But your efforts do not bring the results that you want. Nothing seems to work – and you become increasingly upset and discouraged.

Abdominoplasty muscle tightening can be the solution that you are looking for. 

This procedure is highly recommended if you have no severe health problems. Exercise, diet, or the combination of the two will not effectively address the problem of abdominal muscles that have grown weak, lax, and unattractive due to pregnancy. Abdominoplasty is your best bet. 

The procedure is also an excellent option if you have experienced obesity and now find loose skin and excess fatty deposits around your tummy. 

An abdominoplasty muscle tightening procedure repairs the abdominal wall and reinstates its integrity. It tightens and restores separated and weak abdominal muscles. It whittles down your waistline, improves the shape and tone of your tummy, and gives you tight, firm, and attractive abdominal muscles.

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For those wondering whether tummy tuck might be the best cosmetic solution for you, we invite you to simply come in for a complimentary consultation with Dr. Chang or one of the cosmetic laser and injection nurses to explore whether you would make a good candidate. To find out more whether Aesthetica can help you, contact us online or at 703-729-5553 to arrange an appointment. Dr. Phillip Chang is a board-certified plastic surgeon in Northern Virginia near Leesburg, Virginia and an expert in a wide variety of cosmetic treatments.

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