Even with numerous non-surgical body contouring options available, people still request surgical options, such as tummy tucks or liposuction, in high numbers. However, when you can’t get rid of fat no matter what diets and exercises you try, liposuction or a tummy tuck may be your best option. While they have similar goals, tummy tuck and liposuction are not the same type of procedure. Learn the differences between a tummy tuck and liposuction.
The Purpose of a Tummy Tuck
Sometimes after pregnancy or weight loss, the abdomen stretches beyond its limits, and the skin becomes loose. Tummy tucks also address the separation of abdominal muscles from the abdominal wall, which is similar to a loosened corset. A tummy tuck attempts to restore the corset effect and loose skin by making an incision from hip to hip near the bathing suit line and across the belly button, if needed. The surgeon stretches and trims the skin, pulls it tight to make a sleeker look, then stitches it in place.
A tummy tuck requires general anesthesia, which means you need to stay in the hospital for several hours. It commonly takes two weeks or more to stand normally and about five weeks to return to normal or strenuous activity. You’ll have to wear a compression garment to prevent build up of fluids. Some patients may qualify for a mini-tummy tuck, which uses a shorter incision. It takes less time to recover, but you still should avoid strenuous activity for several weeks. Candidates must be in excellent health, have a BMI under 30, and near a healthy and stable weight.
The Purpose of Liposuction
Liposuction removes localized fat deposits using a long tube called a cannula. First, the surgeon makes tiny punctures with a fine needle and inserts the cannula to break the fat deposits. They vacuum the liquid with a medical device and close the sutures. You may be put under local anesthesia or IV sedation.
If you are within 25 pounds of your ideal body weight, not pregnant, and in good health, you may be a candidate. Unlike a tummy tuck, liposuction does not remove sagging skin. You don’t have a long recovery period if no anesthesia was used, and you may be able to return to normal activity in several days to two weeks, depending on the amount of fat removed.
When one procedure doesn’t address all the issues, you may have them done at the same time for enhancement. Getting them done at the same time eliminates the need of two surgeries. A study in 2012 reported that 99% of clients didn’t experience additional pain when they combined the two procedures.
Finding a Surgeon
Regardless of which procedure you choose, the first step to looking better is to find a qualified surgeon like Dr. Leland Deane. Dr. Deane will advise on what procedures are right for you.