Lipo on abdomen, necessary for flanks too?

I am getting lipo on my abdomen in conjunction with a scar revision. I have some love handles and am wondering if it will look worse if I have a flat tummy but still have love handles? Should I go ahead and do lipo on the flanks also? I don't want to not love my body after going through all of this work, but worried about being under for 5 hours and the extra cost.

Doctor Answers 8


If you're going to have  liposuction, do all the areas that bother you.  If you leave something out, it will grow disproportionately and that "refugee fat" is nearly impossible to lose without more suction.  Adding one area like that (both sides of course) should only add a small amount of money and time to the procedure and you'll be much happier in the long run.

Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 39 reviews


Hi, Lizzytizz456

If you "have some love handles," I would recommend getting the liposuction of the waists/flanks as well.  Adding the liposuction of the flanks should not add more than 30minutes to one hour to the total operative time.  

Whether you are a good candidate for liposuction of the abdomen/flank should be based on examination of your body.  Since your plastic surgeon has evaluated you in-person, I would follow his/her recommendation.  If you have any concerns about the surgery/duration, please discuss them with your plastic surgeon prior to surgery.

Good luck.

Sugene Kim, MD, FACS
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 76 reviews

Comprehensive waistline.

Most often I feel the tummy and the love handle liposuction should be done together for a better outcome in reduction of the entire waistline. I call that a comprehensive waistline approach. I also used to see more buyer's remorse when the flanks/hips were not done during tummy liposuction. Speak with your surgeon about your concerns or seek a second opinion. Specifically, discuss the risks that have you so concerned with your surgeon before going under the knife. Best, Dr. ALDO

Aldo Guerra, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 202 reviews

Lipo of abdomen

Thank you for your question. Without seeing photos or examining you, it's impossible to give you any advice on what surgery you should have. If you're bothered with your love handles now, after your abdomen becomes flatter with liposuction your love handles will bother you even more.  I would recommend adding that to your procedure. Talk to your surgeon about your concerns. Good luck! 

Mehdi K. Mazaheri, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 34 reviews

Lipo flanks

Thank you for your question. It is common to have lipo to flanks along with abdomen. Nothing wrong. Please talk to your PS and this will not increase any complications rate.

Ven Erella, MD
Austin Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 32 reviews

Liposuction of flanks with abdomen

It is rare that the flanks are not treated at the same time as the abdomen with liposuction.  It only adds about 20-30 minutes to the procedure, which should only take about 1 hour.  The 5 hours you quoted seems excessively long, are you sure about the time?

David Finkle, MD
Omaha Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 75 reviews

Go for amazing results with VASER Hi Def, ThermiRF, ultrasound, fat grafting of the abdomen and flanks

This is tough to answer without pictures. The flanks are often combined with other procedures like the abdomen. I do recommend getting a hi-definition procedure. I use VASER HI DEF with ThermiRF, ultrasound and fat grafting to get the most fat removal, skin tightening, and contouring. HD contouring is much more complex, defining and can give the best in skin tightening, cellulite reduction, body shaping, and fat reduction. I recommend getting a formal consultation with a hi-def physique expert to go over your best options. Best, Dr. Emer

Jason Emer, MD
Los Angeles Dermatologic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 196 reviews

Treating adjacent areas

If you have a normal fat distribution and remove fat from the front of your abdomen then you will create an abnormal fat distribution.

In my practice I rarely if ever treat part of the abdomen without treating the entire trunk.

It inevitably leads to an abnormal fat distribution with the flanks looking disproportionately large.

Five hours seems like an awful long time for Lipo suction of the front of the abdomen even with the scar revision.

Each case should always be assessed individually and there is no single yes or no right or wrong general answer to your question.

As a general statement I generally never treat the front of the abdomen without addressing the flanks or hips and waist. The exception are people who have very strange fat distributions or have had previous surgery.


Mats Hagstrom M.D.

Mats Hagstrom, MD
San Francisco Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 19 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.