What Would Be the Best Option for my Stomach? Also, Do You Advise Against Going to Non-certified Plastic Surgeons? (photo)

I lost from 250lbs to 160lbs, and this is what I am left with.My weight loss occurred about 8 years ago, and regardless of exercise or diet, these areas don't improve. I am okay with my stretch mark scars. Would Lipo or Tummy Tuck handle these areas? Also do you warn against going to "Complete Laser Clinics"? They have amazing deals, but Dr (the lead) Isn't board certified as a plastic surgeon, so I weary of going there, but often consider it. I have heard he is an ER doctor.

Doctor Answers 16

ER doctors are NOT Surgeons

Thank you for your pictures.  I would always recommend seeing a BC PS.  You may be a candidate for either procedure but without a good exam it is tough to tell.  Seek consultations from plastic surgeons not ER doctors.

Dr. ES

Tummy Tuck and Liposuction-Choosing a Surgeon

I would want to examine you before giving a complete recommendation, but it does appear from your picture that you would be a good candidate for a tummy tuck along with some liposuction. Remember that liposuction addresses fat, but may leave some waviness if there is extra skin.  Only  a tummy tuck will address the issue of extra skin.  I would strongly encourage you to  do your research about any surgeon you consider. You definitely want to choose a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon.  The surgeon you choose is the most important decision you will make in having a good result.  It is not a good “deal” to get a low fee, but a bad result.  I would suggest that you find a surgeon who is a member of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery. Members of this organization are all board certified and are held to very high standards in aesthetic surgery


Dan Mills, MD
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

The best option for your stomach

After reviewing your photos and reading your history, performing a tummy tuck with liposuction of your abdomen and flanks would give you the best result.  Most likely you have significant loose skin on your abdomen from the massive weight loss, plus you have damage to the skin with all the visible stretch marks.  Therefore, if you only performed liposuction you are relying on the ability of the skin to contract back and take the shape of what you created.  I think that your skin would not contract back enough to make you happy.  The tummy tuck will remove all of the loose skin and allow you to tighten up the stomach muscles if needed.  In regards to going to a laser clinic or a non-plastic surgeon(sometimes calling themselves cosmetic surgeons), I think that is dangerous.  Plastic Surgeons go through a rigorous training process and are capable of handling all complications from any surgery they perform.  A non-plastic surgeon may offer you a cheaper price but at what expense?  Complications or an unacceptable cosmetic outcome from the surgery will wind of costing you more financially, physically and emotionally.  Just remember, not all surgeons are created equal.  Just because someone says they are a cosmetic surgeon does NOT mean they are a plastic surgeon.  Always check on the American board of plastic surgery website.

Jeffrey LaGrasso, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 109 reviews

The best option for your stomach

Congratulations in losing the weight and having maintained it for so long.  I think you will achieve a good contour with liposuction on the side (waists/flanks) and tummy tuck.  I would personally not go get a cosmetic surgery by ER physician.  You want to be evaluated and operated by plastic surgeons who have gone through a vigorous training process and have passed their knowledge base by exams.

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


The ideal solution to your lower torso contour problem is a lipoabdominoplasty with vigorous liposuction of your hips and flanks by an experienced board certified plastic surgeon.

Dennis Hurwitz, MD, FACS
Pittsburgh Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 32 reviews

Liposuction or tummy tuck

For someone who has lost so much weight yiu look great. Typically people who lose weight by dieting rather than by surgical means retain a better elasticity in their skin.

To me it looks as though you very well could get by with suctionig alone because there is not much sagging and your skin tone still looks good. I could only say this for sure b examining you. 

I would therefore at least see a board certified plastic surgeon for a consultation and even if they were to say suctioning alone was okay, I would rather have them do it than some " clinic ". You would need aggressive suctioning done under a general anesthetic.

Good luck.

Peter Fisher, MD
San Antonio Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 52 reviews

What Would Be the Best Option for my Stomach? Also, Do You Advise Against Going to Non-certified Plastic Surgeons?

I think that a tummy tuck coupled with liposuction of the sides and the back will give you a very nice result.  Find a plastic surgeon with ELITE credentials who performs hundreds of tummy tucks and liposuction procedures each year.  Then look at the plastic surgeon's website before and after photo galleries to get a sense of who can deliver the results.  Kenneth Hughes, MD Los Angeles, CA

Kenneth B. Hughes, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 496 reviews

Non certified ps for lipo or Tummy tuck

If something goes wrong and you need care, what will the ER physician do for you? As a board certified surgeon you get the highest level of care and more importantly an individual who can care for you in any circumstance. 

Raj S. Ambay, MD
Tampa Plastic Surgeon
4.3 out of 5 stars 35 reviews

Lipo vs. tummy tuck: plastic surgeon knows best

Your two questions are related, in that if you go to a laser clinic they will only offer liposuction because the doctor is not trained in doing tummy tucks. So before deciding, you should at the very least see a board-certified plastic surgeon so you will know your best option. If liposuction is the recommended option (unlikely after larger weight loss) then keep in mind that liposuction is surgery and make your decision based on how you would have any other surgical procedure..

Richard Baxter, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 53 reviews

Would you use a non certified surgeon

A surgeon who has completed training in the field of plastic surgery and demonstrated competence through a certifing exam is one of the best ways to have a safe outcome. Anything less we feel is taking a chance.

Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 43 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.