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Liposuction versus Tummy-Tuck

Posted on Friday, March 23rd, 2012 by Dr. Babak Dadvand

Liposuction versus Tummy-Tuck
One of the more common things I see in my office is a patient who comes in for a consultation for liposuction of their belly, but really needs a tummy-tuck (the opposite of this also happens, but not as often). So how do you know if you are a candidate for liposuction or tummy tuck? These operations are dramatically different, from the incision to the recovery. To answer this you have to look at the abdomen as having three layers: muscle, fat, and skin. Liposuction directly addresses one of these layers(the fat layer) where a tummy-tuck addresses all three. So, If you look in the mirror and have loose, excess skin, excess fat, and loosening of the muscles (known as diastasis), you are not going to be a good candidate for liposuction.

The success of liposuction relies on two things: 1) removing the fat and 2) having the skin tighten and re-drape. If the skin is loose or damaged (e.g. stretch marks, rippling), performing liposuction might lead to more hanging skin. In this case some form of skin tightening surgery, whether it be a full or mini tummy-tuck, is in order.

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