Ask a doctor

Tummy Tuck for an Obese Person W/hx of Multiple Abdominal Surgeries?

 a tummy tuck for an obese person w/multiple abdominal surgeries - do you mean that the lopsided belly is caused by a weakened abdominal wall due to the hernias - also on the left side - and that the incisions I have are making this worse? The contents of my abdomen moved over after the surgery per my doctor, and my regular M.D. agrees with this. My BMI is over 30, btw. What can be done to correct this if not a tummy tuck? Can adehsions make this worse?

Doctor Answers (2)

Tummy tuck with history abdominal surgeries

+1

You describe a lopsided abdomen and weakness. I often find that the fascia is weak and the muscle separated with previous abdominal surgery, especially lower vertical scars. A CT scan prior to surgery will show if there is a true hernia, where the intestines actually protrude through the abdominal wall. Either way, the muscles should be brought together to the normal position, possibly with use of mesh if the fascia is in poor condition. Go to a plastic surgeon specializing in abdominal wall reconstruction, not just cosmetic surgery, to get the best results, both functional and cosmetic.


Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Tummy Tuck for an Obese Person W/hx of Multiple Abdominal Surgeries

+1

Thanks for the added info. A tummy tuck does a number of things, but not everything we want. 

  • removes excess skin
  • removes excess fat adjacent to that skin
  • tightens the abdominal wall where it has been weakened by stretch and relaxation, as occurs after pregancy and massive weight loss. 

Removing extra skin and fat will not change the issues within the abdominal cavity. A plastic surgeon would be unlikely to want to tighten an abdominal wall that has had numerous hernia repairs. 

If something can be done to balance your abdominal wall it is something that will be in the tool box of a hernia surgeon, not likely a plastic surgeon. 

If your surgeon feels at a dead end, one possible resource would be a nearby university medical center. Many departments of surgery will have and abdominal wall and/or hernia expert, and that person may be a good resource for consultation.

Thanks, best wishes.

Jourdan Gottlieb, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 34 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.