I am travelling to Dominican Republic for Liposuction, Brazilian Butt Lift and maybe Tummy Tuck. I have consulted online with a few Surgeons and have had conflicting opinions. Two have said that they suggest I also have TT and two others said that just Lipo should be ok. I really do not know and would like some further advice. The last thing I want to do is go through the pain and discomfort of sx only to come away with an ugly, saggy looking belly. Please help. Thankyou.
Liposuction alone or with Tummy Tuck? (photo)
Doctor Answers 5
Liposuction alone or with Tummy Tuck?
Tummy tuck would seem more appropriate based upon the photos.
Find a plastic surgeon with ELITE credentials who performs hundreds of tummy tuck procedures each year. Then look at the plastic surgeon's website before and after photo galleries to get a sense of who can deliver the results.
Kenneth Hughes, MD Los Angeles, CA
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Tummy Tuck Yields More Dramatic Improvement with More Consistency
I recommend a tummy tuck over liposuction to improve the contour of the abdomen in most women, particularly if they have had children, have any visible stretch marks, or if there's any hanging of the skin prior to surgery. While liposuction can remove fat, it depends on the ability of the overlying skin to shrink to the new shape and does not change the tightness of the muscular layer at all. When the skin doesn't shrink properly, it can result in loose, hanging, or wrinkled skin. Based on your photos, I would agree with the surgeons who suggested that you would have a better improvement with a tummy tuck.
Lipo vs. tummy tuck decision requires in-person consultation
No one can give you a definitive recommendation about your question without seeing you personally, because the degree of skin laxity needs to be assessed as it relates to the thickness of the fat layer. (That is one of the difficulties in having surgery overseas.) You should perhaps be aware of a variation called lipoabdominoplasty, which is a tummy tuck where the fat is removed using liposuction before the skin removal. This would provide a good "donor site" for the fat needed for the BBL.
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Concerns about medical tourism?
The decision of which procedure or combination of procedures that you should undergo is not the key issue.
Having surgery at a reduced rate in a foreign country sounds appealing, but there are many concerns that you should consider. Generally, there is no preoperative direct discussion with the surgeon who is going to perform the surgery in order to establish any
reasonable doctor/patient relationship. There are often language barriers that can interfere with your care. Even if your surgeon speaks English, the ancillary personnel like the nurses and the anesthesia provider who are involved in your care, may not. The quality of hospitals outside of the U.S. varies tremendously. Some are accredited and inspected, others are not. Even if the hospital has reasonable facilities and the surgeon has training, which may not be up to the quality of training of a plastic surgeon certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, the quality of the nurses and others involved in your care may be very different from that in the United States. They may have little
or no formal medical education, training or credentialing.
There is usually little follow-up care. In addition, the general sanitary conditions often increase the risk of infections, including some that are generally rare in this country. There are major potential problems that may occur with traveling long distances just
before and after surgery, like dehydration and fatigue, but more importantly complications
including clots in the legs called deep venous thrombosis and clots to the lung which may be life threatening.
In most countries, if a problem develops, you will have little legal recourse and no ability to file a complaint either against the hospital or about the surgeon. If complications develop after you return home, it may be difficult or impossible to obtain care from your local physicians. If problems do occur, the cost of subsequent care can be far greater than the reduced cost of the original surgery. While there are well-trained physicians
in many other countries, I would suggest that you travel for pleasure or business and have your surgery closer to home.
Robert Singer, MDFACS
La Jolla, California