In a partial tummy tuck, the surgeon makes a large incision across the lower abdomen. The skin from the abdominal wall is separated and the excess fat is removed. The excess skin is neatly cut to suit the new profile. The remaining skin is then pulled down and stitched together at the line of the first incision.
For a full tummy tuck, the surgeon makes and incision across the lower abdomen, just above the pubic area, from hip bone to hip bone. He or she makes a second incision to free the belly button from the tissue that surrounds it and separates the skin from the abdominal wall. He or she then pulls down the muscles and stitches them into their new position, removes fat deposits and removes the excess skin. A new hole is then cut for the belly button and it is stitched back into place. Finally, the surgeon pulls the remaining skin down and stitches it together at the line of the first incision. In some cases, the surgeon may also utilize liposuction to help remove some of the fat before closing the incision.
Your stomach should appear flatter and your abdominal muscles should feel and look firmer as they may have been repaired. After the operation, you may find it hard to stand up straight and it will feel as if your stomach is tugging- this will disappear over time. You may also experience numbness in your abdominal area. Scars will be permanent, but will fade in time (usually after a year), although there is a risk that puckering on the outside edge of the scar will remain.
After the procedure for the initial few days one will be nursed with your knees and hips bent. This is to take the pressure off the muscle to help with post-operative pain and discomfort. It is likely that there will be drains attached to remove fluids from the surgical site. An adjustable firm bandage is put around the stomach to support the surgery and decrease swelling. It is important to maintain a good healthy diet and to avoid becoming constipated as straining can make the stomach uncomfortable.