Liposuction vs. Tummy Tuck

woman side body, thin waistSwimsuit season is approaching fast, which means that it’s time to start thinking about tightening up your tummy and losing the extra fat you’ve been storing throughout the winter. You’ve no doubt heard the terms “liposuction” and “tummy tuck”, also known as “abdominoplasty”. Liposuction and tummy tucks often get lumped together because both involve tightening and smoothing a particularly stubborn area of the body in terms of fat loss: the abdominal area.

So what’s the difference between the procedures, and which one is right for you?

Tummy tucks are designed to remove excess skin and tighten loose abdominal muscles in the midsection. By contrast, liposuction is for the patient who does not have issues with excess skin or loose muscles, but simply want packets of fat removed in the abdomen, thighs or hips. Because his or her skin is already taut, it will conform to the new fat-free area to create a smooth, flat surface.

Liposuction is more common, and takes about 1 hour per area of fat removal, so it’s a shorter procedure than abdominoplasty. After receiving liposuction, patients can typically return to work within a week and will be able to resume most normal activities within six weeks.

Tummy tucks, because they involve an extra cut on the lower abdomen in order to remove the excess skin after fat removal, require both a longer operation (2 hours) and recovery time. Patients usually take two weeks off of work after receiving a tummy tuck and it may take up to six weeks before they can fully resume all normal activities.

Choosing between a tummy tuck and liposuction ultimately depends on your body type and the results you are seeking. We may even recommend a combination of the two in order to get the look you truly want. If you need any more information about either of these surgeries, or would like help choosing which one is right for you, give us a call today!