Benefits of the Drainless Tummy Tuck
Are you hesitating getting a tummy tuck?
It might help you to know that nearly 130,000 tummy tuck procedures were performed in 2017 alone. And the numbers keep rising each year.
This is partially due to the technological advancement of the drainless tummy tuck.
Once upon a time, in the not-too-distant past, recovering from tummy tuck surgery could be a daunting enterprise that required weeks of discomfort and inconvenience.
But that’s not the case anymore.
Doing Away with the Drains
Abdominoplasty – the doctorly term for a tummy tuck – is a surgical procedure that reduces excessive fat and skin around the abdomen and reconstructs the abdominal wall musculature.
In response to this procedure, the body builds up fluid between the newly lifted tissue and the abdominal wall. For many years, drains were the standard solution to rid the body of this fluid.
But they weren’t a great solution.
Patients would wake up from surgery to find they had to manage two or even three drains. These drains could clog or the hoses sometimes crimped. They were also a portal entry for bacteria and patients couldn’t shower with them.
Aside from the sheer inconvenience, they were also difficult to hide behind clothing – making recovery all the more restrictive and awkward.
If that weren’t enough, doctors found that oftentimes, the places where the drains left the skin were often very sore and tender.
Fortunately, there is no longer a need for those cumbersome drains.
Progressive Tension Sutures
Progressive tension sutures make it possible to shower and dress with relative ease after a tummy tuck procedure. Also known as quilting stitches, they enable the patient to completely do away with drainage tubes and dangling drains.
So how do they work?
Well, rather than placing drains in the space beneath the lifted and repositioned tissue, a skilled surgeon advances the skin flaps down toward the incision line to eliminate the space created during the procedure.
This decreases the tension on the final line of closure, which creates a much more aesthetic scar.
Because the sutures are on the inside, they keep the flap held down against the muscular wall – eliminating the need for drains. And all of this means a smoother and faster recovery.
Especially when used in tandem with Exparel.
What Is Exparel?
We’re glad you asked!
As with any surgery, the first three or four days following it will be the most painful.
Until now, narcotics have been the most effective medications for keeping post-surgical pain under control. But the side effects of narcotics are dizziness, drowsiness, constipation and nausea. Then there’s the risk of addiction – which has become epidemic in the U.S.
That’s why responsible plastic surgeons are now using a long-lasting anesthetic drug called Exparel to help to ease some of that pain during early recovery.
Much like getting a shot at the dentist to numb the pain, Exparel blocks the nerves of the abdomen during the procedure.
Exparel is administered at the end of the surgery before the patient is awakened. It can be done prior to closure by the surgeon by direct injection into the nerves behind the muscle, or by the anesthesiologist by way of TAP lock after closure.
When the patient comes out of surgery, much of the abdominal area is numb.
But unlike a dental numbing, Exparel then continues to provide pain control for up to three days. While it doesn’t eliminate the pain during recovery, it greatly reduces (by about 2/3) the amount of narcotics a patient would usually require.
And the fewer narcotics, the better.
Since tummy tucks have become so much more streamlined and recovery is much easier, many people choose to add liposuction.
Adding Liposuction to Your Drainless Tummy Tuck
Why schedule two separate surgeries when you can get it all done at once? One surgery, one recovery period.
The sheer convenience might be enough reason for you to consider this. But having your plastic surgeon get rid of that exercise-resistant fat while eliminating loose skin and repairing tissue is really the biggest benefit of adding liposuction to your tummy tuck.
It’s the ultimate way to maximize your waistline contouring to eliminate love handles and give that hourglass shape.
Boost Your Confidence
Whether you opt for a drainless tummy tuck with or without liposuction, you’ll still get fantastic results.
New advancements in plastic surgery have made recovery so much easier, so why not contact us today to schedule your free consultation?
Getting rid of that excess skin and flab will have you feeling lighter, breezier and just more confident in your own skin.