Santa Barbara cosmetic surgeon Dr. Terry Perkins has been performing cosmetic surgery for over 30 years. People see Dr. Perkins for facelifts, rhinoplasty, neck lift surgery, and also for body contouring through liposuction. Many of those who seek liposuction from Dr. Perkins are women who have had one or more children and cannot shed stubborn stomach and flank fat, regardless of leading a healthy lifestyle and steadily exercising.
For many women, one or more pregnancies can really affect the abdominal area. After the beautiful baby is born, the stretched stomach skin may never return to it’s pre-pregnancy tautness. Additionally, sometimes the abdominal muscles become separated, which can affect the ability to re-firm the stomach area through exercise. It can be very disheartening to shed the pregnancy weight but be left with a pooch that looks like the beginning of another pregnancy!
It is usually at this point that women seek the help of a cosmetic surgeon for abdominal liposuction or a tummy tuck to reclaim the belly they once had. Abdominolplasty, commonly known as a “tummy tuck”, can address either the full abdomen or the lower abdomen below the belly button. When the full abdomen is treated, an incision is made that is slightly longer than a C-section to allow the doctor to tighten the abdominal muscles and liposuction out excess fat. The belly button is detached and repositioned and excess skin is removed. The end result is usually more definition of the waist and a flatter, tighter abdomen. A “mini tummy tuck” involves the lower abdomen where muscle tightening may be done if the excess is limited to below the belly button. Excess skin is removed and this procedure is done with a shorter incision.
Dr. Perkins has observed that his patients who underwent abdominal liposuction and/or a tummy tuck are thrilled with their result. With a flatter stomach and more accentuated waistline, overall body appearance can change dramatically – allowing clothes to fit better – and giving the person a more positive body image. In fact, it’s not only Dr. Perkins’ patients who feel this boost. The April issue of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery studied the self-esteem of patients who had cosmetic liposuction and/or tummy tuck surgery. The average age of the patients was 42 and the self-esteem assessment was taken four months after the surgery. Overall, 86% reported an improved sense of self-esteem post procedure and about 70% reported improved quality of life. So it seems that women who get abdominal surgery end up with a slimmer waist and a more satisfied sense of self. Not a bad deal!