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What Are Possible Causes for a Stomach Not Being Flat After the Removal of 2000cc's? (photo)

I had liposuction of my stomach and flanks 16 months ago, but despite the removal of 2000 cc's my stomach is not flat. I'm not overweight (5'2", 135-140lbs), and definitely expected a flatter stomach after the removal of approximately 2 liters of fat. What are some possible causes on my ongoing belly bulge after lipo?

Doctor Answers (6)

Stomach not flat after liposuction

Liposuction removes fat but it does not give a flat stomach.  A flat stomach may never happen again after pregnancy or weight gain, and a flat stomach also requires on-going abdominal exercises.  Consult with a board-certified plastic surgeon or return to your surgeon to discuss any options going forward. Best of luck. 

Santa Rosa Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 15 reviews

Abdominoplasty Versus Liposuction


There are 3 major questions when improvement in the abdominal appearance is desired

1. is there loose skin?

2. is there extra fat?

3. are the muscles tight?

1 & 2 can mostly be corrected with liposuction. Smartlipo in particular may be able to tighten skin to some degree.

If there is significantly loose skin and muscles that are spread apart, liposuction may actually make the appearance worse. Rectus Muscle Diastasis occurs from pregnancy. It creates a bulging abdomen, even if there isn't much fat to pinch. The only way to treat this is with a tummy tuck. A bulging abdomen is more common in male patients because men usually store fat intra-abdominally, but this can also be seen in female patients as well.

A tummy tuck will likely be helpful in addressing your concerns.

Adam J. Oppenheimer, MD
Melbourne Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 60 reviews

Intraabdominal fat and muscle laxity hinder smartlipo results in some cases


ideally, you would be learning this prior to the procedure.  There is visceral fat and muscle laxity that can hinder your results.  visceral fat can be rid of by diet and excercise.  Muscle laxity would require a tummy tuck.

Marwan R. Khalifeh, MD
Chevy Chase Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 61 reviews

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What Are Possible Causes for a Stomach Not Being Flat After the Removal of 2000cc's?


Unfortunately your surgeon did not explain the two types of fat. The subcutaneous fat that is corrected by liposuction and the intestinal or visceral fat around your abdominal organs, that can not be operated upon. 

Darryl J. Blinski, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 64 reviews



At five feet two, I would like to see you at less than 140 pounds. However you may have retained fat excess skin or weakened stomach muscles requiring a tummy tuck

David A. Bray, Sr., MD
Los Angeles Facial Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

Smart lipo


It appears that you have either one or both of the following issues:

1- visceral fat

2- diastasis recti

You should certainly discuss this with your surgeon

Roger Bassin, MD
Orlando Oculoplastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 64 reviews

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.