Previously we went over a number of great reasons to get a tummy tuck, and they focused on the aesthetic, which is why people get tummy tucks, honestly: because they desire a better, younger, tighter looking body. However, there are additional health benefits that can result from a tummy tuck, and you may appreciate them as well as you appreciate your new and improved figure.
Umbilical and Ventral hernia correction - A hernia is “a bulge through an opening of the muscles on the abdomen. The hernia can occur at a past incision site (incisional), above the navel (epigastric), or other weak muscles sites (primarily abdominal).” This happens when abdominal tissue or intestine breaks through the abdominal muscle wall and creates a pocket or sack. It can happen as a result of significant weight loss or a surgery such as a cesarean section or appendectomy which means it’s frequently present in patients who seek tummy tucks for aesthetic reasons. The tightening of abdominal muscles that happens during an abdominoplasty also repairs a hernia.
Back pain relief and better posture - Removing a significant amount of fat around the abdomen can both take pressure off of the spine. The tightening of the abdominal muscles also helps to improve posture which, for people with back problems and back pain, can provide unexpected pain relief. Overall, the tighter core a patient possesses after surgery aids in a number of noticeable ways related to strength and flexibility.
Increased exercise tolerance - Post-surgery, patients who have had a tummy tuck report an increased ability to exercise and often feel freer to pursue their athletic goals because they have leapt over a barrier of self-consciousness about their bodies.
Reduced urinary incontinence - Delivering a baby vaginally can result in Stress Urinary Incontinence (SUI) which most women experience as uncontrollable leaking when they laugh, cough, sneeze, or exercise. Studies have shown that many women (25-60%) report improvement in this after abdominoplasty which can be a very significant side benefit.
Insurance companies consider an abdominoplasty to be a cosmetic procedure, but that doesn’t mean that removing unnecessary fat and skin cannot result in better health and overall outcomes. The above benefits illustrate this well, but when we look better, we feel better, and when we feel better we are more likely to participate in life fully and enjoy it. Whether that means exercising, being with friends, going to the beach, wearing different clothes, or all of the above is entirely up to you!