Florence Mussat, M.D.
680 N Lake Shore Dr. #1030 Chicago, IL 60611 (312) 751-9000


Category: tummy tuck

3 Tips for a Speedy Tummy Tuck Recovery

Abdominoplasty, better known as a tummy tuck, is a popular cosmetic correction for women and men who struggle with loose skin and tissue in the abdominal area. The surgery is effective in reinforcing the abdominal wall and removing excess, sagging skin.

While recovery is more extensive than most cosmetic procedures, you can implement some practices patients to make your healing period shorter and more effective.

Most tummy tuck patients take approximately six weeks to feel completely healed. To ensure you recover in that timeframe, or perhaps faster, here are three tips to help you speed up the process.

1. Eat Right

Eating a healthy diet with lean proteins, fresh fruits, and vegetables and drinking plenty of water is essential to a speedy recovery. Fueling your body correctly will help hasten the healing process with less risk of complications.

We suggest you grocery shop in advance of your operation to ensure you have everything you need when you return home. Also, you may want to do food prep to have nutritious meals readily available after surgery.

2. Wear Your Compression Garment as Prescribed

After your tummy tuck, Dr. Mussat will fit you with a surgical garment designed to support your sutures and prevent excess swelling and inflammation. Make sure you wear it as instructed to speed up your recovery time.

3. Avoid Lifting Heavy Objects

During your recovery period, you should avoid lifting anything heavier than a gallon of milk for six to eight weeks. Also, don’t expect to feel well enough to stand up straight during recovery. To avoid straining your sutures, you may feel more comfortable staying hunched over for several days after surgery.

Other Suggestions to Consider

Here are some other tips to consider ensuring your tummy tuck recovery goes well and you heal correctly in the shortest amount of time.

  • Take all prescription and over-the-counter medications as instructed.
  • Have family and friends help you around the house.
  • Don’t do any strenuous workouts for six weeks, or until Dr. Mussat clears you to do so.
  • Walk around your house, yard, or street periodically to help circulation.
  • Don’t smoke and limit alcohol intake.
  • Get plenty of rest and sleep.

Why Choose Dr. Mussat to Perform Your Tummy Tuck?

Board-certified plastic and reconstructive surgeon Dr. Florence Mussat has extensive training and experience in her craft. She has been in private practice in downtown Chicago for over 20 years.

She graduated with honors from the prestigious and world-renowned University R. Descartes School of Medicine in Paris. She completed her residency at the State University of New York Health Science Center. Currently, she serves as assistant clinical professor of surgery at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

If you would like more information about tummy tuck surgery, we are here for you. Contact Florence Mussat Cosmetic & Reconstructive Plastic Surgery in Chicago, Illinois, by calling (312) 751-9000 or scheduling a consultation online.

Get Ready for Valentine’s Day – 10 Ways to Look and Feel Your Best

Valentine’s Day comes at the perfect time of year. The joy and excitement of the Christmas season are but a memory. As we eagerly begin to anticipate the arrival of spring, February brings us Valentine’s Day and, with it, a much-needed dose of fun, romance, and excitement.

With more and more people going the extra mile to look their best for Valentine’s Day, why not schedule a visit with Dr. Florence Mussat at her Chicago plastic surgery office?

Be on your way to a fresh, vibrant look with one of these 10 solutions from Dr. Mussat.

1.     Restore Youthful Fullness to Your Face

Perhaps it’s due to genetics, aging, or simply your facial structure, but parts of your face could be lacking in volume and making you appear gaunt. Well, it is possible to enhance your facial volume and improve the appearance of your face with a facial fat transfer expertly performed by Dr. Mussat.

2.     Fall in Love With Your Skin

Taking care of one’s skin is essential throughout the year, and there’s no better time than now to get back your radiant glow in time for Valentine’s Day with a nonsurgical facial rejuvenation treatment.

With medical-grade, topical retinoids, various conditions, including mild to moderate acne, signs of sun damage, freckles, fine lines, and wrinkles, can be treated.

3.     Refresh Your Eyelids

Your eyes may be the window to your soul, but drooping eyelid skin or undereye bags could be concealing and aging your eyes, making you look tired, sad, or angry. If so, you could be a good candidate for an eyelid lift, also known as blepharoplasty. It could take years off your appearance and give your self-esteem a big boost.

4.     Repair the Sun Damage

Even though summer is long gone, your skin could still be showing signs of too much sun with dryness, new lines, and wrinkles. Dr. Mussat offers a range of treatments to undo the harsh effects of summer, and just two of these are highlighted below.

Chemical Peel: Replaces thickened and damaged skin with fresh, youthful cells, eliminating uneven pigmentation and skin discoloration.

Microdermabrasion: By rubbing fine crystals across the skin with a medically-calibrated wand, the rough outer layer is removed, and new skin stimulated.

Laser Skin Rejuvenation: A concentrated beam of light is used to gently exfoliate the skin’s sun-damaged outer layer.

5.     Reclaim Your Youthful Shape

Becoming a mother can be one of the most rewarding experiences. However, pregnancy and breastfeeding can leave you with unwelcome reminders such as stomach flab and flattened breasts.

While diet and exercise can go a long way towards reclaiming your youthful appeal, a mommy makeover as a Valentine’s gift to yourself could be all you need to restore your youthful figure.

6.     Get Back Those Perky Breasts

Full, perky breasts may be a distant memory of the days before gravity, weight loss, pregnancy, or breastfeeding changed things. To regain confidence in your appearance this Valentine’s Day, a breast lift could be exactly what you need.

7.     Slim Your Jawline

Whether it’s the result of age or weight gain, a double chin can be one of the most frustrating facial flaws to have. Through a facelift, Dr. Mussat can tighten loose skin under your chin and neck area, lift those sagging jowls and restore a youthful appearance.

8.     Tone and Tighten

Are you plagued by problem areas of flab that won’t go away? Regardless of how much you exercise and eat healthily, do you find that lean, sexy stomach continues to elude you?

Well, you might consider a tummy tuck, also known as abdominoplasty, which surgically removes excess skin and flesh from the abdomen and even repairs abdominal muscles damaged during pregnancy or weight gain.

9.     Restore Those Smooth Contours

If you’ve lost a significant amount of weight either through diet, exercise, or bariatric surgery, you could now have excess skin in areas of the body where large amounts of fat used to be. Through one or more body contouring procedures, expertly performed by Dr. Mussat, you could be well on your way to having your body’s contours restored by Valentine’s Day.

10.            Put Your Best Face Forward

Despite taking good care of yourself and trying to age gracefully, age-related changes in your face are still inevitable.

With facelift surgery, Dr. Mussat can tighten and lift the soft tissues of your face, tighten lax, excess skin and surgically reposition sagging facial tissue giving you a more youthful, rejuvenated look.

Regain Your Sexy, Youthful Look in Time for Valentine’s Day!

What better to get a self-confidence boost and bring some excitement back into your love life before Valentine’s Day than a visit to board-certified plastic and reconstructive surgeon Dr. Florence Mussat in Chicago, IL?

Too look your absolute best before Valentine’s day, schedule a personal consultation or call (312) 751-9000 today!

Should You Add Liposuction to Your Tummy Tuck?

Are you struggling with your middle section sporting a permanent belly pooch, loose skin, and an extra layer of fat? Are you finding that, despite your healthy diet and consistent exercise routine, that your lean, sexy stomach is as elusive as ever?

Well, it’s not your fault. Excess skin, stretched muscles due to pregnancy, stubborn fat, or both are conditions that many of us encounter. You might be a good candidate for a tummy tuck, or liposuction, or a combination of these. Combining the two procedures, known as lipoabdominoplasty, might the best choice if your goal is to tighten your abdominal area as well as remove excess fat.

Liposuction uses suction to remove isolated pockets of stubborn subcutaneous fat in those pesky love handles, belly fat, and back rolls. What it doesn’t address is excess skin or muscle laxity that may follow pregnancy or weight loss.

On the other hand, a tummy tuck removes excess skin and tightens loose or separated abdominal muscles, resulting in a smooth, toned physique. For those areas of stubborn fat surrounding the abdomen, on its own, a tummy tuck may not be the most effective option.

Liposuction, combined with other procedures, is safe and growing in popularity. For example, for the mommy makeovers procedure Dr. Florence Mussat offers, she may combine liposuction with a tummy tuck. Doing this in one procedure removes excess fat and reduces abdominal stretching, returning your body to its former, more desirable, sexy shape.

How Does Liposuction Complement a Tummy Tuck in Chicago, IL?

At the start of your tummy tuck surgery, Dr. Mussat first performs liposuction throughout the abdominal area to eliminate excess fat. A tiny tube, known as a cannula, is inserted through small incisions in the abdomen, and fat cells are removed with an aspirator.

Once the fat has been removed, the tummy tuck is then performed, removing excess tissue and skin, and tightening the abdominal muscles, resulting in a flatter, firmer abdominal profile.

What Are the Benefits of Adding Liposuction to Your Tummy Tuck?

The most significant benefit of adding liposuction to your tummy tuck is that exercise- and diet-resistant fat can be removed during the same procedure where loose skin is tightened, and stretched muscles are repaired.

Scheduling only one surgery with just one recovery period and less overall downtime is an excellent benefit for someone with a busy schedule.

Finally, when your tummy tuck is combined with liposuction, body contouring results are maximized. Removing excess fat and stretched loose skin at the same time is often the most efficient and effective approach in getting ready for that new bathing suit!

How Do You Decide to Add Liposuction to Your Tummy Tuck?

You can combine these two procedures following a consultation with board-certified plastic surgeon, Dr. Florence Mussat, in Chicago, IL. She would be happy to help you make this decision and to plan for the procedure itself. Schedule a personal consultation online or by calling (312) 751-9000 today!

How Pregnancy Affects a Tummy Tuck

Pregnancy is an exciting time for new beginnings, and to bring a new life into the world can be a beautiful and life-changing experience for a woman. It is a blessing for a family and offers many joyful, exciting moments, as well as some challenging lifestyle adjustments.

Of course, life happens, and it’s not always possible to plan for all pregnancies. After you gave birth to your last child, believing you had completed your family, you had a tummy tuck, also known as an abdominoplasty.

Now that you unexpectedly find yourself pregnant again, you start wondering how having had this procedure might affect not only the pregnancy itself or the delivery of your new baby, but also the results of your surgery.

Pregnancy After Your Tummy Tuck Surgery

Your health should not be a concern during your pregnancy. It’s essential early on to let your OB-GYN know about your abdominoplasty, as well as to inform Dr. Mussat that you are pregnant. Having taken care of this, you should be able to relax and enjoy the experience of preparing for the exciting arrival of your new baby.

Pregnancy and childbirth after a tummy tuck are safe for both you and your baby. Your precious little one will have plenty of room to grow and thrive. Avoiding gaining too much weight during pregnancy is the best way to preserve the results of your tummy tuck procedure well after the birth of your child.

Even after your abdominoplasty, your abdominal wall and tissue will still be able to stretch as usual to accommodate the new baby. You and your family and friends might even notice that your belly isn’t stretching out as much as it did before, or that your baby bump isn’t as prominent as it was during your previous pregnancy.

Should you have any concerns about experiencing a healthy pregnancy following your tummy tuck, contact Dr. Florence Mussat in Chicago, IL, and schedule a consultation.

What Will Happen to Your Tummy Tuck Results?

During your consultation with Dr. Mussat, she will confirm that most of her patients who become pregnant after their abdominoplasty continue to be thrilled with the results of their surgery after the birth of their baby. Don’t be surprised if you look even better than the last time you were pregnant as a result of your tummy tuck.

Providing you don’t put on too much weight during the pregnancy, having had a tummy tuck, your midline connective tissue shouldn’t stretch very much. The strong scar tissue holding the abdominal muscles together from the previous abdominoplasty can still extend outward, allowing the baby to grow. Of course, another benefit of this strong scar tissue is that, after birth, it can retract again without causing the same gap between your abdominal muscles that you had before.

And even if you end up with some excess abdominal skin due to pregnancy stretch, Dr. Mussat will be able to remove it and tighten up this region of your body.

Will a C-Section Affect Your Tummy Tuck?

As the time arrives to give birth, there is a chance you might need a cesarean section. While your existing scar tissue can affect having a C-section after a tummy tuck, keep in mind that having a C-section after abdominoplasty isn’t much different from having a repeat C-section. Either way, your OB-GYN will still be working with scar tissue from the previous procedure, be it from an earlier C-section or an abdominoplasty. Of course, this possibility means you should let your OB-GYN know that you have already had abdominoplasty surgery, as sometimes the scar may not be noticeable.

One thing to keep in mind is that that sometimes, your OB-GYN might not be able to close your new cesarean section incision with the skill of a plastic surgeon, and this might affect the appearance of the scar. Consulting with both your OB-GYN and Dr. Mussat in advance can prepare all parties for this possibility.

Get Ready for Your Big Day!

As a mother with numerous responsibilities, self-care can often feel like a luxury; however, by putting yourself first, you’ll find you can look forward to the arrival of this baby just as you did the last!

To learn more about how to best prepare for the birth of your new child or to discuss your post-pregnancy tummy tuck, contact Dr. Florence Mussat in Chicago, IL, to schedule a private appointment. As an innovator in abdominoplasty techniques, Dr. Mussat will be happy to work with you on your surgical plan.

Minimizing Tummy Tuck Scars at Home

A tummy tuck can change your look in wonderful ways — giving you a flat belly, a curvy waist, more defined abdominal muscles, and smoother skin. But, like all plastic surgery, it also leaves scars, in this case, hidden below the panty line. What can you do at home, as you recover from the procedure, to make tummy tuck scars less noticeable? Here are some important tips.

Follow Your Doctor’s Recovery Instructions

The most important thing you can do to minimize the appearance of tummy tuck scars is to follow your doctor’s recovery instructions. 

  • Care for the incision as instructed. That will include changing the dressings and gently cleaning the healing wound.
  • Get up to walk soon after the surgery and engage in some gentle activity every day as you recover. This reduces swelling and the risk of blood clots by stimulating circulation in the treated tissue.
  • Drink plenty of fluids and eat a healthy diet during your recovery. This promotes skin health and healing.
  • Avoid heavy lifting and other strenuous activity that can strain or put pressure on your abdomen. This is to prevent pulling at the sutures and stretching the skin.
  • Don’t smoke. You will have had to stop smoking for several weeks before the surgery. You also need to stay smoke-free for several weeks after to allow the incisions to heal well.

Use Topical Treatments at the Right Time

Topical treatments, including silicone and vitamin E, can promote healing and help minimize scarring, but only if applied at the right time — neither too early nor too late in the recovery timeline. Used too early, they can enter the wound and increase the risk of infection. Used too late, they don’t do as much good. 

Follow your doctor’s advice and apply silicone gel, cream, or sheeting once the incision is completely closed and is no longer scabbing. Silicone applications maintain healthy hydration in the developing scar tissue and may send a signal that curbs the production of excess collagen. 

Vitamin E (in the form of 100 percent vitamin E oil) may also improve the appearance of scars and can help to keep the tissue moisturized when used after the incision is closed. (If you experience any irritation or skin reaction from the oil, stop using it right away.)

Avoid Sun Exposure

We all know that UV radiation from the sun damages the skin, causing tanning or burning. It can also cause permanent discoloration in developing scar tissue. Avoid exposing the scar to the sun for at least a year after your surgery. Use a sunscreen formula that’s SPF 30 or higher, preferably a product made specifically for scars. (These include Mederma Scar Cream Plus SPF 30, Dermaflage Scarscreen SPF 30, and Bioderma Photoderm LASER SPF 50+ Cream.)

Watch for Signs of Infection

Infection can be a nasty setback to healing. Without prompt treatment, it can also intensify scarring. Follow instructions for changing dressings and cleaning the incision, and see your doctor right away if you notice any signs of infection. These can include:

  • New or excessive bleeding along the incision
  • Redness, swelling, or bruising in the area of the incision that is getting worse instead of better
  • Yellowish or greenish discharge from the incision, or any discharge with an unpleasant smell
  • Fever or chills
  • Severe pain

Be Patient

It’s normal for scars to form with a darker red or purple color. That’s because the tissue has an additional flow of blood as it is healing. After about three months, this dark coloring will gradually begin to fade. You’ll see improvement by six months and near-final results by about a year after surgery. The scars will continue to fade even more for years. So don’t worry if scars are visible in the early stages of healing. That’s to be expected. Have patience and give your body time.

Get a Free Professional Consultation

Dr. Florence Mussat is a board-certified plastic surgeon in downtown Chicago. Call our office at (312) 751-9000 today or contact us online to schedule a personal consultation.