How do I know if I need a Tummy Tuck or just Liposuction? (Photo)

I'm a 39-year-old mother of 1 premature child whom I had at 6mo., vaginally, w/ him weighing only 2lbs. I'm not sure if there was any damage done to my muscles abdominally therefore I don't know if I need a Tummy Tuck or Liposuction. Either procedure will be completed with a Brazilian butt lift. I eat healthy & work out every day yet cannot seem to lose this mommy pouch of fat in my stomach area. Please, sound advice would be much appreciated so I can move forward with my decision.

Doctor Answers 15

Liposuction or Tummy Tuck

There are pros and cons to each surgery, and a physical exam is really necessary to asses your degree of laxity. If everything is quite firm liposuction may be okay, but of things already feel a little loose you may be left with hanging skin. A tummy tuck does not require muscle plication if there is no diastasis, but the skin and fat removal can give a more dramatic result that liposuction alone. You may want to get a couple of opinions. 

Denver Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

How do I know if I need a Tummy Tuck or just Liposuction?

Thank you for your question.

Preparation :

Tummy Tuck operation is performed under general anesthesia and it takes to perform the procedure nearly 3 hours when it is performed by a team of plastic surgeons. It is really important to decrease the operation duration to give less anesthesia to the patient yielding a better postoperative period to the patient. You will be advised not to eat 6 hours before the surgery and that is all! You will get a physical examination by your surgeon and anesthetist. After the examination; we will prepare you for the surgery. You will receive a sedation in order to reduce the preoperative anxiety and fell yourself more comfortable.


Variations :

If you have excess fat and skin tissue in any other parts of your body then different operations can be also performed in order to achieve a better result. Liposculpture, arm lift, neck lift, tight lift and Butt Reshaping surgeries can also be combined with Tummy Tuck operation.

Bulent Cihantimur, MD
Turkey Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 90 reviews

Tummy Tuck versus Liposuction

I would suggest you address this question to a plastic surgeon who has had the opportunity to examine you in person. The physical exam will be key in providing you with the best options to achieve your goals.

Bryan G. Forley, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Liposuction versus Tummy Tuck

You would need to be examined and your goals determined. You could potentially have either procedure or both. Visit a few ABPS certified/ASAPS member surgeons.
Best of luck

Gerald Minniti, MD, FACS
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 89 reviews

Liposuction vs tummy tuck a question of skin tone

With liposuction, the skin needs to have enough elasticity to shrink smoothly, and that can only be assessed by physical exam. If you have stretch marks, it is less likely that lipo alone will be the best solution.

Richard Baxter, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 52 reviews

Tummy tucks

great question, because both liposuction and tummy tucks are great procedures. liposuction is limited to the fatty tissue only. if there is loose skin and/or loose muscles(diastasis) then a tummy tuck will give a flatter tummy. i would suggest you see a board certified plastic surgeon in person to evaluate how loose the skin is , so that you can precede with the best procedure for YOU. best of luck. 

Michael R. Whetstone, MD
Irving Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 21 reviews

Tummy Tuck or just Liposuction?

There are a variety of procedures that can produce a good cosmetic result in the appropriate patient: liposuction, a mini tummy tuck, a modified with an umbilical float, or a variety of a full abdominoplasty. All of the tummy tuck variations may, or may not, include tightening of the muscle and liposuction. Generally if there is significant loose skin above the umbilicus (belly button), a full tummy tuck will result in a greater correction and better outcome.

Keep in mind that following the advice from a surgeon on this or any other website who proposes to tell you exactly what to do based on two dimensional photos without examining you, physically feeling the tissue, assessing your desired outcome, taking a full medical history, and discussing the pros and cons of each operative procedure would not be in your best interest. I would suggest you find a plastic surgeon certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery and ideally a member of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS) that you trust and are comfortable with. You should discuss your concerns with that surgeon in person.

Robert Singer, MD FACS

La Jolla, California

Robert Singer, MD
La Jolla Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

How do I know if I need a Tummy Tuck or just Liposuction

You can tell if the muscles need to be repaired by lying flat and then doing the firs p art of a sit up while feeling the midline of your abdomen. If there is a gap there, then the muscles would benefit from being tightened. I think liposuction of your abdomen will certainly remove the fat below the skin but it might leave you with a small amount of loose  skin on the lower abdomen. That can be treated with a tummy tuck at a alter date if so desired.

Julio Garcia, MD
Las Vegas Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

Tummy tuck vs lipo (BBL)

Based on your anatomy, it appears a tummy tuck would give you the best contour of your abdomen. This can be combined with a fat transfer to the buttock if you are in good health. Please watch this brief video which addresses this exact question.

Best wishes,

William Bruno, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 377 reviews

Tummy tuck or lipo? Best for me

 Thanks for the photos and your candid requests.  As a surgeon who is experienced in both procedures, I have many patients who pose the same question.  I always initially start with the gold standard for those people that have a weak abdominal wall and excess skin.  It appears that you have both; although having a formal consultation would determine that definitively. Having a weak abdominal wall and excess skin, especially if the skin demonstrates stretch marks, will not be addressed or improved with liposuction alone.  In those cases, I would recommend Abdominoplasty which involves tightening the abdominal wall with multiple rows of fascial plication and the removal of excess skin. I add liposuction to the flank and hip areas along with deep contouring to the upper portion of the abdominal flap to give you a more natural abdominoplasty result.  For patients that do not have the time to recover, and accept the limitations of the liposculpture with the potential to have the irregular skin contour from the lack of optimal skin tightening, then a liposuction procedure  is acceptable for decreasing the fat and improving your waistline.  Once again, the liposuction will not result in the tightest belly possible because the abdominal wall and the skin is not addressed. I hope this explanation Provides more clarity with your decision process. Make sure you see someone who has performed many of these procedures. With blessings on your journey!

Sean T. Lille, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 31 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.