Posts Tagged ‘tummy tuck’

tummy tuck chattanoogaPregnancy is one of the most beautiful miracles of life. Unfortunately, for many mothers, pregnancy imposes some not so beautiful effects on the body including stretch marks, protruding abdominal muscles and sagging skin. Once a new mother has lost all of the “baby weight”, she may be disappointed to see that her stomach no longer looks the way it did before enduring pregnancy.


When diet, cardio and endless abdominal exercises fail to produce the desired results, tummy tuck surgery, also known as abdominoplasty, may be the only solution. During tummy tuck surgery, excess skin is surgically removed and the abdominal muscles may be tightened. Because the loose skin is removed, the appearance of stretch marks can be reduced as well. This is due to the fact that much of the skin exhibiting stretch marks is excised or removed during abdominoplasty surgery.


While this procedure has been proven highly effective for decades, tummy tuck surgery is a relatively invasive procedure. Before undergoing this elective treatment, here are a few things to consider.


    1. Scars

Although easily concealed, scars will be present at the site of incisions. If you undergo a traditional tummy tuck, incisions are made at the lower abdominals (typically from hipbone to hipbone) and around the belly button. If you are only undergoing a mini tummy tuck, scars will only be present at the lower abdominal area. Although the incision required for each individual is different, belly button scarring is typically inconspicuous and the other incision can be concealed in the skimpiest of bikinis. However, it is a good idea to bring your bikini bottoms with you to your consultation. Many times, wider incisions are necessary due to extensive loose skin and fat deposits. You and your surgeon should be on the same page regarding expectations. Are you willing to gain a scar in order to achieve a flatter, and firmer stomach?


  1. Downtime

Because tummy tuck is a relatively invasive procedure, downtime can definitely be an issue. While it varies from patient to patient, everyday activities should be avoided for a minimum of seven to ten days. If you have a more physical job, then 2-6 weeks of downtime maybe recommended.


Because any lifting should be avoided during recovery, caring for young children may also be a factor unless you have access to extensive childcare. No lifting greater than 10 pounds includes lifting and caring for small children. Once the 6 week mark has been reached, you should be considered fully healed and cleared of any restrictions.


     3. Subsequent Pregnancies

Before committing to the cost, recovery and serious nature of surgical intervention, patients should be done with child bearing. While a tummy tuck will not pose a threat to the health of subsequent pregnancies, patients will most likely need another tummy tuck to keep the desired effect. Unfortunately, prior tummy tuck surgery does not leave patients impervious to further stretch marks and stretched skin. Complete your family, and then consider tummy tuck.


These are just a few factors to contemplate before undergoing tummy tuck surgery. Our board certified surgeons have years of experience with this procedure. Call 423-648-4011 to schedule your private consultation!

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mommy makeover
A few weeks ago, many of us took the time to thank our mothers for all of the contributions made  throughout the years- the sleepless nights, the comforting words and, for many, the domestic drudgery .  Yet a commonly overlooked aspect of motherhood is the havoc pregnancy can wreak on one’s body. We don’t often acknowledge our mothers for the stretch marks, varicose veins, deflated breasts and loose tummies which we inflicted on them while they carried us for nine months during pregnancy.


Truth be told, pregnancy is not kind to the feminine form. Yet, is seems the media camouflages this unfortunate truth by saturating viewers with unrealistic, celebrity stories- perpetuating outrageous accounts of “how (insert celerity name here) returned to her pre-pregnancy figure within 6 weeks of giving birth”. All the more enraging, thanks to photo airbrushing, I have yet to see one of these celebs exhibiting stretch marks or unsightly veins. So, what are “real” mothers to do?


While society can be quite cruel to the average mother, there is a line of defense.  With the exception of stretch marks, advancing technology has provided effective solutions to the many battle scars of pregnancy through the form of breast augmentation, tummy tuck, laser vein therapy and vaginal rejuvenation surgery. Combine more than one of these procedures in a single surgical session and you have what is called a “mommy makeover”.


Mommy makeovers are ideal for busy moms that do not have time to endure multiple surgical sessions and the accompanying recovery time required. Moreover, many cosmetic surgeons offer discounted fees when the patient opts to combine multiple procedures.


Our mothers  may not have been as fortunate as we modern-day mommies as cosmetic surgery has become much more accessible to the general public. Not only is it now more financially feasible, the field of cosmetic surgery itself has continued to grow allowing for more options, greater patient satisfaction, increased safety and improved outcomes.


This is not to say that all mothers should regard their “battle scars” as something shameful- seeking surgical intervention to correct these imperfections. However,  mothers plagued by diminishing self-esteem due to adverse body changes should know that there are solutions…no one should have to wallow in body image depression.


If you are interested in a mommy makeover, call 423-648-4011 and book your complimentary consultation with our Board Certified Surgeons or visit www.advsurgical.com.

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tummy tuck Chattanooga

How is a mini tummy tuck different from a full tummy tuck?

While more traditional tummy tucks address the belly button, lower and upper abdomen, the mini tummy tuck only tightens the lower abdomen. Upon healing from a full tuck, patients will have scarring around the belly button and an additional scar that extends across the lower abdomen, typically extending from hip to hip. A mini abdominoplasty results in a smaller scar only at the lower abdomen and no scar around the navel.

Although mini tucks can be an effective alternative for patients with skin laxity and stretch marks isolated to the lower abdomen, mini tummy tucks cannot correct the upper abdomen and belly button nor can it remove stretch marks present in the upper region of the stomach.

Mini Tummy Tuck Candidates

Ideal candidates for mini tummy tuck surgery are healthy, non-smokers who exhibit loose skin in the lower abdomen not treatable by liposuction alone. Pooching, skin laxity and stretch marks must be limited to the lower abdomen. If the patient exhibits these symptoms on the entire midsection, they may be better suited for a full tummy tuck.

To see if you are a mini tummy tuck candidate, call 423-648-4011 to schedule a complimentary consultation with our Board Certified Cosmetic Surgeons.

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It is a well-known fact that cigarette smoke stains our teeth, prematurely ages our skin and can lead to cancer, but there are other reasons we do not recommend that our cosmetic surgery patients smoke. Smoking has a serious impact on the results of your cosmetic surgery. Consequently, you may have noticed that most candidates for our surgical cosmetic procedures are “non-smokers”. So, how does smoking specifically effect your cosmetic surgery results?

How does smoking affect my cosmetic surgery?

Nicotine (of any kind ex. cigarette, nicotine gum, chewing tobacco) constricts small blood vessels resulting in worse blood flow to skin after surgery. In addition, smoking increases carbon monoxide levels in the blood resulting in less oxygen to the tissues. Following surgery, oxygen is particularly necessary for its healing powers and its ability to fight infection, transport antibiotics and other important medications and help keep skin tissue alive. Below is a list of important studies involving the effects of smoking and cosmetic surgery.

  • Studies have shown that smokers are 12.5 times more likely to develop skin loss with delayed healing in facelift surgery than non-smokers.
  • In one study, smokers having tummy tucks had a 47% chance of developing a wound at the incision site. These types of wounds may result in increased costs and delayed healing because of the need for wound care devices such as a wound V.A.C. Some wounds may take months to heal and may even require skin grafting.
  • Smoking a single cigarette can decrease the blood flow to the thumb by 24%.
  • A research study found that 85.3% of patients that said they quit smoking 2 weeks before surgery in fact kept smoking. Realize that you are taking significant risks by continuing to smoke when you are asked to quit.

Procedures Most Affected by Tobacco & Nicotine

Tummy tucks, facelifts, breast reductions and breast lifts are the top procedures most affected by tobacco and nicotine use. These types of surgeries are unique in that the skin is undermined and as a result the blood supply to the skin in compromised. In healthy non-smoking patients, the risks of wound breakdown and healing is low. However, in smokers, the risks of skin loss, delayed healing and scarring are increased.

The following are pictures showing major wound with skin loss after cosmetic procedures. Smoking increases these problems after surgery!

How do I avoid this?

Studies show that quitting smoking (and all nicotine products) 3-4 weeks before surgery and 3-4 weeks after surgery will decrease the likelihood that you will develop a wound problem. You will still be at a slightly higher risk than a non-smoker.If you need help quitting there are prescription medications that we can prescribe to help you quit.

Smoking Policy at Advanced Surgical Concepts

We REQUIRE that all smokers COMPLETELY QUIT smoking (and any nicotine products) a minimum of 3-4 weeks before surgery and 3-4 weeks after surgery. After this time period, if you wish to resume smoking, that is your choice.

Some procedures do not require that you quit smoking but we still recommend that you quit for optimal healing.

We may request you have a nicotine test….if the test is positive we may refuse doing your surgery.

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Year after year, cosmetic surgery continues to grow in popularity among Americans. According to the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery, the number of cosmetic surgery patients in the US has increased over 197 percent since 1997. Below is a list of some of the most demanded cosmetic procedures last year. We offer all of these procedures in our AAAHC- accredited, surgical facilities.

Breast Lift (Mastopexy)

A breast lift, also known as a Mastopexy, is a surgical procedure intended to position “sagging” breasts higher on the chest. It is a very popular procedure among mothers who have experienced undesirable changes in their breasts after weight fluctuation and breast feeding.

A breast lift is typically a two hour procedure in which an incision is made around the nipple, vertically under the nipple and in the horizontal crease of the breast. Then, the breast tissue is reshaped and excess skin is removed. Before the incisions are closed with sutures, the nipple and areola are repositioned. Following this procedure, scarring at the incision will be present. However, scarring should significantly fade after laser treatment, which we include in the patient’s procedure costs. Scarring also fades with time.

Breast Augmentation with Implants

For added fullness and volume, many patients elect to combine a Mastopexy with breast implants. This provides optimal results for patients who have experienced both volume loss and dropping of lax skin. Breast implants are ideal for increasing the size of the breast, balancing size asymmetry or restoring post-pregnancy volume loss. This outpatient procedure takes only one to two hours to complete. Once an incision is made, a saline or silicone implant is inserted. The incision can be made under the breast, around the nipple, in the armpit or in the belly button.

Cosmetic Eyelid Lift (Blepharoplasty)

Cosmetic eyelid lift surgery is effective in correcting droopy, hooded or puffy eyelids. This procedure continues to gain popularity because the eyes are such a prominent facial feature. Tired or droopy eyes can add years to one’s perceived age. Luckily, Blepharoplasty surgery has been proven to erase years from one’s face.

During an eyelid lift, fat, excess skin and muscle are removed from the upper and lower eyelids. The procedure eliminates the eye’s droopy and puffy appearance and can improve the patient’s vision. In fact, insurance often covers the cost of Blepharoplasty surgery if the patient can prove loss of vision due to droopy eyelids. In many cases, patients combine eyelid lift surgery with brow and face lifts.

Abdominoplasty (Tummy Tuck)

Considered one of the most popular procedure for mommies, a tummy tuck is especially effective for patients who have stretched the abdominal muscles and skin beyond non-surgical repair . During a tummy tuck, the abdominal area is tightened and the excess skin covering the abdominals is removed. Before undergoing this procedure, it is important for patients to accept that they will have a horizontal scar at the incision site in the pelvic region (which can often be concealed even in relatively revealing swimwear).


Liposuction is the most commonly performed cosmetic procedure in the United States. This procedure involves the removal of fat from deposits beneath the skin using a hollow stainless steel tube (called a cannula) with the assistance of a powerful vacuum. Liposuction should not be used as a “weight loss” tool but as a means to provide a better contour to those healthy individuals that exercise, eat healthy and have a BMI of 30 or below yet still have “fatty deposits” in trouble areas. Common areas treated by liposuction include upper and lower abdomen, the flanks (love handles), outer and inner thighs, inner knees, arms, “bra rolls”, and under the chin.

If you are interested in any of these procedures, call 423-648-4011 to schedule your private consultation.

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If you have recently lost a significant amount of weight, congratulations! You are most likely experiencing many changes in your body. You probably feel better and can fit into smaller clothing, but may still be unsatisfied with your appearance. After all, weight fluctuation can cause irregular stretching in the skin or tissue that creates bulging and flab in certain areas of the body.

Men and women who experience a rapid deflation of their body due to fat loss typically have relatively poor skin quality. The skin has lost its elastic properties. This lack of elasticity is evident through stretch marks and cellulite (which are classic signs of permanent skin damage). These patients are NOT ideal candidates for liposuction since removing more fat from already damaged and deflated skin makes the sagging skin appear even worse.

For such cases, excisional cosmetic surgery techniques are ideal. The issue is skin and muscular laxity as opposed to excess fat cells. Unfortunately, liposuction is only effective in eliminating excess fatty tissue. However, our practice offers cosmetic surgery procedures that address saggy, deflated skin. Below are some of the most effective procedures for removing the excess skin.

Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty)

According to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons,a tummy tuck (Abdominoplasty) is the fifth most common cosmetic surgery procedure performed in the United States. Individuals interested in a tummy tuck (Abdominoplasty) seek to improve the appearance of a protruding abdomen after a lack of results from traditional methods such as weight loss through dieting and muscle strengthening. By removing excess skin in the mid to lower abdomen and tightening lax skin and muscles below the navel, a tummy tuck contours the body by redefining the abdominal area and promotes the appearance of a narrowed waist line.

Arm Lift (Brachioplasty)

If you are experiencing a case of “bat arms” or “wings”, an arm lift (Brachioplasty)could be the solution for you. An arm lift is a cosmetic surgical procedure that eliminates and tightens loose skin from the arm, giving you a more toned appearance. It is also a great way to combat the effects of gravity, aging and reduced skin elasticity.

Thigh Lift

Sometimes, liposuction alone can take care of unsightly thighs, but if extremely loose skin exists, a thigh lift may be the only solution. The most common type of thigh lift is a medial lift. A medial lift eliminates fatty tissue and tightens loose skin of the inner thigh. The incision is made at the inner crease of the leg and is closed by dis-solvable sutures. Some patients elect to combine this procedure with a butt lift. The combination of a thigh lift and butt lift is known as a spiral lift. A spiral lift is ideal for patients with loose skin on the inner thighs, sagging skin on the buttocks and a poorly defined gluteal crease.

All of these cosmetic “lifts” and “tucks” require downtime and will involve scarring. As with any surgery,certain risks are involved and can be discussed during your consult with your cosmetic surgeon or plastic surgeon.

Call 423-648-4011 to schedule your skin removal consult.

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Cosmetic surgery is a sub-specialty that uniquely restricts itself to the enhancement of appearance through surgical and medical techniques. It is specifically concerned with maintaining normal appearance, restoring it, or enhancing it toward some aesthetic ideal for all areas of the body. Cosmetic surgery involves a multidisciplinary and comprehensive approach from a variety of disciplines including board-certified dermatologists, general surgeons, maxillofacial surgeons, ophthalmologists, ENT’s, plastic surgeons and physicians from other fields. All of these disciplines have contributed to the vital growth of cosmetic surgery.

Choosing a surgeon for cosmetic procedures

Choosing a doctor for any healthcare need is an important decision. Patients should choose a healthcare provider based on his or her training, education, experience and demonstrated practice history. It is the American Medical Association’s policy that individual character, training, experience and judgment are the criteria for granting privileges for surgical procedures, and that physicians representing several specialties can and should be permitted to perform the same procedures if they meet criteria for the specific procedure.

With an expanding number of consumers anxious to undergo cosmetic surgery, it is imperative that consumers have access to accurate information, the freedom to choose among physicians and that the number of qualified providers is not artificially restricted. Unfortunately, the vast majority of consumers view cosmetic surgery and plastic surgery as one and the same. Consumers’ misapprehension in this regard has them relying on incomplete and false information when choosing a physician to perform cosmetic surgery procedures.

Plastic Surgery is not Cosmetic Surgery

When considering cosmetic surgery, people are almost universally unaware of the difference between cosmetic surgery and plastic surgery. For this reason, they are easily misled to believe that board certification in plastic surgery evidences a physician’s competence to perform cosmetic surgery. It does not.

A recent national cosmetic surgery training survey sent to the 89 active US plastic surgery programs in regard to resident preparedness in aesthetics was quite revealing. The information published in the Journal of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery revealed significant differences in opinions between program directors and finishing senior plastic surgery residents. Although 51 percent of residents felt prepared to integrate cosmetic surgery into their practices upon graduation, 36 percent felt further cosmetic training was desirable after completion of plastic surgery residency. Confidence levels were specifically low in rhinoplasty, face lifts, endoscopic procedures and body contouring techniques. Experience with skin resurfacing, facial fillers and botulinum toxin type A were listed as other areas of concern.

On a positive note, breast augmentation, breast reduction and abdominoplasty were most frequently performed by plastic surgery residents during training with the highest resident comfort levels. On the basis of these results, Dr. Colin Morrison, et al suggested changes in cosmetic surgery training during plastic surgery residency.

As there are very few dedicated Cosmetic Surgery Fellowships, cosmetic surgery is primarily learned during post residency through ongoing continuing education, training and experience. The most recent advances in cosmetic surgery have appeared in the last seven years- Botox, facial fillers, advanced laser skin resurfacing and body contouring. If your surgeon completed residency more than seven years ago and offers advanced cosmetic surgery procedures, he or she learned these techniques at post graduate training courses offered to physician and surgeons of all specialties.

Ultimately the decision is yours..so only can make the the right choice for your surgical procedures, whether elective for cosmetic reasons or for medical reasons. Choose well!

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office based cosmetic surgery in Chattanooga, TennesseeSurgeons are doing more than just checkups in their offices these days. Advances in medical technology have made it possible for physicians to perform more advanced and more complex surgical procedures in their offices. Whether it is vein surgery, skin cancer excisions, tummy-tuck, breast augmentation, facelift or a complex biopsy, these procedures can be completed in an office-based surgery suite. Since most patients want to avoid an overnight hospital stay after surgery, ambulatory surgical procedures have become very popular. That’s why almost one-half of all surgeries are now being done in an outpatient facility, either connected to a hospital or in a separate surgical center.

More recently, though, there has been a growing trend for surgery to be done right in a doctor’s office. Office-based surgery can offer the convenience of having a procedure done in a more comfortable setting with a quick return home. Charges associated with ambulatory surgery are less than fees charged at a large hospital. Charges associated with ambulatory surgery completed in an office setting are substantially lower.

Anesthetic Techniques in Office-based Surgery

The same anesthetic techniques used in hospitals and ambulatory surgical centers are used in office-based surgery. They include:

Local anesthesia, which provides numbness to a small area of the body, such as a dermatologist might use to numb the skin around a mole before removing it.

Monitored anesthesia (sedation/analgesia), during which a patient receives medications that relieve pain and make the patient drowsy. During surgery, the patient’s vital signs, including heart rate, blood pressure and oxygen level, will be watched closely in order to avoid sudden changes or complications.

Regional anesthesia, which can include spinal blocks, epidural blocks or extremity blocks. Spinal and epidural blocks involve interrupting sensation from the legs or abdomen by injecting local anesthetic medication in or near the spinal canal. Other blocks can be performed for surgery on your extremities, or limbs, blocking sensations from the arm or leg.

General anesthesia, which involves the total loss of consciousness, pain sensation and protective airway responses.

From the simple removal of a mole to breast augmentation/reduction, liposuction, hernia repairs or knee arthroscopies, a rapidly growing number of surgeries are being performed in doctors’ offices rather than in hospitals or ambulatory surgical centers. More complex procedures are likely to become common in the near future.

At last review in 2005, an estimated 10 million procedures were performed annually in doctors’ offices – twice the number of office-based surgeries performed in 1995. Today, about one out of 10 surgeries is performed in a doctor’s office.

In considering your options when surgery is advised, here are some items that you should consider before undergoing surgery in a doctor’s office. Ideally, anesthesia during larger surgical cases should be delivered or supervised by a person extensively trained in anesthesia techniques, like a Certified Nurse Anesthetist or Anesthesiologist.

Anesthesia needs are determined by your medical condition as well as by the type of operation you will have completed. A doctor’s office should have the necessary emergency drugs, equipment and procedures in place to care for you in the rare event of a life-threatening complication. Many states require licensing or accreditation by a recognized agency. These agencies regularly inspect such offices to ensure that minimum standards of patient care and safety are met. Ask your doctor if their surgical office suites have been accredited.

Advanced Surgical Concepts is a fully accredited AAAHC facility.

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