Health and a Tummy Tuck: Virginia Beach Patients Learn About the Many Benefits of an Abdominoplasty
The popularity of the tummy tuck is rising in Virginia Beach and elsewhere, as is recognition that it can be more than just an aesthetic procedure. An abdominoplasty can have health benefits, too.
Earlier this year, the American Society of Plastic Surgeons published a post explaining the medical benefits of a tummy tuck. Virginia Beach plastic surgeon Dr. Ben Hugo frequently performs the procedure at his practice, where men and women alike choose it to eliminate loose skin and fat hanging at their belly, as well as to tighten the abdominal muscles that sit underneath.
Why the attention on the tummy tuck? It appears that the procedure is on the rise. Since the year 2000, the number of patients seeking the tummy-flattening surgery has increased 87 percent. At 117,158 procedures performed in 2014 alone, the tummy tuck is just one place shy of being among the top five cosmetic surgeries performed each year by ASPS member surgeons, who have found that while a tummy tuck is, of course, an aesthetic procedure, its secondary effects can also improve a patient’s life in other ways.
The main element of a tummy tuck, which involves the doctor making an incision, pulling the abdominal skin tighter, cutting away the excess, then suturing the newly positioned skin in to place, is essentially strictly cosmetic. But a tummy tuck also involves tightening lax abdominal muscles. In addition to providing sculpted contours when not hidden under a layer of excess tissue and fat, tight muscles help with posture, holding the spine in a stable, upright position. Muscles that have spread apart and been weakened by pregnancy or large weight gain or fluctuations can lead to an excessively curved spine in the lower back, a condition known as lordosis. Patients who’ve exhibited this report lower back pain in addition to poor posture. The procedure to correct this is known as diastasis, but is rarely performed as a standalone surgery. As a part of a tummy tuck, it can be quite effective in improving posture and relieving the associated discomfort.
Weakened abdominal muscles can also lead to certain types of hernias, some of which can be repaired via a tummy tuck. Since a hernia forms when organs or tissues push and bulge through a structural wall incapable of holding them back, tightening the muscles responsible for keeping the contents of the abdominal cavity in place can help.
The society also reported that a tummy tuck, technically known as an abdominoplasty, can help reduce a bladder control problem sometimes experienced by women who have delivered babies vaginally. Known as Stress Urinary Incontinence, this condition causes involuntary leakage when the sufferer sneezes, coughs, laughs, or exercises. Stress Urinary Incontinence can be treated non-surgically, but sometimes that method isn’t enough to fix the problem. The doctor performing a tummy tuck can use soft tissue to construct a small barrier that lessens the severity of the incontinence.
Another benefit is not medical in nature in the strictest sense, but can help improve a patient’s health nonetheless. The fat removed during a tummy tuck is minimal, typically no more than 10 pounds, so patients considering the surgery should be close to their ideal weight. Preparing for a tummy tuck may involve diet, exercise, or other medically proven means of safely and effectively losing excess weight, which helps reduce all sorts of weight-related health complications.
Following a tummy tuck, many patients are inspired by their new appearance to make significant life changes to ensure that they stay both healthy and sleek. Dr. Hugo sees people who’ve chosen a tummy tuck in Virginia Beach go on to maintain a stable weight and live healthier lifestyles.
Remember, though, that a tummy tuck is intended to be an aesthetic procedure, so patients considering the surgery should approach it for cosmetic reasons and discuss all health-related decisions with their primary physician.
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
To learn more about the popular tummy tuck, including its aesthetic and potential health benefits, call Dr. Ben Hugo’s Virginia Beach practice, Ben Hugo Plastic Surgery, at (757) 496-4801 or make contact online.