Tummy Tuck

Frederick H Watkins, MD

Plastic Surgeon & Cosmetic Surgeon located in Rockville, MD & McLean, VA

Abdominoplasty, commonly called a tummy tuck, is a surgical procedure that refines and corrects the abdominal contours. Frederick H. Watkins, MD, has extensive experience in abdominoplasty, and has helped many men and women in Rockville, Maryland, and McLean, Virginia, feel great about the shape of their abdomens and waistlines. If you’re curious about abdominoplasty, schedule a consultation online or over the phone today.

Tummy Tuck Q & A

What is abdominoplasty?

Abdominoplasty is a surgical procedure used to improve the contouring of your abdomen and waist. Often referred to as a tummy tuck, an abdominoplasty removes excess skin and fat and also repairs weakened or separated abdominal muscles. 

While abdominoplasty does wonders for refining the shape and firmness of your abdomen, there are limitations on what this procedure can achieve. Abdominoplasty cannot address stretch marks or the appearance of your skin (except in the areas where the damaged skin is directly removed). It also isn’t intended as a weight-loss option.

What motivates men and women to seek a tummy tuck?

The shape of your abdomen changes over time, and some of those changes can be addressed with diet and exercise. There are some changes, however, that cannot be corrected without surgical intervention. 

Some of the factors that lead men and women to pursue a tummy tuck include:

  • Aging
  • Prior abdominal surgery
  • Hereditary factors
  • Significant weight loss or gain
  • Pregnancy

It’s important to understand that while tummy tuck results are permanent, significant weight gain can alter those results. This procedure is best suited for men and women who have achieved and can maintain a stable weight. 

What happens during a tummy tuck?

You’ll receive general anesthesia to keep you comfortable during your procedure. Dr. Watkins injects local anesthesia while you are asleep to help with postoperative pain control. He also offers the very popular medication Exparel, which is a sustained release type of local anesthesia for improved postoperative pain management. Once you’re resting, Dr. Watkins creates an incision across the lower portion of your abdomen, near your pubic hairline. He’ll also make an incision around your navel. 

The next step involves carefully separating your abdominal skin and fat from your abdominal muscles. This allows the underlying structures to be altered before the skin is redraped. Dr. Watkins removes any excess fat and other tissue, and repairs any separation of your abdominal muscle wall. Finally, your skin is smoothed across your new abdominal contours and your belly button is repositioned before the incisions are closed. 

In some cases, a procedure called a mini-abdominoplasty is used to create a more aesthetically pleasing lower abdomen. This approach only focuses on the portion of your abdomen below your navel, and uses smaller incisions than a traditional abdominoplasty. 

If you’d like to explore these options in greater detail, schedule a consultation with Dr. Watkins today. You can book online or call to speak with a member of the administrative staff.