Traditional Liposuction? Laser Liposuction? Or Tummy Tuck? (photo)

I'm a 28 y/o mother of 2 (both via C-sec). I'm 5'5" & 125lbs. I was 110 before my first pregnancy & gained a total of 65lbs, same with my 2nd. I workout on a regular basis, weight train & cardio 5-6 times a week. I've gained muscle & lost fat here & there for the past 3 years, but I can't get rid of my belly. My mother (we have similar problems) have an appt 4 consultation to see a doctor that's offering a special on liposuction. Is this the way to go or would laser lipo or TT be better for me?

Doctor Answers 24

Lipo or tt

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Your photos clearly demonstrate that you are a much better candidate for a tummy tuck than lipo.  The lipo alone will almost certainly give you very little improvement.  The appeal of lipo is understandable.  It is less expensive, easier to go through with less recovery, and involves minimal scarring, but is no bargain if you are not pleased with the result.  I think it important that you consult with a surgeon experienced with BOTH procedures. If you go to a lipo clinic, they will always steer you toward lipo, because that's alll they do.

San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Tummy tuck vs. Liposuction

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Your photographs show hanging skin and stretch marks.  Liposuction certainly would NOT do anything for the stretch marks and make the hanging skin worse.  The fact your doctor has a special on liposuction is irrelevant and should not be done.  You will be disappointed and you will require a tummy tuck afterwards.  The second problem you described is the 65 lbs weight gain after pregnancies.  Unfortunately, with that amount of weight gain your abdominal wall has stretched and torn.  Just as you have stretch marks (tears in your skin), you also have torn your internal support layer which is called fascia.  The most important part of an abdominoplasty is strengthening the fascia.  This can be done with sutures but better results are obtained when it is augmented with mesh.  I recommend you have an abdominoplasty with mesh reinforcement.  This will help you lose weight, keep the weight off, eliminate the stretch marks and give you the contour you desire.

Best of Luck,

Gary Horndeski, M.D.

Gary M. Horndeski, MD
Texas Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 230 reviews

Tummy tuck will give a nice result; not liposuction

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Based on the loose skin and stretch marks of your lower abdomen I would recommend a tummy tuck. Do not let anyone perform liposuction of your lower abdomen. Please consult with a board certified plastic surgeon. Do not go to a place simply because they may be offering a special on liposuction.  Best wishes,  Dr.Bruno


William Bruno, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 411 reviews

For the abdomen, liposuction is not appropriate in your case.

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Your abdomen (thanks for the photos) shows loose, wrinkled, and stretch-marked skin. NOT excess fat. Liposuction (any variety) is NOT appropriate, even if someone is trying to "sell you" on laser lipo as being able to "tighten" your skin. It will not make a difference you feel good about, and your money will have been wasted, IMHO. Would you buy a dress that doesn't fit you, just because it's on sale?

You need a tummy tuck to deal with your loose skin, and a mini will also fall short of your expectations. If you wish, liposuction of the hip rolls can be done at the same time as the tummy tuck, and will not need additional incisions as it can be done through the tummy tuck incisions near your hip bones.

Don't try to achieve optimal results with suboptimal choices! (Don't choose the wrong operation just because it's on "sale!") Best wishes!

Richard H. Tholen, MD, FACS
Minneapolis Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 263 reviews

Liposuction or Tummy Tuck?

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Thank you for the question and pictures.

I think you are an excellent candidate for tummy tuck surgery. You are not a candidate for liposuction surgery alone.  The  tummy tuck procedure would serve to remove the excess skin and adipose tissue from slightly above the belly button down to the pubic bone.  Muscle plication (repair) is usually helpful for patients who have had children and/or weight gain/loss.

Please make sure you do your due diligence in selection of a well experienced board-certified plastic surgeon.

Best wishes.

Tummy Tucks and Liposuction - Making sense of your choices

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From what I can tell by your photos (exam would give more information), you seem like a great candidate for upper tummy and hip liposuction.  have not seen significant difference despite hype and company claims that laser liposuction is better than traditional liposuction. Regarding the different types of tummy tuck procedures available : here are some guidelines on how to choose which is best for you: 

‘Mini” tummy tucks can benefit patients who have a small amount of excess skin and fat or protruding of the lower abdomen (below the belly button). This operation may be done under local anesthesia with sedation, on an outpatient basis. Liposuction may be used alone or in conjunction with a tummy tuck to benefit selected patients.

Mini-abdominoplasty tightens the lower abdominal wall and skin below the umbilicus, belly button, only (shortest scar).
Modified abdominoplasty addresses conditions where just the muscle wall or just the abdominal skin requires repair.
Standard abdominoplasty tightens all of the abdominal wall skin and muscles above and below the belly button. The scar can be altered or lowered to be hidden by most panty lines and bathing suits.  (Standard scar).
Extended abdominoplasty tightens the abdomen and the flanks or sides (longest scar extending around the flanks onto lower back.)

Liposuction/tummy tuck afer giving birth to two children

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You are a good cadidate for liposuction of the flanks (hip rolls ) and upper abdomen simultaneously done with a tummy tuck. The most effective liposuction is body contouring with liposelection technic ( using vaser technology ). This will definitely improve your troncal contour and tighten the skin of your abdomen. Abdominoplasty will improve but does not eliminate your strech marks. If you are not that much concerned about strech marks you can get by with a very effective vaser. 

Tummy tuck

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The extra skin you have and the minimal extra fat along with muscle tightening would best be treated with a mini abdominoplasty. In my hands I would do Vaser liposuction and full muscle plication and remove as much skin as needed. Your belly button may stay in the same place or be moved depending on how much skin laxity is present. Good luck and please see a  board certified plastic surgeon for your consultation.

Gregory T. Lynam, MD
Richmond Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 62 reviews

Lipo or tummy tuck? (photos)

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Great  front and side photos.  You have the type of body that I really like to work with, and would likely achieve (in my opinion) the best result with a fitness type tummy tuck.  Forget about lipo, you're not fat, and lipo will do nothing for stretch marks, and will worsen your loose skin.

You want a flat, curvaceous, fit looking abdomen, one that you would be proud to show off to other moms, at the beach, in a swimsuit.  Fitness tummy tuck is the way to go... check some of the abdomens (before & after in our gallery).  There are a few that look like you.

Steve Laverson, MD
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 50 reviews

TT corrects efectively and performs much better low an upper belly than any another procedure

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I council both procedures at same time the results will be wonderful i would  improve and dissapear more than 60 % of estrias, i  would not  go to laser  because it is much better traditional or vasser in your specific case

Ramon Navarro, MD
Mexico Plastic Surgeon

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.