Liposuction vs. Tummy Tuck: Which is Right for Me?

Friday February 17, 2017 | Liposuction, Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty)

liposuction or tummy tuckIt’s no secret that most people desire a firm and flat stomach, but not everyone can achieve this ideal aesthetic naturally. Even if you diet and exercise on a regular basis, you may still experience loose skin around your midsection or have pockets of fat that don’t seem to be shrinking in size. When your efforts are going unnoticed, you may consider surgery to help you achieve an appealing body contour.

Although you may have decided to opt for surgery, it might be difficult to determine which procedure to undergo. Both liposuction and tummy tucks are known to reduce the size of a bulging abdomen, but there are differences between the two methods that can help you narrow down the right surgery for you. It’s helpful to consider your cosmetic goals and expectations when choosing treatment, some of which we will address here.

What’s more important, skin or fat removal?

A personal consultation will help pinpoint the source of your cosmetic concerns, giving insight into the optimal plastic surgery procedure to undergo. At Lickstein Plastic Surgery, we recommend liposuction if you have unresponsive fatty deposits in your abdomen. Liposuction specifically targets unwanted fat and removes it from the body to produce a slimmer aesthetic.

If excess skin is your primary concern, then a tummy tuck might be better suited for your needs. Along with removing fat, a tummy tuck procedure will excise any sagging skin and reposition it around the abdominal muscles to create a firm and toned midsection.

Are you considering your age?

Typically, the older you become, the less elasticity your skin has, which can determine how effective plastic surgery will be. Liposuction is arguably the most efficient fat removal procedure, but doesn’t do much to reduce sagging skin. On the other hand, a tummy tuck can eliminate excess fat and skin, which might yield greater results for older individuals.

How much recovery time do you expect?

Regardless of age, many patients will choose to undergo liposuction because they desire a shorter recovery period. Whereas liposuction may take one or two weeks to heal fully, abdominoplasty may take a bit more time before you can engage in more strenuous activities.

The incisional techniques for each procedure also vary, with liposuction involving several small incisions, and a tummy tuck requiring a longer incision beneath the pubic hairline. In both cases, incisions are created as inconspicuously as possible, but their appearance may help you choose one procedure over the other.

Are you ok with an invasive procedure?

Many people desire a slimmer profile, but don’t necessarily want to experience invasive techniques to get there. Both liposuction and abdominoplasty are safe and effective procedures, but the latter does require more involvement in the abdominal region, and therefore more downtime. If you would rather receive a minimally invasive treatment, the smaller incisions that come along with liposuction may be more suitable. The procedure you choose depends on your expected timeline as well as your comfort level.

The only way to find out which procedure is best for you is to seek the professional opinion of a board certified plastic surgeon. Through a personal consultation and evaluation, Dr. Lickstein can help you determine whether you would benefit from liposuction or tummy tuck surgery. To learn more about your treatment options, contact Lickstein Plastic Surgery at (561) 571-4000 and schedule an appointment.