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What Are the Side Effects of Tummy Tuck Surgery?

By Sheryl Pilcher on August 25, 2014

A woman with a tight and toned tummyIf you are embarrassed by a loose or bulging excess stomach skin that just won’t respond to sit ups and strict dieting, a tummy tuck may be the answer. With this procedure, Dr. Sheryl Pilcher of Accent Plastic Surgery, P.A., can remove excess skin and tighten damaged muscles to give you a sleek, sexy figure. However, if you are considering our San Antonio practice for your tummy tuck, you may be wondering about the side effects. Tummy tucks are safe, minimal risk procedures. Although it is normal to experience some swelling and discomfort during your recovery, there is a very low chance that you will have long-term or health-threatening complications. To learn more about tummy tucks and how you can reduce your risks even further, call our office today.

The Tummy Tuck Procedure

Before performing a tummy tuck, Dr. Pilcher will administer general anesthesia. Then she will create one or two incisions, precisely created to minimize visible scars. The length and location of the incisions will vary, but generally the first one is located in the pubic area. If needed, a second incision may go around your navel.

After creating the incisions, Dr. Pilcher will lift and tighten the underlying abdominal muscles. Often, these muscles can become stretched following weight loss or pregnancy. If necessary, Dr. Pilcher will also perform liposuction to remove stubborn fat cells. Then she will trim off extra skin before gently laying it back down over the new, smooth contours of your tummy.

Short-Term Side Effects

After a tummy tuck procedure, you will have some swelling and discomfort. To minimize your swelling and reduce healing time, you should wear a compression bandage or garment. This device will also help your skin to adhere to your stomach muscles more tightly. You can often control your discomfort with over-the-counter-pain medication, and Dr. Pilcher may prescribe additional medication. Numbness and fatigue are common, as well. All of these short-term side effects typically dissipate within a few weeks, although it may take several months before swelling fully subsides. Long before this time, however, you should already begin to see the dramatic results of your tummy tuck.

Long-Term Risks

Tummy tucks have few long-term side effects. However, no surgery is without risks. Potential complications following a tummy tuck include:

  • Infection
  • Blood clots
  • Asymmetry
  • Unsatisfactory results
  • The need for revision surgery
  • Bleeding
  • Difficulties with wound healing
  • Anesthesia complications
  • Hyperpigmentation
  • Skin loss
  • Fat necrosis

Although these side effects are already quite minimal, you can further reduce your risks by choosing an experienced surgeon like Dr. Pilcher. You should also get plenty of rest, wear your compression garment, avoid smoking, take all prescribed medication, and follow all post-surgical instructions.

Dr. Pilcher will work hard to conceal the incisions in the natural folds and curves of your body, but there will be some permanent scarring.  Generally, these scars can be concealed in the bikini line, and the doctor can also provide ointment to aid healing and reduce the appearance of scar tissue.

Learn More about Tummy Tucks

If you are considering a tummy tuck and would like to learn more about the risks and side effects, give us a call today. Our friendly staff will be happy to answer your questions and book your initial consultation. 

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San Antonio Office

255 E Sonterra Blvd
Ste 201
San Antonio, TX 78258

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San Antonio Office

255 E Sonterra Blvd
Ste 201
San Antonio, TX 78258

Open Today 8:30am - 5:00pm

More Info Directions (210) 654-9900