What Happens If You Gain Weight After a Tummy Tuck?

Woman standing on scale to check for weight gain after tummy tuck

When it comes to body contouring, few procedures are as transformative as tummy tuck surgery. It’s an excellent way to firm and tone the midsection by removing saggy skin and unwanted fat. Once you’ve achieved that flat tummy, though, it’s natural to want to protect those terrific results. Our tummy tuck patients in Washington, DC, often worry: “What happens if I gain weight after a tummy tuck?”

A tummy tuck can sculpt and define the waistline, and the changes can be permanent. In this blog post, we’ll discuss tummy tuck surgery’s relationship to weight gain and how you can make good decisions to maintain your results.

How a Tummy Tuck Works

After pregnancy or significant weight loss, you may develop loose skin and a permanent “belly pooch.” A tummy tuck solves these problems by removing excess skin and giving core muscles the support they need. 

The procedure begins with a hip-to-hip incision that’s placed below the underwear line. A second incision is drawn around the inside of the bellybutton. These incisions are then used to adjust and reposition excess skin. Saggy skin is removed, weakened abdominals are stitched together, and the hips are contoured as needed with liposuction.

Weight Gain After a Tummy Tuck

Although tummy tuck surgery is a body contouring procedure, it is not a replacement for weight loss. It is used to address bulges and loose skin that diet and exercise alone can’t fix. 

Excessive weight gain after a tummy tuck causes muscles to reposition and skin to stretch as fat cells expand and sometimes multiply. If your body shape changes dramatically after surgery, your results could be compromised. For this reason, a tummy tuck should always be paired with an overall healthy lifestyle. Be sure to stay at a stable weight before considering tummy tuck surgery.

How to Maintain Your Tummy Tuck Results

  • Eat healthy foods: You need to stay at a steady weight to preserve your surgical results. Eat a balanced diet with plenty of nutrient-rich foods, and consuming plenty of fruits and vegetables can help you stay at a stable body weight.
  • Exercise regularly: Regular exercise tones and strengthens your muscles and helps you burn off excess calories. Workouts can also give you stronger abdominals and give your core the support it needs. 
  • Finish having children: Although the procedure won’t negatively affect a potential future pregnancy, your tummy tuck results may be compromised as your body stretches and adjusts to accommodate a baby. For the best long-term results, wait to have tummy tuck surgery until you are finished growing your family. 

Tummy tuck surgery paired with a healthy lifestyle can give you beautiful results for years to come. Browse our before-and-after gallery to see real examples from past plastic surgery patients. 

If you’re interested in plastic surgery in the Washington, DC, area, please request a consultation online. You can also contact our practice offices by phone at (703) 560-2850 (Annandale, VA) or (301) 652-7700 (Chevy Chase, MD).

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