Do You Have to Suck in Your Stomach After Tummy Tuck to Get Good Result?

I had a full TT 6 months ago and find that in order to get the result I wanted (what you see in all the pictures of TTs online) I have to suck in my stomach! Is this right? You can see pictures in a previous question: the last photo, the one that looks right, is after sucking in my stomach big time! Those photos were taken 7 weeks post op but not much has changed since. Is this the norm? Do you have to suck in?

Doctor Answers 2

Inadequate results or persistent bulge after a tummy tuck.

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Many patients expect that they will have a tummy tuck, and after their surgery they will have a flat abdomen.  And for many patients, this does happen.

Why do some patients have a persistent bulge after their surgery?

The plastic surgeon is only tightening what is there, the skin and usually the fascia.  If the fascia is weak, it is weak.  A week fascia will be more prone to forming another bulge than a stronger fascia with strong elastic fibers.

Ladies who have twins, or gain large amounts of weight during their pregnancies, are more prone to having a weak fascia.

The second reason is fat inside the abdomen.  When the plastic surgeon tightens the fascia, he or she does not remove fat from inside the abdomen.  So you are essentially getting a tighter envelope, but the fat inside the abdomen remains.  This is a very common cause of dissatisfaction in patients.  It is best for the plastic surgeon to point out the fat inside the abdomen before the surgery, and explain that this will limit the results of the surgery.

The good news for such patients is that losing weight does several things.  

First, the abdomen looks better since the intraabdominal fat reduces in size.

More importantly, the intraabdominal fat associated with diabetes and heart disease shrinks, making the patient more healthy.  They live longer and have a better quality of life.

In some patients, a bit more skin and fat can be removed, making the skin envelope tighter.  This can also improve the results, if this is the cause of the bulge.


Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
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Results after a tummy tuck

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You shouldn't really have to hold in your stomach after a tummy tuck.  Return to your plastic surgeon if you have any concerns.

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.