“Patients often think I’m joking when I tell them how flat I can get their stomachs, but I exceed their expectations every time,” says Dr. Paul Vanek, a board-certified general and plastic surgeon and tummy tuck (abdominoplasty) specialist. “When I have a patient in front of me and I show her in the mirror how flat I’ll make her tummy with a lipo-abdominoplasty or a regular abdominoplasty, she’ll say, ‘There’s no way you can do that.’ And a month after the operation, if things heal the way we both hope, she’ll say, ‘I just didn’t believe I was going to get a stomach this flat.’ It just blows her mind. And it really makes me happy every time. It fires me up every time I do it.”
An abdominoplasty, or tummy tuck, is a procedure designed to contour the torso by tightening the abdominal muscle wall while removing excess skin that results from dieting or post-pregnancy weight loss. An incision is made within the “bikini line,” and the skin is elevated to expose the abdominal muscles.
Those muscles are sutured together to tighten them, and the skin is lowered down like a window shade and excised after the belly button stalk is brought out to its new position. Skin with stretch marks will be removed; if you have any stretch marks below the belly button, they will be lowered down to end up above the pubic area where they can be covered by undergarments. For Dr. Vanek, a low, easily-concealable incision is one of the hallmarks of a great tummy tuck.
“My staff and I are willing to go the extra mile and take a little more time to get that incision as low as possible,” explains Dr. Vanek. “Instead of taking the easy way out by making the incision higher – which would shorten the procedure by over half an hour – we are willing to make that incision as low as possible. Then we take the time to carefully secure that incision with a subcuticular suture technique that makes the patients so happy that their surgical incision and Victoria’s Secret are in the same zip code.”
For Dr. Vanek, the outcome of any procedure begins in the consultation process. Your individual anatomy and your aesthetic goals will create a series of surgical options for Dr. Vanek to review with you, like combining the tummy tuck with liposuction to enhance your outcome. The consultation will allow Dr. Vanek to determine your candidacy for any procedure, so do not feel that you have to decide on one before you’ve consulted with Dr. Vanek.
“Patients sometimes think they are too old to have this surgery done, but they are not and they are amazed by the results. Their stomach has always bothered them. After decades of working out and years of having a trainer tell them that if they did more crunches their abdominal wall laxity would get better, they are dismayed. They have been made to feel that they’re failures when it comes to their own efforts to get better.”
“But when I explain the anatomy from a surgeon’s perspective and the outcome that’s possible from the patient’s perspective, they are so relieved. In my sincere discussion with them, I say, “That’s why God made me.” I am able to put those abdominal muscles back where they belong, get rid of those stretch marks to the best of my ability, and make the abdomen flatter than it’s been in decades.”
“No one can guarantee perfection, but if it’s an outcome that is possible, I will strive to achieve that outcome. Give us a call.”
— Dr. Paul Vanek
Now is the time to schedule an appointment and discuss this. Tummy tucks are popular surgical procedures designed to correct the contour of the abdomen. While it is common for women to consider these after birthing their children, they can benefit both men and women when they have loose, sagging abdominal skin after significant weight change.
A tummy tuck is typically performed as an outpatient procedure, so we could likely schedule this quickly. The surgery involves an incision in the lower part of the abdomen, often below or in line with the waistline. Skin is released from the lower part of the abdomen up to the belly button. Then an incision is made around the belly button and the skin is released to the top of the abdomen. This access allows tightening of the muscles in the middle and restoration of the flat contour of the abdomen. The skin is gently redraped and trimmed and the belly button is delivered through the skin before the incision is closed. This generally takes about two hours.
Typically, two drains are placed before the skin is closed, which remain until the fluid they drain is gone. Drain removal is quick and painless in the office. During recovery, patients are placed in a series of surgical girdles over an 8-week period. After about ten days, most people can drive and return to work if their job is not too physical. They should be back to more strenuous routines in 6 weeks.
Please call my office because there are other options, more or less intensive, that could also be effective when we know more about you!