How the Tummy Tuck has Improved Over the Decades

How the Tummy Tuck has Improved Over the Decades

The tummy tuck, or abdominoplasty, is now a very popular cosmetic procedure in the United States. However, did you know that its origins began in wound repair? Over time the tummy tuck procedure has evolved and changed into what it is now. Read on to learn more about the history of this procedure, and how it can benefit modern patients today!

What Exactly is a Tummy Tuck?

The tummy tuck is a cosmetic procedure performed to eliminate loose skin around the abdomen following weight fluctuations, pregnancy, or genetics. There are three main types of tummy tucks, including the mini tummy tuck, which is performed for patients who have a smaller amount of skin that needs to be removed, the traditional tummy tuck, which removes skin along the entire length of the abdomen, and an extended tummy tuck, which also includes removing excess skin around the lower back and hips.

The First Tummy Tucks

Did you know that tummy tucks were first performed in the early 1800s? The main goal of the procedure then was to cover open wounds, and might even leave the individual without a belly button! Thankfully, surgeons in the early 1900s discovered a technique to preserve the appearance of the belly button during a tummy tuck. However, this procedure was still primarily performed to treat wounds and was even used to treat soldiers during World War I.

Changes in the Tummy Tuck Procedure

During the 1970s and 1980s, surgeons began to perform tummy tucks to treat umbilical hernias, which occur when part of the intestine bulges through the opening in the abdominal muscles, resulting in a bulging belly. Through this procedure, surgeons realized that the tummy tuck could result in a smoother, tighter abdominal appearance.

Modern Tummy Tucks

Today, tummy tucks are often used as a cosmetic procedure to correct the appearance of excess, sagging skin on the abdomen. Surgeons have now perfected tummy tuck techniques for optimal results, and have also found ways to reduce recovery and healing time. There is now the option of the drain-free tummy tuck, which eliminates the need for post-surgical drains by using a layered suturing technique. This results in a quicker recovery and a less visible scar. The tummy tuck procedure can also be paired with other procedures such as the mommy makeover, which involves a number of cosmetic procedures to help women achieve a rejuvenated appearance following pregnancy.

Overall, the tummy tuck procedure has changed a lot since it was first invented. Today, patients can customize their tummy tuck procedure to help meet their unique aesthetical goals.

Contact Us Today

Are you interested in learning more about the tummy tuck procedure and how it can benefit you? If so, contact Allegany Plastic Surgery in Cumberland, MD today to schedule a consultation appointment with board-certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Carpenter.

Tackling Common Tummy Tuck Myths

Despite the popularity of the tummy tuck, it can be difficult for first-time patients to navigate the world of information and misinformation available. There can be a lot of myths and misunderstandings about tummy tucks and plastic surgery in general, meaning it’s extremely important to gather the right facts before you opt for surgery. Although your board certified plastic surgeon is the best authority on your unique procedure, you’ll need to do your research before your consultation. Here are some common myths you’ll find about tummy tucks and what it’ll mean for your results with Dr. Carpenter.

Myth 1: Tummy tucks are one-size-fits-all procedures

The reality is that tummy tucks are as unique as the patients who undergo them. Your plastic surgeon will carefully evaluate your goals and anatomy to create the best possible surgical plan for you rather than using any single technique or approach. for this reason, it’s important to choose a plastic surgeon with experience and expertise in tummy tuck procedures so that they’re well-versed in the different tummy tuck methods and will ensure your results are natural and flattering.

Myth 2: Diet and exercise can get the same results as a tummy tuck

The reality is that tummy tucks address issues that exercise or dieting can’t fix. Even though eating well and exercising can help you lose weight, they can’t eliminate stretched skin and muscles caused by pregnancy or weight loss. The tummy tuck can even come with medical benefits to reduce symptoms that come with stretched muscles like back pain and incontinence. This means that the tummy tuck can be an integral part of recovering from pregnancy and significant weight loss.

Myth 3: Tummy tucks are an excellent way to initiate weight loss

The tummy tuck is not a weight-loss procedure. Rather, it can help put the finishing touches on your new body after you lose weight. This is because significant changes in your body like weight gain or loss can affect your results. Most plastic surgeons advocate that you be at a stable weight for at least a few months before considering a tummy tuck for best results.

Schedule a Consultation

The tummy tuck is one of the best ways to transform your stomach and enjoy a flatter, more contoured figure. To meet with our board certified plastic surgeon and learn more about your options, we invite you to contact our Allegany office by calling or filling out our online form.

Mini, Traditional or Extended: Which Tummy Tuck is Best for Me?

You may have heard of the tummy tuck procedure, but it might surprise you to hear that there are different types of tummy tucks. Each is suited to a different goal. Dr. Carpenter can give you the best idea of what procedure would be best for you and your goals. As you schedule your consultation, you should know about your options.

Mini Tummy Tuck

This tummy tuck is the least invasive and generally produces the least dramatic results. “Mini” tummy tuck usually involves a combination of liposuction of the upper and central abdomen and a conservative removal of loose skin in the lower abdomen. It can be a great option for patients who are looking for only a minor adjustment and a little skin removed from the area below the belly button. This technique does not include  tightening the abdominal muscles. Patients return to usual activities in a few days. If you’re looking for a subtle improvement and minimal downtime, a mini tummy tuck might be your best option.

Traditional Tummy Tuck

As the name implies, this is the most common type of tummy tuck and produces a great balance of results and downtime. This tummy tuck is most beneficial in postpartum women because surgical tightening of the abdominal muscles (which become stretched out by pregnancy) is performed. Usually all the excess skin and fatty tissue below the belly button is removed, and the upper abdominal skin is flattened and tightened. Stretch marks below the belly button are removed with the skin and fat. Return to driving and normal daily activities is usually two weeks, although it may 4-6 weeks to return to vigorous exercise or heavy lifting.

Extended Tummy Tuck

This technique addresses the abdomen and flanks, or “love handle” areas if the lower abdominal roll extends around almost to the back. This is most common in massive weight loss patients. A vertical incision may be used as well as an extended horizontal incision, resulting in a comprehensive surgical solution for excess skin and fat all around the lower body and flanks. As in traditional tummy tuck, the abdominal muscles are tightened as well.  An extended tummy tuck downtime is similar to traditional tummy tuck. It can produce dramatic results if you’re looking for a complete abdominal and flank rejuvenation.

Belt lipectomy

As the name implies, Belt Lipectomy is a 360 degree removal of excess fat and skin from the lower body, basically combining a lower body lift with the extended abdominoplasty.  This improves the contour of the buttock and lateral thighs (also called a lower body lift) and the  flanks and abdomen. Patients who have experienced massive weight loss are the most common candidates. Recovery time may be slightly longer than  abdominoplasty, but the results can be dramatic!

During your consultation, Dr. Carpenter can assess your body and recommend the best procedure for you and your intended goals. To schedule your consultation, contact our office in Cumberland or fill out our form online!

Choices in Breast Augmentation

If you’ve decided to make the first steps towards your breast augmentation consultation, then you’re not alone. Breast augmentation is consistently the number one plastic surgery procedure from year to year, and many women recognize that this procedure can produce confidence-boosting results. At  your consultation, there are a few things you should be ready to discuss and consider with your plastic surgeon.

What Type of Implant Do I Want?

Despite the wide selection of implants that are now on the market, the choice generally remains pretty simple— implants are generally either saline-filled or silicone-filled. These each have different pros and cons, and other questions like your placement, size, or preferred profile might sway your decision one way or another. Your plastic surgeon can help you determine this, as well as what size will get you the best balance between projection and comfort. Other factors to consider can include the shape of the implant (round or pear-shaped) and surface of the implant (smooth or textured). If it seems overwhelming, your plastic surgeon can guide you to the right type if you have a strong sense of what you want your results to look and feel like.

Where Do I Want Them?

This might seem like a strange question but implants can be placed differently within the breast area for different results. Generally, the implants can be placed on top of the pectoral muscle (but within the pocket of breast tissue) or be placed underneath the pectoral muscle. Where the implant sits on the chest wall will affect the contour and shape of the breast, and your recovery. Your plastic surgeon will make a recommendation on placement based on your implant type and personal anatomy.

How Do I Want Them Placed?

The most common incision for silicone implants is the Inframmary incision (below the breast fold). Depending on your  wishes, anatomy, size of the implant and whether  you’re undergoing an additional procedure at the same time, other incisions may be used, such as periareolar, breast lift incisions and axillary (armpit) incisions.  Your plastic surgeon can take into account all these factors when making this decision.

It can seem overwhelming when trying to navigate the wealth of information available on breast augmentation, but the best person to speak to about your questions is your plastic surgeon who can guide your decision-making process. Your consultation can take some time as you discuss these options and what they mean, but these are important decisions. Contact Allegany Plastic Surgery to begin planning your breast augmentation with Dr. Carpenter, who is a board certified plastic surgeon with many years of experience performing breast augmentations.

Your Liposuction Options

Liposuction can be a great choice for slimming down and contouring your new body, but did you know you have options? Traditional liposuction is still one of the top plastic surgery procedures being performed, but liposuction techniques have come a long way, and you might find that laser alternatives better suit your goals and expectations. Here are some more options to consider while you plan your liposuction consultation.

Traditional Liposuction

Chances are, you know someone who has undergone liposuction— or you have at least heard about it before. Liposuction is still one of the most popular Cumberland plastic surgery procedures because it’s effective and well-tested within the plastic surgery community. Although non-invasive options for fat reduction are more available in the marketplace, the results of these procedures are still far inferior to liposuction. Liposuction is also a great option for removing fat for fat transfer, and is often combined with other procedures like tummy tuck. Liposuction can produce life-changing results.

SmartLipo Triplex

Laser enhanced liposuction (Smartlipo) offers several advantages over traditional liposuction. The laser technology can help melt the fatty tissue, so it’s more easily removed, which can result in less bruising and trauma to the surrounding tissues. This can also mean less pain as you heal and comes with the benefit of skin tightening due to the heat from the laser jumpstarting your body’s collagen production. This technique can be especially effective on areas with higher fat volume, like the stomach and lower body, or where the fat is fibrous, like “love handles’’ and gynecomastia tissue in males, and upper back and buttock fat in women.

Precision Tx

As the name implies, this precise laser liposuction method is effective on areas of small fat volume, like the chin, arms, thighs, knees, and ankles. Like SmartLipo, this technique includes skin tightening, but instead directly heats the bottom layers of the skin so that healing and tightening is faster and more effective. This can be especially effective for treating areas that are prone to sagging and loosening of the skin— like upper inner arms and inner thighs, and may help avoid an excisional  procedure.

The best way to determine the best liposuction procedure for you is through a consultation with your plastic surgeon. Contact Allegany Plastic Surgery to schedule an appointment with board certified plastic surgeon Dr. Carpenter, who can discuss your liposuction treatment options and create your unique treatment plan.

Recover in Time for the Holidays with One of These Procedures

It might be too late to start planning a bigger surgery like a breast augmentation or tummy tuck if you want to recover in time for the holidays, but there are plenty of nonsurgical treatments that can give you effective results! Some of our most popular nonsurgical options include:


A SAFE lift or, suture assisted facial elevation, is like a less invasive facelift! Using techniques such as liposuction, conservative skin excision, and suspension sutures, this procedure can treat mild to moderate sagging in the face. Because the skin is not lifted off of the tissue like it is in a traditional facelift, the recovery is much quicker with less discomfort. Most patients can return to normal activity within one to two days with a full recovery time of five to seven days.


If you want to improve the appearance of lines and wrinkles without an invasive surgery, you might consider Botox. Botox is an injectable treatment that temporarily limits muscle contractions that are causing wrinkles. The treatment process only takes about ten minutes and can give effective, lasting results after just one session.

Cellulaze Cellulite Treatment

Virtually all women report having some degree of cellulite. Many individuals make the mistake of thinking cellulite is a result of excess fat, however, cellulite is actually a structural problem with the tissue beneath the skin. Cellulaze targets cellulite at the source using laser energy. The energy is delivered to the dermis to produce stronger skin and increase elasticity. After treatment with Cellulaze, you might experience some mild symptoms like bruising and swelling, but you will be able to return to all normal activity within a day or two. Get the result you want in time for the holidays with one of these treatments! To schedule an appointment and find out what you are a candidate for, contact our office today.

Repair your Skin with Chemical Peels

After a long summer in the sun, your skin will often show some signs of wear or damage. Now that the weather is growing cooler and your time in the sun will be reduced, this is the perfect time to consider chemical peels to help you achieve a clearer, more youthful complexion.

Chemical Peels

Here at Allegany Plastic Surgery, we offer two types of chemical peels: ZO 3-Step Peel and the controlled depth chemical. Chemical peels are great for the reversing of skin aging and sun damage. The acids in the chemical peels increase cell turnover in the skin, revealing a fresher complexion.

ZO 3-Step Peel

This peel is a simple peel that can be used for unwanted pigmentation and minor skin aging. This peel may be perfect for the younger patient or someone with a more sensitive skin type. Like most peels, your skin care practitioner will be able to customize your treatment to your skin by adjusting the application time before the solution is neutralized.

Controlled Depth Chemical Peel

The Controlled Depth Chemical Peel is medium depth peel that addresses both the epidermis and dermis. This peel is more advanced in comparison to superficial peels that do not penetrate any deeper than the epidermis. This type of peel is better for the more dramatic signs of aging due to its potential for a deeper reach. If you are interested in learning more about chemical peels and which one might be best for your skin, contact our skin care experts at Allegany Plastic Surgery!

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