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Gastric Sleeve Tummy Tuck

Gastric Sleeve Tummy Tuck

The gastric sleeve is a weight loss surgery that is a helpful tool in helping obese adults loses weight safely and securely. Gastric sleeve is becoming more common due to its less invasive laparoscopic surgery techniques. After weight loss surgery, many adults require plastic surgery to help remove excess skin.

Excess skin can be challenging to maintain your hygiene and negatively impact your overall confidence and self-esteem. Having excessive skin does not allow you to represent your current weight loss because you are carrying around the skin of your previous larger weight.

Most obese adults that undergo gastric sleeve have the aftermath of excess skin that cannot disappear without surgical intervention. There are talented and professional plastic surgeons who can perform various surgeries to remove your excess skin.

A standard procedure performed for gastric sleeve patients is the abdominoplasty or tummy tuck. The abdominoplasty removes excess skin around your stomach while tightening your muscles that have loosened due to your larger previous weight.

What is a Tummy Tuck?

Tummy tucks are an invasive cosmetic surgery that improves your stomach's appearance by removing excess fat and skin. This procedure helps improve your stomach muscles and is a rewarding experience for many gastric sleeve patients.

You should be aware that this procedure is rarely covered by insurance because they consider it an elective and not medically relevant surgery. Because of this reality, you will need to fund this procedure through a variety of options financially.

You should expect your excess fat and skin to be removed through a specific technique during an abdominoplasty. The surgical procedure includes cutting and sewing your skin back together after removing excess skin and fat.

Discuss any questions with your surgeon. This is a serious surgery that requires preparation.

What are the Tummy Tuck Surgical Options?

There are a variety of tummy tuck options to choose from. You can either choose a complete abdominoplasty or partial abdominoplasty. Both remove a small or large portion of your skin and fat. The complete abdominoplasty creates a large incision on your stomach to remove the fat and skin around your abdomen. This procedure is extensive and can lead to the creation of a new belly button.

A partial abdominoplasty creates a much smaller incision that needs less modification to your stomach area. Your belly button may not need to be recreated with this procedure. This procedure also removes any of your loose skin from the upper part of your stomach. Other partial abdominoplasty surgeries only remove fat and skin from your lower abdominal area.

A partial and complete tummy tuck requires you to have general anesthesia because of the significant surgery element involved.

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Tummy Tuck Health Risks

There are health risks with any surgery, which also applies to the tummy tuck cosmetic surgery.

If you are at high risk for surgical complications, you will not be recommended to have this surgery. Some health risks include:

  • Wound infection
  • Severe scarring or skin discoloration
  • Unhappy with skin appearance
  • Loose skin
  • Numbness or pain from surgery

All of the listed chronic health conditions are a concern for any surgeon because your health will be at risk with any of these illnesses. You run the risk of obtaining an infection through surgery, which will be difficult to manage if you are already struggling with other health issues.

Another health consideration you need to be aware of is if you are planning to be pregnant or are going to experience is a significant shift in your weight. Either of these life changes affects your ability to have a tummy tuck successfully. Because of weight changes, this surgery is not advised because of your skin, fat, and muscle changes.

After the surgery, you should expect to have a large incision on your stomach. This is the permanent aftermath of receiving an abdominoplasty.

This scar runs along your lower stomach towards your pelvic bone. If this reality is not appealing to you, then you should not have this surgery. The scar is a guaranteed outcome, and you should mentally prepare yourself.

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Purpose of a Tummy Tuck

The tummy tuck has many health advantages, but the main reason is for aesthetic reasons for many post-bariatric patients. Although your body will enjoy losing your excess skin and fat, you will have improved confidence and self-esteem.

Another main reason gastric sleeve patients embark on the plastic surgery route is the lack of tone and muscles your body has after losing substantial weight. Your skin loses its elasticity from being obese for a large amount of time, and the only solution is surgical intervention.

Most gastric sleeve patients believe that their overall quality of life improves dramatically after a tummy tuck because you are now recognizing and accepting your physical appearance and all of its changes.

Choosing to have an abdominoplasty is not an easy decision to make. It is both financially and physically taxing. You need to consider all of your options and whether you are ready for this physical change and commitment.

You are in control of your surgical choices. Be your best advocate for your well-being.

My Tummy Tuck Experience

I have not had my plastic surgery on my gastric sleeve. I am currently saving up for the large investment that is needed for my abdominoplasty. You do need to understand that insurance is a complicated process that requires many hoops to jump through. I was unable to receive any aid, which was a disappointment.

I currently suffer from excessive skin and fat as a result of my gastric sleeve surgery. I was a morbidly obese bariatric patient who has lost a significant amount of weight. I have maintained my current healthy weight for the past year, a requirement for plastic surgery. They do not want you to lose or gain to be considered for surgery. You need to have a minimum of six months of consistent weight stability.

The plastic surgeon I am using experiences working with bariatric patients and his surgical recommendation for me is a fleur-de-lis abdominoplasty. This is an alternative abdominoplasty surgery that uses a vertical and horizontal incision to remove my stomach's excess fat and skin. I carried most of my excessive weight around my stomach, so this is the best option.

My recommendation is to do your research and receive many opinions on what is best for your health and how best to improve your physical condition. The more information you have about your health, the better and safer outcome you will have. Best of luck on your journey.

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Kelsey Renae Schulze


Kelsey is a post-op bariatric patient who had sleeve surgery in 2018. She is a writer, focusing on a variety of topics given her background in legal studies and criminal justice.