How Long Should You Wait After Smartlipo to Have a Tummy Tuck?

Doctor Answers 13

How Long Should You Wait After Smartlipo to Have a Tummy Tuck?

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Regarding:"How Long Should You Wait After Smartlipo to Have a Tummy Tuck?"

Before answering your question, let's review what you HAD done and what you are GOING TO have done.

Despite the fluff press, liposuction is NOT a gentle operation. Inserting and pulling a sterile steel tube hooked to a high power vacuum source through your fat layers is traumatic. As the fat is literally ripped off inflammation follows. (With many women complaining why they are not seeing results after having had X number of liters of fat removed). In YOUR case, just before the fat was sucked off, it was literally cooked with a hot fiber (made hotter by the energy of the laser). The heat cooked, fat, nerves and blood vessels - all in an effort to shrink the overlying tummy skin (a scientifically not yet proven modality) - and the resulting debris was suctioned all. ALL of this results in longstanding swelling inflammation and compromise of the blood supply to the overlying skin.

A Tummy Tuck involves separating the tummy skin and fat from the underlying muscles followed by tightening the abdominal muscles, removing all excess skin and bringing the belly button out in its midline position.

THE QUESTION is - WHEN will the tummy skin whose blood supply was somewhat damaged by the liposuction and heat of the laser AND which is still swollen - regain its blood supply to allow a safe lifting off the muscles without dying AND lose the inflammation and rigidity allowing the true extent of skin looseness to be assessed and skin removed?

Personally, I like to wait and assess each patient's progress and see when the skin resumes its pliability. The wait can vary from 2 to over 6 months and depends on the patient.

Hope this helps.

Dr. Peter Aldea

Memphis Plastic Surgeon

Come right on in....

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

As long as at least a few weeks (minimum of 3) have passed, my practice is to proceed at any time with the tummy tuck.  You'll see a huge variation in opinions, but that is exactly what they are.  According to research studies, we know that the abdominal flap has developed new routes of circulation by 14 days.  Because it is safe to perform liposuction simultaneously with a tummy tuck (no established data with SmartLipo), I wouldn't see any reason for a long delay.

I too am curious whether your SmartLipo was performed by a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon who was able to fully counsel you regarding all of your options.  If not, perhaps you did not indeed receive full informed consent before the liposuction - - this is a concern that Plastic Surgeons have with non-core physicians performing procedures outside of their scope of training; i.e., they are unable to fully counsel you because they have a much more limited experience and knowledge base from which to base their discussions with you.

Best of luck!

Having had Slim Lipo in the past, I have some scar tissue. Not sure how to tell. Will a Tummy Tuck still look good?

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}
I could share more idea of your situation if I had front and side pics of your belly, but it seems like the skin has lost its elasticity and tummy tuck will be the right solution for you. If your weight is stable and you are in good health condition, you can have very good results with the experienced surgeon. The liposuction you have had previosly will not affect your tummy tuck procedure or healing process. It would be better to wait around 6 months to year.  wish you good luck!

Ercan Karacaoglu, MD
Turkey Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

You might also like...

Tummy Tuck or Abdominoplasty After Another Surgery Like Liposuction and How Long to Wait

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}
A tummy tuck or abdominoplasty can be done as soon as the swelling from the prior procedure has completely settled.Technically it can be done as soon as a few weeks form a blood supply and safety stand point but if there is still swelling present, the results may be sub optimal because we cannot get everything into place as easily.In general, I would tell you that a minimum of 3 months is needed in between a liposuction procedure and an abdominoplasty or tummy tuck.

If you are considering a tummy tuck make sure you discuss a rapid recovery, NO drain tummy tuck to minimize your down time.

I hope that helps.

Best regards.

Brian Windle, MD
Kirkland Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 64 reviews

Tummy tuck after Smartlipo (laser lipolysis)

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

I am not certain that anyone has a definitive answer but I recently did a neck liposuction 3 months after a Smartlipo to the neck and was impressed with the hard scar tissue that had developed. Based on this experience, I would wait at least 6 months and more likely closer to a year after Smartlipo to perform a tummy tuck

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 86 reviews

Smart lipo was wasted lipo

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

It sounds like you were sold a bill of goods to have lipo before having the tummy tuck.  I hope you were told that the two procedure do not do the same thing and you can not get tummy tuck results with liposuction.  Smart lipo was just a more expensive form of liposcution.   Since you have already done the liposuction I would say you should wait three months before doing a tummy tuck. 

Best Wishes

Dr. Peterson

Marcus L. Peterson, MD
Saint George Plastic Surgeon

Tummy Tuck after Smart Lipo

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Smart liposuction or any liposuction produces some areas of firmness that need to soften. The time period for this to occur is 3-6 months.  This will allow you to get maximum benefit from your tummy tuck.

Dr. ES

Wait long enough after Smartlipo before Abdominplasty

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

How long you have to wait to safely do abdominoplasty after Smartlipo depends on what areas were treated with the Smartlipo.  It appears from the other answers that the assumption was you had abdominal Smartlipo.  If you did have abdominal Smartlipo, I would agree with the recommendation that you wait at least 3 months, or longer if the area hadn't returned to normal.  It can be bad to re-operate on an area too soon.

If you had Smartlipo on a different area, I recommend you wait until you know that area is healing without a complication.  Depending on the area treated, that may be as little as two to four weeks.  Your surgeon will have to help make that decision.

Daryl K. Hoffman, MD
San Jose Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Wait After Smartlipo to Have a Tummy Tuck

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

As one of the National trainer of Smart Lipo, I recommend at least 3 month wait to allow the lipoed tissue to fully heal and soften. Any time sooner may cause a complication as skin or fat necrosis. Be careful out there. Never be in a hurry. 

Must wait for the swelling to resolve before having tummy tuck after liposuction

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

If you have recently had liposuction, I would suggest waiting at least a month before having a tummy tuck.  However, it is unusual to have a tummy tuck after liposuction.  If you need a tummy tuck, you likely needed it before the liposuction and should have had it all at the same time.  If the liposuction was on a different part of your body, then could proceed with tummy tuck after just a few weeks.  Good luck with your procedure.

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.