Can a Tummy Tuck Reduce Appetite?

December 30, 2013

A tummy tuck cosmetic surgical procedure can be an excellent option for patients who may have excess abdominal skin following a pregnancy or sudden loss of a large amount of weight. However, some patients may wonder if a tummy tuck procedure can help reduce appetite, which may help with weight loss. The truth is that while a tummy tuck might change appetite, it is generally just temporary. In comparison, a lap band procedure is specifically designed to help reduce appetite.

Tummy Tuck Procedure

In a tummy tuck procedure, incisions are made across the lower abdomen and belly button, depending on the extent of work to be done. The skin, underlying tissue, and muscle are then separated, tightened, and then excess skin is removed. The procedure is done under either general or twilight anesthesia. It can take anywhere from two to three hours, depending upon the extent of work needed. Although the tummy tuck procedure does not remove abdominal fat, it can be combined with a liposuction procedure to remove stubborn pockets of fat that do not respond to regular exercise and a sensible diet.

Patients who undergo a tummy tuck may feel that their appetite has changed. They may only eat a small breakfast and then not be hungry again until dinnertime. In most cases, this is temporary, resulting from tightened abdominal muscles, which may result in repositioned stomach and/or intestines. Additionally, those patients who are prone to intestinal issues, such as lactose intolerance or irritable bowel syndrome, may find that their gastro-intestinal tract is affected following a tummy tuck procedure. Another possibility for appetite change may be due to normal swelling following a tummy tuck, which can press on the stomach or intestines and reduce their volume. In most cases, the appetite should return to normal once the swelling has gone down.

Lap Band Procedure

A lap band is considered a weight loss tool, not a cure. Patients who undergo a lap band procedure will still need to maintain a regular exercise plan and a sensible diet with smaller portions.

In the lap band procedure, a band is placed around the top opening to the stomach. It is then tightened or loosened by pumping the band full of saline. The procedure can take anywhere from 45 minutes to two hours, depending on how much work needs to be done.

The concept behind a lap band procedure is to create a smaller opening to the stomach itself by holding food for a longer period of time in the top portion of the band, just above the stomach. By allowing less food into the stomach at once, the body feels fuller much sooner. Patients will need to periodically revisit their surgeon to have the amount of restriction in the band adjusted by increasing or decreasing the amount of saline.

Patients that have not had success with other weight loss methods may be interested in undergoing lap band surgery. Those patients who are looking for appetite control should contact a bariatric surgeon about the lap band or other gastric bypass options. After lap band, many patients choose to undergo a tummy tuck to remove excess skin that has accumulated on the stomach.

Contact Crawford Plastic Surgery to schedule a tummy tuck consultation.

Add new comment