Abdominal Laxity Correction
Abdominal laxity or bulge results from the splaying of abdominal muscles. This is often a result of aging or post-pregnancy, resulting in the weakening of both the abdominal rectus muscles as well as the fascia that overlies and separates them in the midline. This is not considered by many to be an actual hernia, as there is no real hernia sac with intra-abdominal contents.
This weakness or bulge is often unsightly, and aggravated when the patient has a large meal or strains, such as during exercise. Although there is no significant functional deficit from this bulge, the psychological impact can be quite large. Due to the unsightly nature, many patients often curtail their activities such as swimming, which would otherwise involve exposure of the tummy.
Correction of the bulge requires the bringing together of the splayed rectus abdominis muscles and reinforcement to revent future recurrence. This may be done in solitude or in combination with a tummy tuck procedure. The procedure for correction involves the placement of permanent barbed sutures to plicate the abdominal muscles together through a small pantyline incision. Individual suture can also be placed to reinforce the repair.
Post-operatively, the patient would experience some abdominal tightness, especially after meals. This sense of bloatedness will gradually wear off in the weeks that follow the surgery as the body adapts to the new, tightened abdominal musculature. A compression garment will also have to be worn for 4 to 6 weeks after the procedure to augment the repair, in order to prevent any snapping of the sutures and recurrence of the bulge.
Abdominal laxity correction is performed under general anaesthesia or deep intravenous sedation as a day surgery procedure. Patients are able to go home the same day. They are able to return to light activity after 3 to 4 days, although strenuous activity should be held off for a month after.
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