For patients who’ve lost a significant amount of weight, a traditional tummy tuck may not be enough to fully flatten their abdominal region. In this case, Dr Beldholm may recommend a fleur-de-lis abdominoplasty. This type of tummy tuck removes and tightens the skin of the abdomen in both a vertical and horizontal direction. During the procedure, Dr Beldholm may also remove some additional fat and repair abdominal muscles as needed, just like with a standard tummy tuck.
A fleur-de-lis abdominoplasty is designed for individuals who are left with an extreme amount of unwanted skin in their midsection following significant weight loss through either bariatric surgery or diet and exercise. To reap the long-term benefits of the surgery, patients should be committed to a healthy lifestyle. Prior to surgery, patients should also be at a stable weight and be in good health to minimise any potential risks.
How is it done?
Similar to traditional abdominoplasty, the fleur-de-lis tummy tuck involves tightening of the abdominal muscles and repositioning of the navel in order to redrape the skin around the treated site. During the procedure, a vertical incision is made above and below the navel. A second horizontal incision is also made along the waist. After making the incisions, Dr Beldholm will remove any excess skin and fat from the upper and lower abdominal region. The removal of the excess skin following the two separate incisions often results in an upside down “T-shaped” scar for patients. The scar generally fades over time. To assist with the healing process, patients will be required to wear compression garments for several weeks following surgery.
What are the benefits?
Some of the benefits include:
- A more narrow waist and hips
- Improved body contour
- A significantly flatter abdomen
- Elimination of loose, hanging skin
- Ability to fit into clothes more easily
- Improved mobility
What is the recovery?
Each patient’s recovery is unique, however, most can expect to take anywhere from 2-4 weeks off from work to recover. Immediately following surgery, Dr Beldholm encourages patients to spend the first few weeks taking it easy and solely focus on healing. This means avoiding anything that may slow recovery such as: heavy lifting, doing chores, exercising, playing sports, etc. Although patients can still take showers, a sponge bath may be easier during the first few days following surgery. Most patients can resume non-strenuous activities a few weeks after the procedure.
What are the risks?
Performing a fleur-de-lis tummy tuck has proven to be a safe and effective procedure for massive weight-loss patients. In fact, according to one medical study, the potential complication rates are comparable to those of traditional abdominoplasty techniques. As with all surgeries, of course, patients may experience some unwanted side effects, including but not limited to: infection, scarring, heavy bleeding, prolonged pain, difficult recovery, nerve damage, etc.