Liposuction and Tummy Tucks are totally different
The proper liposuction patient has often not had children, has good muscle tone and good skin elasticity, no rolls or folds, and just some extra fat that won’t go away with diet and exercise.
The tummy tuck patient typically has children (or has lost massive weight), has extra skin of marginal or poor elasticity and could use some muscle tightening.
The two surgeries are intended to get you the abdomen you want but the most common mistake is seeing a patient who needed a tummy tuck going with liposuction thinking they would get the same result as from the tummy tuck but without the scar. Certainly, nobody wants the lengthy tummy tuck scar, but a greater number of patients who have children need this more than they need liposuction in order to get to their tightest and flattest result.
Skin tone makes the difference between Tummy Tuck and Liposuction
Many patients who come in for a liposuction consultation but have loose skin in the abdominal area. The reason this is a problem is that when fat is removed, the skin over that area has to shrink and if it lacks elastic tone then it isn’t going to adapt to the new contour. So you trade one problem (localized fat) for another (hanging or uneven skin).
Liposuction for excess fat, Tummy Tuck for loose skin
Liposuction is used in the abdomen to reduce the thickness of the fat in the subcutaneous location, that is, between the skin and the underlying muscles. It does not result in tightening of the skin, just debulking. Therefore, if you have loose or overhanging skin, the skin tone is poor and it will not “spring back” very well after liposuction alone. Your abdomen may be debulked, but the skin may be even more loose and wrinkled.
Abdominoplasty, or “tummy tuck,” is an operation that tightens and removes excess and loose skin. In most cases, if the underlying fascia (that surrounds and supports the abdominal muscles) has been stretched by pregnancy as well, it is also tightened during abdominoplasty in order to achieve a tighter, flatter tummy. In cases where there is both excess thickness of fat AND excess or loose skin, liposuction and tummy tuck may be combined, although whether this can be done at the same procedure depends on your surgeon.
After weight loss or a pregnancy, a person can be left with excess, loose skin. In most cases, excess skin will not go away with just diet and exercise. In such cases, a surgeon may recommend a procedure called a panniculectomy, which essentially remove excess skin.
Contact us if you need further information.