When the distension of the tissues of the stomach area is too great to be treated with just a liposuction, an abdominoplasty is carried out in order to tighten the skin.

Undergoing an abdominoplasty may also be necessary after a pregnancy, or if there is a significant loss of weight.  Additionally, in some cases, it can even be combined with a tightening of the muscles of the abdominal wall (diastasis), and with the liposuction of some parts of the abdomen.

A cut to the abdomen is made during the procedure, leaving a scar above the pubic area that is longer than, but similar to, a Caesarean scar. In severe cases, a scar may be present around the navel as well. For a less invasive abdominoplasty, however, the scar is isolated to just above the pubic area as no incision is needed near the navel.

Before the procedure

Please allow yourself an unavailability period of 2 weeks.

For patients who smoke and/or take oral contraceptives, it is imperative that they stop at least 1 month before the procedure in order to avoid phlebitis and pulmonary embolisms. Eight days before the procedure, aspirin-based and anti-inflammatory medication must also be discontinued to reduce the risk of bleeding. Finally, all patients must attend 2 mandatory consultations before the surgery.

The procedure

Excluding cases of less invasive abdominoplasty, the procedure is always carried out under general anesthesia and lasts between 2 hours and 4 hours. A liposuction may also be carried out simultaneously, with the stretched or damaged skin removed as the healthy skin is lifted in same way as that of an abdominal wall lifting.

Hospitalization takes place on the same day and lasts between 1 and 3 days.

After the procedure

No drain is left in place, the garment is removed, and patients can have their first shower the day after surgery. A shaping girdle should be worn both day and a night for about two months. Additionally, to help reduce the risk of phlebitis, an anticoagulant treatment should be taken for 10 days following the surgery.

Professional activities can be resumed after 2 or 3 weeks, but sports should be avoided for 2 months.

Several follow-up consultations will take place. Post-surgery, the definitive results will take from 3 to 6 months to finalize. However, scars will remain sensitive and need to be protected from the sun for at least one year.

Pregnancies and substantial fluctuations in weight are strongly advised against after the surgery, because they may negatively impact the result.

It should also be noted that, although the first shower is permitted the day after the surgery, taking baths should be avoided for one month. Finally, again, it is imperative that scars be protected from the sun for one year after the surgery.

For more information, please consult the fact sheet of the authority of the French Society of Plastic Reconstructive and Aesthetic surgery (Société Française de Chirurgie Plastique Reconstructrice et Esthétique – SOFCPRE).