Synonyms: Tummy tuck

Medical Specialties: Plastic Surgery

Clinical Definition

Abdominoplasty is an elective procedure to remove excess fat and abdominal skin while tightening weakened or separated stomach muscles. 

In Our Own Words

An abdominoplasty flattens, firms and slims the abdomen by removing excess fat and skin while tightening muscles in the abdominal wall. It is a major elective surgery that requires general anesthesia and a recovery time of four to six weeks.


Candidates include women whose skin and abdominal muscles have been stretched by pregnancy; formerly obese individuals who cannot eliminate fat deposits and excess skin; and dieters and exercisers who cannot attain a flat, well-toned abdomen due to age or heredity.  

Relevant Conditions
  • Lyposuction
  • Face-lift
Common Types
  • Complete abdominoplasty
  • Partial abdominoplasty
  • Circumferential abdominoplasty (includes fat removal from the back and hips)
Side Effects
  • Pain
  • Swelling
  • Abdominal scarring
  • 4 to 6 weeks of limited physical activity
Share this article
  • Harvard Health Publications. “Medical Dictionary of Health Terms.” http://www.health.harvard.edu/medical-dictionary-of-health-terms/a-through-c. Accessed September 2013.
  • American Society of Plastic Surgeons. “Tummy Tuck.” http://www.plasticsurgery.org/cosmetic-procedures/tummy-tuck.html. Accessed October 2013.
  • Cleveland Clinic. “Abdominoplasty (Tummy Tuck).” http://my.clevelandclinic.org/services/Abdominoplasty_tummy_tuck/hic_Abdominoplasty_Tummy_Tuck.aspx. Accessed September 2013.
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