Tuck Your Tummy, Not Your Sheets

If you’re over 35, odds are you have at least some degree of a tummy pooch. It’s irritating, and it makes us self-conscious when out on our beautiful Naples beaches.
Sometimes a pooch is a result of having the skin and muscles of the area stretched for too long during pregnancy. Sometimes a person has put on and then lost a good deal of weight, affecting those same muscles and skin. Plus, simple aging creates a pooch as our tissues slacken.
And even if you do as many crunches every day as Gary Player, the pooch isn’t going away because that sagging skin and separated muscles just won’t play.
That’s when a tummy tuck with Dr. Turk can bid a fond farewell to the pooch.
Tuck is not liposuction
Because tummy tucks and liposuction often are targeting the same area of the body, people can confuse the two procedures. But the two procedures address very different problems. Liposuction only removes pockets of fat. This is perfect if you are still relatively young and your stomach bulge is due to fat pockets that just don’t seem to go away. Liposuction works well if your skin still has good elasticity in the area and if your muscles are still taut. If this is the case, liposuction will effectively slim your contour, but liposuction does nothing for sagging skin.
If you have sagging, loose skin and if your underlying muscles have been stretched or separated by pregnancy or gaining and losing a large amount of weight, a tummy tuck is the answer. A tummy tuck will remove pockets of fat, but its main goal is to remove excess loose skin and tighten and reposition the underlying stretched muscles. That’s why a tummy tuck requires months of recovery versus liposuction’s days of recovery — a tummy tuck is much more involved surgically.
How is a tummy tuck done?
For a full tummy tuck, Dr. Turk makes two incisions. One incision usually runs from hipbone to hipbone at the bikini line. The second incision is made at the belly button. The length of the first, longer incision can vary depending on just how much sagging skin needs to be addressed. The incision can run past the hipbones around to the lower back if the flanks and lower back also have serious sagging. In your consultation, Dr. Turk will discuss the anticipated length of this incision. The second incision at the belly button is much shorter.
Next, the skin is separated from the abdominal muscles. Dr. Turk pulls these muscles together and stitches them into place for a firmer, narrower waist. Next, he takes the skin flap and stretches it downward over the newly tightened muscles. Excess skin is trimmed, and the navel repositioned in many cases.
Tummy tuck recovery
You’ll need to wear compression garments for at least two weeks to reduce swelling and help the body adapt to its new contour. Recovery times will last up to a few months, due to the incision locations and the muscle repositioning. Heavy lifting and exercise need to be avoided for at least six weeks.
Want to punt the stomach pooch? Call Dr. Turk at 239-348-4357 and set up a consultation for a tummy tuck.


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