Skip to navigation Skip to Content

Tummy tuck

​The tummy tuck procedure removes excess fat and skin from the abdominal area.

Muscles are tightened to improve the contour of the area.

Marshfield Clinic’s expert Plastic Surgeons can help you look your best using the most advanced techniques and procedures.

What is a tummy tuck?

Abdominoplasty, or "tummy tuck" as it is commonly known, is a procedure that contours the abdominal area.

With this procedure, the surgeon makes a long incision from one side of the hipbone to the other.

Excess fat and skin are surgically removed from the middle and lower abdomen, and the muscles of the abdomen wall are tightened with sutures.

Possible complications associated with abdominoplasty

Possible complications associated with abdominoplasty may include:

  • Significant scarring. If the incision area does not heal properly, there is a chance of poor quality scar. This can often be treated by a second operation.

  • Blood clots and infection. As in any surgery, there is a risk of bleeding, infection, blood clots, or reaction to the anesthesia.

Who are candidates for tummy tuck?

The best candidates for abdominoplasty are men or women who are in good physical condition, but are bothered by large fat deposits or loose abdominal skin that does not respond to diet or exercise.

People who intend to lose weight, and women who plan future pregnancies, should postpone the surgery.

About the procedure

Although each procedure varies, tummy tuck surgeries generally cover the following considerations:

Location options may include:

  • Surgeon's office-based surgical facility

  • Outpatient surgery center

  • Hospital outpatient

  • Hospital inpatient

Anesthetic options may include:

  • Local anesthesia and intravenous sedation 

  • General anesthesia

Average length of procedure:

  • Complete abdominoplasty usually takes several hours, depending on the extent of work required.

Some possible short-term side effects of surgery:

  • Abdomen is swollen

  • Abdomen is painful

Final results:

  • Healing is a slow and gradual process. It may take weeks or months to reach a full recovery.

  • Scars may appear to get worse during the first 3 to 6 months as they heal. It may take up to a year for scars to flatten out and lighten in color, although they may never completely disappear.

Request Appointment

Contact us for care

If this is a medical emergency, call 911.

Call: 1-866-520-2510

(Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. - 5 p.m.)

breast reconstruction

Breast reconstruction: Is timing important?

The American Society of Plastic Surgeons notes only 19 percent of women understand timing of their breast cancer treatment and timing of their decision to undergo reconstruction – greatly impacts options and results.

In this article, Plastic Surgeon Dr. Kathleen M. Meyer, addresses common questions about timing of breast reconstruction surgery.

Learn more...