Over the past five years, body contouring surgery has been the fastest growing area within the field of plastic surgery. As plastic surgeons have gained experience in this rapidly expanding field with an ever growing population of patients, surgical technique has also evolved as we strive to achieve better and lasting results. As the plastic surgeon for the New Program, I have had the opportunity to operate on numerous patients throughout the years. In general, bariatric patients represent some of the healthiest patients I operate on, mentally, physically, and spiritually. Because of this, I find bariatric plastic surgery one of the most gratifying parts about my practice.
The tummy tuck is by far the most commonly performed procedure after bariatric surgery. Ideally, patients should be near their goal weight following bariatric surgery. This is because the most cosmetically optimal results are achieved after all of the excess weight has been lost. Certain patients however, feel that they have reached a plateau with their weight loss, and in these instances, we do go ahead with the tummy tuck since many patients after plastic surgery get further motivation to lose weight and exercise. A tummy tuck procedure takes 3 ½ to 4 hours of time. It requires general anesthesia and an overnight stay at the hospital. People are usually back to work by 2 weeks and also back to full activity including exercise, by 3 weeks. Insurance does not usually cover a full tummy tuck procedure. However, a portion of the procedure may be covered through insurance.
The American Society of Plastic Surgeons has an excellent website for information regarding plastic surgery at www.plasticsurgery.org.
Article courtesy of Richard Lee, M.D.