Study Says Tummy Tuck Can Improve Stress Urinary Incontinence

Tummy tuck surgery is amongst the most widely requested body contouring procedures, resulting in a trimmer and a well-shaped midsection. It can resolve conditions such as a protruding belly or sagging skin and muscles after excessive weight loss. According to a report in Healthcanel, a new study provides some interesting information about this popular plastic surgery procedure – that it can help improve stress urinary continence as well. According to the study published in the Aesthetic Surgery Journal, the official publication of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS), results are visible particularly among women who have not undergone cesarean section before.

The researchers surveyed tummy tuck candidates to determine changes in their stress urinary incontinence symptoms. Ninety percent of the women who were part of the study had at least one pregnancy. Several factors were analyzed including

  • amount of weight gain with pregnancy
  • number of pregnancies
  • multiple vs. single pregnancies
  • history of cesarean sections
  • amount of weight loss before surgery
  • symptoms related to stress or urgency incontinence
  • severity of incontinence following abdominoplasty

It was found that the symptoms of stress urinary incontinence were considerably alleviated in 60% of the women, especially in those who had not undergone previous cesarean section.

The surgeons who conducted the study pointed out that they pull up adequate soft tissue in the pelvic area during the tummy tuck surgery. If the pull was sufficient to suspend the urethra, it could build a minor bladder outlet obstruction to minimize incontinence. However, they also noted the importance of conducting anatomic studies to determine the optimal surgical techniques for abdominoplasty. One of the surgeons said that the techniques "should be good enough to improve incontinence and narrow down the patients with stress urinary incontinence to benefit the most".

The latest statistics from the American Society of Plastic Surgeons (ASPS) show that there was a more than 78% increase the demand for the procedure during 2000-2013, and that up to 111,986 tummy tuck surgeries were performed last year. Its ability to provide medical benefits too will contribute even further to its popularity.