If I Do Liposuction First,then Heal,will It Be Easier to Determine What Kind of 4 Tummy Tuck Options That Docs Have Suggested?

I have been recommended a Hybrid tummy tuck with a mini, tummy tuck with vertical incision, full tummy tuck, and possibly that I might not need tummy tuck at all after lipo. Wow, this is making it very hard on me because I want a great improvement with as little scarring if that can be done. Of course I want it done right the first time! This is my body and my money. Treat me as if I am your wife or daughter docs! Help!!!

Doctor Answers 6

What tummy tuck is best for you

is often determined by what your goals are and what kind of tummy we are starting with.  You should be able to get your surgeon to tell you what he/she thinks will work best for you in achieving your goals.  If he/she cannot, that is a sign you should be finding another doctor. 

Liposuction is often used to help thin the overlying fat layer and can be done with a tummy tuck (google lipoabdominoplasty) at the same time.  If the muscles are stretched out, a muscle plication is often done at the same time.  If there isn't a large amount of fat, a traditional tummy tuck is done.  There are also anchor incisions if you have a lot of loose skin as in massive weight loss patients and are accepting of the vertical scar.  So there are many options to choose from and your doctor should help you navigate your choices from having had the benefit of examinng you and listening to your concerns.  Good luck!

Redding Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

Which type of tummy tuck?

As the other surgeons have stated, it is impossible to give you specific recommendations without photos (minimum) or physical examination (best). With this being said, my experience with wanting "great improvement" the best option is is the standard tummy tuck. Lesser procedures typically yield lesser results. It does seem confusing with the several recommendations you have received. Find a well-respected surgeon and ask to see photos of their work and possibly discuss with previous tummy tuck patients.


Good luck. 

Brian J. Lee, MD
Fort Wayne Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Multiple options to achieve a flat tummy

Dear Nikobe,

Please understand that without photos or a physical exam, it is almost impossible to give you the best advice possible. Please consider re-submitting question with front and side views.

Just so you know: Liposuction alone cannot flatten an abdomen that has been stretched out by pregnancies or if you have intra abdominal fat.

In all my years of performing TTs, I have only used a vertical scar once.

Please make certain that you consult Board Certified Plastic Surgeons, any other so called 'cosmetic', or any other made up name...run!

Kind regards,

Dr. H

Gary M. Horndeski, MD
Texas Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 223 reviews

How to choose between types of tummy tucks

It is impossible to know which procedure would be best for you without knowing more of your history and performing a physical examination.  In general,

  1. liposuction is good at thinning out the abdominal fat layer, but does nothing toward correcting the abdominal wall laxity that frequently results from pregnancies or significant weight changes
  2. a mini-abdominoplasty is good at contouring the abdomen below the belly button, and can include liposuction of the upper abdomen if that is all that is needed above the belly button.  Abdominal wall laxity above the belly button is common in women who have had children, and is not corrected by this procedure.
  3. a full abdominoplasty is used to recontour the entire abdomen (ribs to pelvis), including tightening the fascia (incorrectly termed "muscle repair") and eliminating excess skin and fat.  Vertical incisions are almost never required, and can limit future clothing options (ie. they are not covered by most 2 piece bathing suits).

I would recommend consultations with board-certified plastic surgeons, and be sure that they explain clearly how their proposed procedures will achieve your goals.

Good luck.


Craig S. Rock, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

What type of tummy tuck

without an examination it is difficult to answer this question accurately for you specifically. I usually do not recommend liposuction first unless I think I can reasonably correct the abdomen. If you are very over weight then a debulking procedure is sometimes beneficial. If you have had multiple pregnancies then usually liposuction alone will not correct the issues.

Mini, full, or full with a T small incision all work. Picking the right candidate for the right procedure is where experience comes in. If all your issues are below the umbilicus then a mini will work. if you have above and below the umbilicus issues, then a full works better. If you have above and below the umbilicus but don't have enough skin to reach all the way down without a T, I make the T rather than make the long incision higher.

hope that helps. get other opinions until you feel comfortable.

Rick Rosen, MD
Norwalk Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 22 reviews

Choosing tummy tuck techniques

Unfortunately, without photos and a direct exam we can't answer this question adequately BUT in general:

1. no point in doing liposuction first then a tummy tuck later.  If you are overweight, lose the weight naturally, then do the TT

2. avoid any TT with a T incision if you can because the vertical scar is hard to hide and usually doesn't heal as well as the horizontal ones

3. don't be fooled into thinking that postpregnancy abdomens can get a great result with liposuction if you have muscle laxity, or skin excess or stretchmarks

4. realize that most folks need a full TT for the best result even if they wish they could get by with less

5. go with the best Am Board of Plastic Surgery certified surgeon, with the best results, who does lots of TTs,  who can show you photos of many many patients whose results you would wish for yourself

good luck with this!

Richard P. Rand, MD, FACS
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 67 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.