Triple board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Henry Mentz of Houston invented the Abdominal Etching (or Ab Etch) liposuction technique in 1992 to create more visible muscular definition in the male torso. Also referred to as the “washboard abs” look, the procedure is designed for men who are relatively fit but desire a leaner, chiseled abdominal appearance. Dr. Mentz invented both Ab Etch and Pec Etch and is considered a world authority on the specialized liposuction technique. Since its introduction, Abdominal Etching has garnered international acclaim as Dr. Mentz has presented the technique to plastic surgeons around the globe and teaches a popular course on the specialized lipocontouring technique at the respected American Society of Aesthetic Plastic Surgery annual meeting.
"Dr. Mentz is nothing short of a magician. I went to him for an abdominoplasty in November of 2015 and his work has been life changing. His "bedside manner" is equal to his skill. I did not, for one moment, feel spoken down to or intimidated by his brilliance. He was kind, professional and has a great sense of humor. This man is an artist."- J.R. / Facebook / Aug 16, 2017
"I had my face lift almost 5 years ago and I'm still so happy with the results.Dr.Mentz and his staff are the best. ."- P.L. / Facebook / Nov 03, 2017
"54 Year Lady - Renee"- M. / RealSelf / Sep 03, 2017
"Renee"- M. / RealSelf / Sep 03, 2017
"Dr. Mentz is nothing short of a magician. I went to him for an abdominoplasty in November of 2015 and his work has been life changing."- J.R. / Facebook / Aug 16, 2017
Prior to the surgical procedure, Dr. Mentz makes detailed markings of the patient’s flexed abdominal muscles. During the procedure, both the waist and abdomen are recontoured through a two-fold process: after thinning the abdominal fat pad, fat is selectively removed from the the underlying muscles to define their contours. In the first part of the operation, a thin, hollow tube called a cannula is used to thin the abdominal fat pad in order to unveil the underlying muscles. Then, following the markings he has made, Dr. Mentz outlines the rectus muscles and the linea alba, the line which runs down the center of the abdomen. Dr. Mentz uses a PAL technique for his Abdominal Etching patients.
Following your procedure, you will be fitted with a compression garment to reduce bruising and swelling. Most bruising and swelling diminishes within two weeks. If you live within 20 miles of our facility, a plastic surgery nurse will visit to monitor your recovery, change any dressings, assist you with your medication, and provide Dr. Mentz with an update on your condition. Most patients can return to work within 1 week after surgery and resume exercise in 3 weeks.
Multiple procedures will reduce the costs for anesthesia and facility time. Please be aware that the prices listed below are for an estimate of fees only and that you will need a consultation to confirm any pricing.
Plan Your Procedure
- Average Cost
- $12,000 - $16,000
- Recovery Time
- 4-6 Weeks
- Average Procedure Time
- 1-2 Hours
- Procedure Recovery Location
Ab Etching FAQs?
With Pec Etch?
Because half of all Abdominal Etching patients also have softness and fullness in the breast region, Dr. Mentz frequently combines Abdominal Etching with a gynecomastia procedure to reduce breast size and Pectoral Etching to reveal pectoralis muscle definition in the chest. Abdominal Etching is similar to Pectoral Etching in that the underlying muscles of the abdomen are outlined to reveal the contours of the muscles that create the look of “washboard abs.”
Once the procedure is complete, adhesive foam tape is placed on the abdomen to reduce swelling and provide earlier definition of the etched areas. Most incisions are hidden in the natural body creases and leave very small scars. Abdominal Etching is a performed in 1-2 hours as an outpatient procedure.
Modified Ab Etch?
Dr. Mentz developed a modified Abdominal Etching method for men who have higher body fat levels above 20%. For body builders, the transverse inscriptions are also etched, as part of a full Abdominal Etching procedure. In the modified technique, the transverse inscriptions are not outlined.