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Just what is involved with a tummy tuck? 

A tummy tuck, or ‘abdominoplasty’, is cosmetic surgery to improve the shape of the tummy area (abdomen).

It can involve removing fat and excess loose skin and tightening the abdominal muscles.

The aim is to remove excess tummy skin that can’t be removed through exercise – for example, after losing a lot of weight or after pregnancy. But it’s not a quick fix for losing weight.

An abdominoplasty is regarded cosmetic surgery, so not normally available on the NHS.

If you’re thinking of going ahead, make sure you’re aware of the cost and the fact that it’s major surgery, with risks to consider. Take time to reflect on your decision.

It costs about £4,500 to £6,000 to have an abdomino-plasty in the UK, plus the cost of any consultations or follow-up care that may not be included in the price.

Where do I go?

There are two types of tummy tuck, and both are usually carried out under a general anaesthetic.

A partial tummy tuck involves making a large incision (cut) across the lower tummy, separating the skin from the abdominal wall below the tummy button, removing excess fat, cutting away excess skin and thenpulling together the remaining skin and stitching it in place.

A full tummy tuck involves making a large incision across the lower tummy, from hip to hip, just above the pubic area,

making a second incision to free the belly button from the tissue that surrounds it, separating the skin from the abdominal wall, realigning the abdominal muscles, removing excess fat and skin, cutting a new hole for the belly button, and stitching this back in place and the pulling together the remaining skin and stitching it in place

The operation can take between two and five hours. Most people need to stay in hospital for a few nights.

A tummy tuck may be quite painful, although pain relief would be provided.