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Tummy tuck, smart lipo or forget it?

I'm 56 and have always had a large stomach. I'm now 215 pounds and am considering a tummy tuck or smart lipo of the upper & lower abdominals and waist. I'm exercising and eating well but the weight is coming off extremely slowly. I'm redy to do something drastic and feel like its now or never.

Doctor Answers (8)

Tummy tuck, smart lipo or forget it?

+1
  Your height would be helpful to determine your BMI to assess risk.  Liposuction can sometimes be used as a tool in an otherwise healthy patient to jumpstart a weight loss program.   The tummy tuck is better performed at a safe, stable weight. 

Kenneth Hughes, MD

Los Angeles, CA


Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 203 reviews

Tummy tuck or liposuction is best done closer to your ideal weight

+1
Thank you for your question.  I understand how hardened is to lose weight.  However at 215 pounds it is unlikely that a tummy tuck will be able to significantly decrease the size of your abdomen because fat exist normally under the skin but also inside wrapped around your intestines.  Liposuction when you are overweight will result in loose hanging skin.  Your best option is to get help with your weight loss, get closer to her ideal weight before considering plastic surgery.

Brooke R. Seckel, MD, FACS
Boston Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Lipo

+1
be careful when you talk about drastic. At that weight you're not an ideal candidate for either of the procedures.here is a plan. Find yourself a responsible board certified plastic surgeon. Have a consultation.consider the options.then ask him or her how much better things would be if you lost a reasonable amount of weight before the procedure and then think it over again.

Sherwood Baxt, MD
Paramus Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

Tummy Tuck, Lipo or forget it

+1
Hello and thank you for your question.
You will have the best results if you are at your ideal weight. A woman who weighs 215 lbs may very well have a large portion of visceral (intra abdominal fat). Visceral fat is not amenable to suctioning. It can only be lost with dieting. I recommend that you see a board certified plastic surgeon in consultation to get more specific answers to your questions which can best be addressed after a thorough history and examination is performed.
Best of luck to you!

David Cangello, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 7 reviews

Tummy Tuck or Liposuction

+1
In general, liposuction removes fat almost anywhere on the body but doesn't tighten skin. Liposuction is body contouring.

A tummy tuck removes abdominal fat and tightens the abdominal skin. A tummy tuck contours the abdomen.

The best procedure depends on your main concerns and desires. The entire cost of a tummy tuck is $7800 which includes the board certified professional fee, b/c anesthesia fee, and Medicare approved AAAASF accredited surgicenter fee. Liposucton of three areas costs $4100 and >3 areas $6000.

Hope this helps. Best wishes

George C. Peck, Jr, MD
West Orange Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Tummy tuck, smart lipo or forget it?

+1
You really need to see a plastic surgeon in consult to get your question answered. General considerations for you in particular include:

being at a happy and stable weight preoperatively
understanding that fat beneath the muscles is not removed with liposuction or tummy tuck

Hope that helps!
CDK

Christopher D. Knotts, MD
Reston Plastic Surgeon

Tummy tuck, liposuction or Liposonix?

+1
Hi. It is difficult to say without photos which of these procedures would be best for you - if you have a lot of loose skin then a tummy tuck will give you the best result. If you don't have any skin laxity then liposuction or Liposonix, high intensity ultrasound which dissolves fat may be suitable for you. You should consult a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon in your area about which is best for you. Regards Dr Charles Cope

Charles Cope, MD
Sydney Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

Tummy tuck, smart lipo or forget it?

+1

 Based on your description, you may be a good candidate for tummy tuck surgery at some point.  You may want to check in with your internist to see if a medical condition such as hypothyroidism may be causing the difficulty dropping weight (if you haven't done so already). Otherwise, seeking consultation with personal trainers and/or nutritionists may be helpful to you. Getting closer to your long term stable weight prior to proceeding with surgery will improve the safety and outcome of the procedures performed.  When the time is right, seek consultation with board-certified plastic surgeons who can demonstrate significant experience helping patients in your situation. Ask to see lots of examples of their work as well.

I have also attached some postoperative “advice” I provide to my patients undergoing tummy tuck surgery:

1. Make sure you are doing the procedure for the right reasons (for yourself)  and that you have realistic expectations.  Be aware that an improvement in the “problem area” may not translate to an overall improvement in your life   situation.  You are bound to be disappointed with results of the procedure if your motivation for doing the surgery is not internally driven.

2. Time your surgery carefully; generally, it is not a good idea to have surgery done during or immediately after a stressful period in life (for example divorce or death of a loved one). The additional stress of surgery will undoubtedly be  more challenging to deal with if a patient's emotional reserves our already exhausted. Remember, that an improvement in your physical appearance will not translate to an improvement in your life situation.

3. If possible speak to patients who have undergone similar procedures and query them about the toughest times of their recovery period. Any practical hints previous patients can provide may be very helpful.

4. Make sure you are aware of potential complications that may arise how to reach your surgeon if necessary.

5. Make sure you have a strong and patient support system (several people if possible) in place who have time/patience to take care of you. Arrange for professional nursing if any doubt exists regarding the availability and/or stamina  of your caretakers.

6. Be patient with the healing process, understanding that it will take several weeks to months to feel “normal” again. It may also take many months/year to see the end results of your surgery.

7. Be prepared to distract your mind with things of interest such as books, magazines, and movies.

8. Expect less of yourself; do not go back to work, school or chores too early and let others take care of you (for a change).

9. Pick your surgeon carefully (a well experienced board-certified plastic surgeon) and trust in his/her advice. Keep in close communication with your surgeon and do not hesitate to communicate questions/concerns and the   emotional swings that you may experience.

10. Resume all medications that you were using preoperatively when cleared by your plastic surgeon and stop the use of narcotics and sedatives as soon as feasible after surgery.

11. Keep in mind the end results as you go through the tougher emotional times after your surgery.
I hope this, and the attached link, helps.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 722 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.