Progressive Tension Suture Abdominoplasty (Tummy Tuck)

The Progressive Tension Suture method is a technique used in tummy tucks (abdominoplasty) to reduce the necessity for drain tubes. This is one of the main concerns for patients considering a tummy tuck, but drains are routinely used because of the tendency for fluid accumulations (called seromas) to form with these types of operations. In the 1990’s I developed a procedure which reduced the fluid accumulations, enabling the drains to come out much sooner. The operation came to be called the Progressive Tension Suture method by Dr. Harlan Pollock of Dallas, who stopped using drains altogether. I find that drains are still useful because I also remove the fat layer under the flap, but the drains are still removed early. Note in this early article that the higher scar placement was considered ideal because of “French cut” fashions at the time.

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