Men with persistent "too much flab" or excess skin on the abdomen that does not go away with diet and exercise may require abdominoplasty surgery (a “tummy tuck”).
This type of surgery allows you to:
- flatten the abdomen
- remove fat
- remove excess skin
- tighten the muscles of the abdominal wall that have relaxed
With abdominoplasty for men, the shape and outline of the abdomen can be significantly improved.
Who are the best candidates for a male abdominoplasty?
Abdominoplasty can be suitable for men who are in good health, have realistic expectations and a good psycho-physical balance.
Abdominoplasty is also an option for men who were obese and still have fat deposits with or without sagging skin on their abdomen, which do not go away with diet and exercise.
Who should not consider a male abdominoplasty?
Abdominoplasty should be the last choice after trying everything else.
This surgery is not an alternative to weight loss.
You should also consider that there will be post-op scarring. The scars, depending on the surgery option you undergo, will be significant and obvious.
Over time, like all scars, they will fade and can easily be covered by clothing, but you should discuss this with your surgeon before surgery.
How to prepare for male abdominoplasty
The first step is to choose a plastic surgeon.
During the consultation we will talk about the objectives, expectations and options available, which are:
- Complete abdominoplasty. In this type of surgery the surgeon will cut the abdomen, skin, tissue and muscles if necessary. The surgery involves moving the navel, and it may be necessary to wear a drain under the skin for a couple of days.
- Partial abdominoplasty or mini-abdominoplasty. Mini-abdominoplasty is performed on people whose fat deposits are below the navel. During this procedure, the surgeon does not move the navel, the duration of the procedure is 2 hours, depending on the case.
Before undergoing surgery:
- If you smoke, the doctor will ask you to stop smoking at least 2 weeks before surgery until 2 weeks after surgery. Quitting smoking is essential to reducing the risk of complications and not slowing down the healing process.
- You should not start a drastic diet. Eat well and in a balanced way, with full meals. A healthy diet can help heal better.
- Inform your doctor about:
- prescription medications you've taken or are taking
- whether you are using medicinal herbs
- whether you are taking any supplements
The surgeon may prohibit the taking of some medications for a certain time, before and after surgery.
- Plan your stay at home in advance, because you will need:
- Ice packs
- Comfortable clothes
- Shower and chair for the bathroom
- Someone to drive the car home from the clinic after the operation
- Assistance for at least the first night
- Make a detailed plan of the things that will be needed
How male abdominosplasty surgery is performed
This surgery can take 1 to 5 hours. You may need to stay overnight at the hospital, depending on the case.
The surgery requires general anaesthesia.
Male abdominoplasty: possible complications and risks
Healing is personal, but certain complications can be generalised:
- Pain and swelling in the days after surgery. Your doctor will prescribe painkillers and indicate how to best manage the pain. Pain may last for several weeks or months.
As with any surgery, complications may include:
- Blood clots
- Complications related to the general state of health such as:
- Blood circulation issues
- Heart disease
- Pulmonary diseases
- Liver disease
- Incorrect healing can result in a nasty scar or loss of skin
- Follow-up surgery
- Scars can fade over time, but they will never disappear completely. Your surgeon may recommend some creams or ointments to be used after healing to help alleviate scars.
Speaking of scars, what are the scars like after male abdominoplasty?
The length of the scar will vary depending on the type of surgery:
- Mini-abdominoplasty, scars are very short and not very extensive
- Complete abdominoplasty scars are long and prominent
After several months, these scars will become less visible.
Abdominoplasty improves the appearance of the abdomen, but in return it leaves scars. You should be aware of this fact from the beginning.
Taking care of yourself after male abdominoplasty surgery
Whether it is a complete abdominoplasty or mini-abdominoplasty there is some practical information that is useful for proper healing:
- Bandages: the area where the surgery is performed will be sutured and bandaged. The bandage will be an elastic band that promotes proper healing. It is very important to follow the surgeon's instructions on how to take care of the bandage in the days after the surgery.
- The surgeon will give instructions on how to sit or lie down to reduce discomfort
- You should limit all strenuous activities for at least 6 weeks
- You may need 1 month off work after surgery to ensure proper recovery
- The doctor will advise what to do or not to do
Back to your daily routine after male abdominoplasty
In general, most people are satisfied with the results after surgery.
But you have to be patient, because the desired results can take time.
Proper nutrition and exercise can help maintain results.