Know about Panniculectomy: Surgical Removal of Excess Abdominal Skin

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Know about Panniculectomy: Surgical Removal of Excess Abdominal Skin
Know about Panniculectomy: Surgical Removal of Excess Abdominal Skin

Stomach skin removal surgery or panniculectomy is an operation to remove excess skin of the lower abdomen (panniculus) due to significant weight loss

Unlike tummy tuck or abdominoplasty surgery, panniculectomy does not tighten the abdominal muscles to get a more attractive body appearance. Therefore, this operation is not considered a cosmetic procedure.

Know about Panniculectomy: Surgical Removal of Excess Abdominal Skin - Alodokter

Basically, panniculectomy surgery is an operation that is performed to relieve the symptoms that appear due to dangling abdominal skin, such as irritation and rash.

Nevertheless, removing excess skin can still make your stomach area look flatter. Even if needed, a panniculectomy can also be performed in conjunction with a tummy tuck or other abdominal surgery procedures.

Conditions Treated With Panniculectomy Surgery

After losing a significant amount of weight due to following a weight loss diet or surgery, you may experience excess skin on the abdomen and the skin in this area will become looser.

This condition can make the appearance of the body less attractive. In fact, excess skin often causes a number of skin disorders, such as rashes, irritation, including body odor.

To overcome this, one way that can be done is panniculectomy surgery. You are an ideal candidate for this excess abdominal skin surgery if:

  • You have excess belly fat that causes he alth problems, such as backache, skin rash, or ulcers
  • You don't smoke
  • You are in good he alth
  • You have a stable weight for at least the last 6 months to 1 year
  • You maintain a he althy diet
  • You are physically active

You are not recommended to perform abdominal skin cutting surgery if you have certain medical conditions that are not well controlled, such as diabetes, heart disease, and lung disease. Obesity can also increase the risk of complications after surgery.

Preparation for Excess Abdominal Skin Removal Operation

A few days before surgery, the doctor will ask you to fast and stop taking medicines that can cause bleeding problems, such as aspirin, ibuprofen, and warfarin.

The doctor will also require you to quit smoking, at least 3–6 weeks before surgery. This is because smoking can slow down the recovery process after surgery and increase the risk of serious surgical complications.

Excess Abdominal Skin Removal Surgery Procedure

You will be under general anesthesia so you don't feel any pain during the operation. During surgery, the doctor will make an incision horizontally or vertically in the area between the navel and the genitals. Excess skin and fat will be cut through the incision.

During the operation, a special tube will also be placed under the skin to prevent fluid buildup. After the excess skin and fat is removed, the remaining upper abdominal skin is pulled down and the incision is closed with stitches.

This surgical procedure usually takes between 3-5 hours, depending on how much skin and fat is removed.

After Excess Abdominal Skin Removal Surgery

After the operation, you will be monitored in the recovery room. While you are recovering from the effects of the anesthetic, you may be asked to get up and walk a few steps. Depending on the circumstances, you may be discharged immediately or may have to stay in the hospital for a few days.

Your surgical incision will be covered with gauze or a bandage. Within 1–2 days after surgery, your doctor will usually ask you to wear an elastic support or compression garment (such as a corset) to help support your stomach as it heals.

The skin in the area of ​​the incision is usually painful, and experiences bruising and swelling for a few days after surgery. The doctor will give the patient pain medication to relieve it. For swelling and incisions, it may take up to 3 months to fully heal.

If the patient is put on a special tube to drain fluid under the skin, the doctor will explain how to treat it, including how to record the amount of fluid in the collection bag and how to empty it.The tube will be removed by the doctor when the patient is under control.

You may be able to return to work and activities in about 4 weeks after surgery. However, you still need to avoid strenuous activity for at least 6 weeks.

Complications of Excess Abdominal Skin Lift

The following are some of the complications that can occur as a result of surgical removal of excess abdominal skin:

  • Bleeding at the wound site
  • Scar tissue appears
  • Continuous pain
  • skin numbness
  • Infection
  • Liquid buildup under the skin of the abdomen
  • nerve damage in the stomach area
  • Blood Coagulation

Panniculectomy surgery can indeed be a solution to overcome complaints of excessive abdominal skin due to considerable weight loss. However, before this operation is performed, it requires the doctor's consideration and special preparation.

If you experience complaints related to this condition, consult your doctor whether you need to undergo panniculectomy surgery or not. Based on your overall he alth condition, the doctor will recommend the most appropriate and safe way to deal with the complaints that are bothering you.

Written by:

dr. Sonny Seputra, M.Ked.Klin, Sp.B, FINACS(Surgeon Specialist)

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