Liposuction or Tummy Tuck- Which One Is Right for Me?

Conveniently located to serve the areas of Maryland, Virginia and Washington, D.C.

Posted on November 12, 2020 under Liposuction, Tummy Tuck

Are you unhappy with the way your tummy looks? It may be that you’ve just lost a large amount of weight but still have pockets of excess abdominal fat. Drastic weight loss and pregnancy can also leave you with loose and sagging abdominal skin that makes it difficult to truly appreciate your trimmer physique. Are you ready to reshape, refine, and smooth out your midsection? At Cosmetic Surgery Associates in Bethesda, MD, we provide both tummy tucks (abdominoplasty) and liposuction.

Each of these procedures produces excellent results. But which one is best for you?

Liposuction Is Less Invasive Than a Tummy Tuck

Liposuction may be the right procedure if you’re looking to eliminate excess fat around the abdominal region and refine your body when you do not have loose skin. Liposuction is great for eliminating stubborn fat deposits with a single treatment. In addition to being an effective way to get rid of unwanted fat at the abdomen, this surgery can also be used to trim and refine the hips, flanks, arms, thighs, and other areas. One thing to note, however, is that although liposuction empties the skin by eliminating unwanted fat stores, it is not a skin tightening treatment.

While liposuction is less invasive than a tummy tuck, it is still a surgical procedure and therefore requires a period of recovery. Compared to abdominoplasty recoveries, however, a liposuction recovery is significantly shorter and much easier overall. Many of our patients feel better within just a matter of a week, and most are able to return to work or their other normal activities within days. After three weeks, much of the resulting bruising and swelling will have abated.  However, it does take a year to see final results. At Cosmetic Surgery Associates, our doctors all take the recovery process quite seriously. We understand that a good recovery is essential for ensuring an optimum outcome. That’s why we’re always available to offer the guidance and support that patients require, and to monitor their improvements throughout the entire healing process.

Abdominoplasty Can Eliminate Both Unwanted Fat and Excess Skin

The fat removal provided by liposuction can be sufficient for helping some patients reach their cosmetic goals. Others, however, might need the benefit of excess skin removal. Abdominoplasty procedures are more invasive, but they are also able to address loose and sagging skin along with muscle laxity. These additional benefits are sometimes necessary for both those who’ve dropped considerable weight and those who have given birth. For people seeking cosmetic improvements in the abdominal area following bariatric surgery and pregnancy, liposuction and abdominoplasty may be recommended together.

Excess, unwanted skin and tissue can be excised from the lower and mid-abdomen with abdominoplasty. Tummy tucks additionally tighten lax muscles in the abdominal region so that the stomach can again lie flat. Following this procedure, patients will have scars that may extend from one hip to the other, but they will be placed very low, and be able to be hidden by a bikini and underwear.  Tummy tuck recovery times are longer than for liposuction alone, and generally a full two weeks is needed off from work.

People with strong core muscles tend to have the shortest recoveries. You’ll want to relax throughout the healing process by avoiding strenuous exercises and activities. However, it’s also important to remember that certain forms of gentle exercise can actually play a key role in expediting the natural healing process, and walking is encouraged starting the day after surgery. Full unrestricted exercise, including core workouts can be restarted after 6-8 weeks.  After approximately one year, scarring from an abdominoplasty procedure will have faded significantly. All remaining scars can be easily concealed with a strategically chosen bathing suit or other garment.

Having Abdominoplasty and Liposuction Performed Together

Both liposuction and abdominoplasty can be effective standalone treatments in many instances, but some patients opt to have both of these procedures performed together. We may recommend both procedures based upon your cosmetic concerns and your overall cosmetic goals. Liposuction can sculpt, refine, and reshape the abdomen and flanks, while abdominoplasty can address loose skin and loose muscles.

Schedule a consultation with us at Cosmetic Surgery Associates to talk about your aesthetic concerns and we’ll help you find the best treatment for your needs. Get in contact by calling or filling out an online form.

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Our Plastic Surgery Associates team includes Dr. Franklin Richards, Dr. A. Dean Jabs, and Dr. Keshav Magge. Each of our plastic surgeons is board-certified, and together they have over 60 years of combined experience. Drs. Richards, Jabs, and Magge are all highly qualified in procedures for the face, breast, and body, and pride themselves in providing excellent results through our state-of-the-art, Quad A certified operating centers