Tummy Tuck or Liposuction: Which Is Right for You?

A flat, toned, and defined abdomen has always been the ultimate fitness goal. Unfortunately, achieving and maintaining this look naturally can prove to be challenging. In some cases, weight fluctuations, pregnancy, and genetics render it impossible. 

The tummy tuck and liposuction are two of the safest and oldest ways to attain a more defined midsection, and they both rank in the top 5 most popular surgical cosmetic procedures in the United States.

Both procedures have a similar end goal: a flat, tight, and toned midsection worthy of a fitness magazine. However, they’re two different procedures. To help you decide which one can best help you achieve your aesthetic goals, Michael Schwartz, MD, explains some of the differences and similarities between the two procedures.

Loose skin vs. fat pockets

Before making a decision, you have to ask yourself what bothers you the most: fat deposits or loose skin?

Liposuction works best for patients who can’t get rid of fat pockets and want to achieve a slimmer look. You’re a good candidate if you’re close to your ideal weight, have tight skin, and don’t experience weight fluctuations. You also can get liposuction on other areas of your body, including your back, thighs, flanks, and arms.

If your concerns are loose skin, stretch marks, and separated abdominal muscles — such as after pregnancy or significant weight loss — then a tummy tuck is a good fit. Loose or sagging skin is common after you’ve lost a lot of weight or following pregnancies, and a tummy tuck tightens up connective tissues in your abdomen as well as the skin around your midsection.

Recovery times

The recovery times for each of these cosmetic surgeries are different, and that’s another factor in deciding which procedure is right for you.

After liposuction, you should avoid strenuous activities for at least one month, and you need to wear a compression garment under your clothing for up to six weeks.

Most patients can resume their normal activities about six weeks after a tummy tuck. You also must wear a compression garment for several weeks following the surgery.

Combining procedures for best results 

If you want to get rid of both fat deposits and excess skin, combining the two procedures is a popular option. Studies have shown that combining a tummy tuck with liposuction increases the satisfaction rates of patients because doing so both removes extra fat deposits and improves the appearance of the skin.

Get expert advice on what to do next 

Exploring your options with an experienced plastic surgeon is vital for having satisfying results and a smooth, easy recovery. If you live near Pasadena, California, our board-certified plastic surgeon can help you determine which procedure works best for your goals and whether you’re a good candidate.

Schedule an appointment at Pasadena Plastic Surgery today by calling our office or using our online booking tool to get expert advice and the abdomen of your dreams.

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