When a tummy tuck patient is close to their ideal, healthy body weight and has managed to keep that weight stable for at least a few months, they are likely ready for their procedure. If you are carrying excess fat on your body and planning to lose it, do it before your surgery. It is a common misconception that tummy tuck surgery or liposuction can be used for dramatic weight loss. The reality is that these procedures are effective for reducing problem spots, deposits of fat & for contouring areas like the waist and abdomen. Intra-abdominal fat which surrounds the internal organs under the abdominal wall is not accessible through abdominoplasty or liposuction procedures. This stubborn and very unhealthy type of fat must be reduced through diet and exercise.
Tummy tuck procedures can help to sculpt and reshape the figure after weight loss and reduce excess skin which is a common problem after weight loss.
From a health and safety standpoint, there is a statistically significant association between increased BMI or body mass index, and increased complications, poor healing, and poor surgical outcomes. There is no magic number which a patient must reach in order to be considered safe for surgery or at their ideal weight, however, BMI will typically need to measure at 30 or less depending on the surgeon. The most ideal weight is when your BMI is 25 or less. For some people that may mean losing 5 pounds and for others, 50. An Aesthetic Surgery Journal medical study found that for cosmetic surgical patients with a morbidly obese BMI measurement, their rate of complication rose to 46% compared with only 3.3% in ideal body weight patients.
The idea that patients should be near their ideal body weight needs to be communicated to the public because body contouring procedures like Tummy Tuck and Liposuction are becoming increasingly common.
Another important factor to consider is that while cosmetic surgery procedures such as tummy tucks can provide permanent results, dramatic changes in weight post-procedure can undo or negatively affect those results. Maintaining a healthy weight and avoiding a calorie increase after surgery is important. In order to protect your investment and maintain results that you are happy with, have a discussion with your chosen plastic surgeon about your weight loss goals and plans so that you can ensure you will not be gaining or losing significant weight after your procedure.
People tend to have a “stable” weight range which can easily be maintained.
Without using extreme starvation diets or unsafe medications, healthy diet and moderate exercise (even post-bariatric surgery) should allow a person to reach a point where weight loss tapers off and weight will plateau. Maintaining a consistent weight for at least a few months before surgery is good. This is typically the time when your plastic surgeon will say you are ready to consider surgical body contouring.
If you need help figuring out where you are in the planning stage of tummy tuck surgery, book an in-person consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon who will examine you, listen to your concerns, and recommend next steps.
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