Tummy tuck or lipo? If you’re unhappy with your stomach, whether that’s due to stubborn pockets of fat that just won’t shift, lack of muscle tone or skin laxity, the big question is whether to opt for an abdominoplasty or fat removal with liposuction.
Although liposuction and tummy tucks often appeal to people with similar cosmetic goals, there are some significant differences.
Tummy tuck vs lipo: the ideal candidate
The tummy tuck is a surgical procedure that can address skin laxity, muscle tone and excess fat on the abdomen. It’s popular with both men and women, but it is particularly suitable for women following childbirth, as it’s often impossible to achieve a flat, tight abdomen after it’s been stretched during pregnancy.
If you are close to your ideal body weight, with good skin elasticity and muscle tone, but want to achieve a more sculpted, balanced appearance, then liposuction could be the solution. Although the fat is removed for good, putting on weight in the future can affect your results, so you should be committed to a healthy lifestyle.
Tummy tuck vs lipo: which is better
The right procedure for you will depend on several factors, including what’s concerning you about your body, what you’re hoping to achieve and physical considerations that our plastic surgeons will assess during your consultation.
A tummy tuck can remove lax skin and tighten the stomach muscles that may have become stretched due to childbirth, weight fluctuations or gravity. The extent of skin and muscle laxity determines whether a full tummy tuck – one that extends the entire length of the abdominal wall – is required. Alternatively, a mini tummy tuck that targets just the lower belly might achieve the desired result.
If your concern is excess fat, but your skin laxity is still good, then liposuction alone may be used to sculpt the abdomen. Liposuction also doesn’t just target the stomach; it can permanently reduce fat on the arms, back, buttocks and thighs. Lipo can even be used on the face, eradicating a double chin.
Recovery is generally quicker after liposuction although it depends on how many areas are treated. The big difference is scarring. During liposuction, small incisions are made through which the cannula is inserted. In contrast, a tummy tuck entails a lengthy incision made from hip to hip, although it is positioned below the bikini line if possible.
Tummy tuck vs lipo: what to expect
During a tummy tuck excess fat and skin is surgically excised and the abdominal muscles are tightened and sutured into a new position. The skin is then redraped to your new contours.
Liposuction is still a surgical procedure, although it is often considered less invasive than a tummy tuck. Small, localised fat deposits are broken and sucked out with a cannula attached to a suction device.
Tummy tuck & lipo: better together
Many patients opt for a combination procedure to enjoy the benefits of both a tummy tuck and liposuction. To find out which procedure you’re best suited for, call us on 020 7432 8727.