Thank you for your question. You will find that there are a variety of different types of anesthesia that can be utilized during tummy tuck surgery. I personally perform tummy tuck surgery in an out patient surgery center, and under general anesthesia administered by Board Certified Anesthesiologists. I believe that this type of anesthesia provides for a comfortable/safe/immobile environment to perform the relatively "extensive" procedure. Personally, I feel most comfortable having the anesthesiologist have full control of the patient's airway, thereby avoiding many of the potentially serious complications that may arise around the time of surgery.
I hope this, and the attacked link, helps.
Yes, epidural anesthesia can be very safe. As always, make sure you are with an experienced provider. Also keep in mind, that with any procedure, no matter how safe, there is always the small risk of complications.
Epidural anesthesia is more likely to be done with procedures below the chest wall. Our anesthesiologist would not like to be doing thoracic epidurals if other modalities such as general or local anesthesia with IV sedation were available. Ask your plastic surgeon to discuss with their anesthesia provider the best way to do your case. Good luck.