Are You A Candidate For A Mini Tummy Tuck?

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When Diet and Exercise Just Aren’t Enough
Dear Dr. Moynahan,

I am a forty-seven year old mother of two. I am five foot two inches tall and weigh one hundred and fifteen pounds. I eat a fairly healthy diet that for the most part consists of low fat and low carbs. Ok, I must admit that on weekends, especially when dinning out, I will have a dessert or two. I go to the gym and exercise regularly, doing on average of one hundred and twenty five crunches three to four times per week. I really try to do all the right things, but no matter how much I exercise or how much I diet I still have a protruding belly. I dread swimsuit season, nothing depresses me more than trying on bathing suits except maybe being on the beach with no where to hide. Can you help me?

Donna Louissa
Port Jefferson, New York

Dear Donna,

During winter months it is easier to hide figure flaws under layered looks, bulky sweaters, jackets etc., but with the warmer weather and swim suit season approaching, we can’t help but notice the new body conscious fashions in the pages of Vogue, Bazaar, and other fashion magazines. Here is some information about a common question I hear often, "What is a mini-tummy tuck?"

The Problem:

Even though we are at our optimal weight the effects of age, pregnancies, weight losses and gains cause the skin of the abdominal wall to stretch and become loose. Fat collects under the skin; the muscle walls of the abdomen become relaxed and despite all the diets and crunches, the abdomen is still pronounced.

The Solution:

A partial abdominoplasty is commonly referred to as a “mini tummy tuck” and is often accompanied by liposuction. It is a common surgical procedure that is designed to remove excess abdominal skin and fat as well as tighten the paired midline stomach muscles that extend from above the navel to the pubis.

The Procedure:

As always, the consultation with the physician is the first step in achieving optimal surgical results. It is during the consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon that the patient’s goals are expressed and realistic surgical goals are established. Desired aesthetic improvements can be achieved through a personalized plan of treatment.

A mini abdominoplasty is a surgical procedure that is performed in a hospital or on an out patient basis in an ambulatory surgical center. The anesthesia used is dependent upon your general medical condition and your doctor’s medical judgment. General anesthesia or an intravenous sedation may be utilized.

Although highly individualized the average time required to perform the procedure is between two to three hours. Licensed anesthesia providers closely monitor your heart rate, rhythm, blood pressure, pulse, respiration, temperature, carbon dioxide and oxygen levels as the operation is done.

Following surgery, a registered nurse in the recovery monitors you until established discharge criteria are met. You are then released from the facility in the care of a responsible adult (i.e. family member, friend or nurse.) Painkillers are prescribed and taken as needed. You are advised not to drink alcoholic beverages or drive while taking this medication.

Incisions are covered with a surgical dressing that protects the surgical site. Sponge baths are allowed during the immediate postoperative period. Sutures are removed within one to two weeks. Swelling and bruising subsides within two to six weeks following surgery. Numbness around the operative site may persist for several weeks.

During recuperation, complete bed rest is avoided. Ambulation is encouraged to minimize the risk of blood clots that can lead to serious complications. Return to work is dependent on several factors and is highly personalized as are exercise regimes.

Complete healing may require six to twelve months time, although it is usually quite less.


An aesthetically pleasing recon toured abdomen is achieved. In many patients stretch marks are eliminated. Long-term benefits may be dramatic in enhancing the cosmetic appearance of the abdominal region.

Please note that a mini abominoplasty is an elective surgery and is generally not covered by insurance.
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