Tummy tuck and liposuction are both very popular body contouring procedures. However, many people don’t understand the difference between the two and aren’t sure which might be best to address their concerns. Here is a more in-depth explanation of what makes these procedures unique and how to know if you’re a candidate for one or both of them.
What Is Liposuction?
Before you can know whether or not you’re a candidate for liposuction or a tummy tuck, you have to understand how they’re different and what each of them does. Liposuction involves the targeted removal of fat using suction. This body contouring procedure is commonly performed on the stomach, hips and thighs but can also be effective in slimming some surprising places such as the cankles, upper arms and under the chin.
The ideal candidate for liposuction has skin with a good elasticity that will conform nicely to the new, slimmer figure once the fat is removed. Contrary to what many believe, liposuction isn’t a weight loss surgery and it isn’t capable of helping you reach your weight loss goals. Liposuction is intended to remove specific pockets of fat that stubbornly remain despite a healthy diet and consistent exercise. Instead, it is a body contouring procedure that can improve the curves, proportions and silhouette of the body.
What Is a Tummy Tuck?
Abdominoplasty, or tummy tuck, is a procedure that removes the saggy skin from the stomach and tightens the underlying abdominal muscles. The best candidates for a tummy tuck have loose stomach skin or separated abdominal muscles which prevent them from having a flat midsection. While liposuction targets unwanted fat, a tummy tuck focuses on removing excess skin and tightening the remaining skin to create a firmer stomach. A tummy tuck can also repair diastasis recti, which is when abdominal muscles become weakened or separated as a result of pregnancy or weight gain.
During a tummy tuck, an incision is made very low in the abdomen, above the pubic area. Another incision is made higher on the stomach to remove the section of excess skin. The remaining skin is pulled down and reattached, and the belly button is repositioned to a more natural location. The stomach muscles are also tightened, and any separation in the abdominal wall is repaired. The result is a flatter, firmer stomach with a scar that is easily hidden in swimwear and underwear.
When a Combination of the Two Is Best
Sometimes one of these procedures is enough to address your concerns and provide the improvement you’d like. However, some people can benefit from a combination of these procedures when a more comprehensive approach is needed. This is often true for women who’ve been pregnant or people who’ve experienced significant weight loss, but can also apply to anyone who has excess stomach skin and fat deposits that they just can’t get rid of.
For the right candidate, combining liposuction and a tummy tuck into one surgery can offer an overall improvement. By combining the two procedures, your plastic surgeon can smooth and flatten the stomach and use liposuction to sculpt new contours for a beautiful new figure. These two procedures can complement one another and deliver a more satisfactory result for many people.
The Importance of Surgical Skill
Both liposuction and a tummy tuck will deliver the most beautiful outcome when performed by a highly-skilled and experienced plastic surgeon who specializes in body contouring. In order to get the best results, choose a plastic surgeon with the right combination of an artistic eye and a deep understanding of how to achieve the best body contours and proportions.
The more you know about your body, the better you can control the final outcome. Whether you're interested in surgery, non-surgical procedures, or diet and exercise, keep up to date with the latest information.
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