Tummy Tuck or Lipo of Abdomen?

Most patients who have been pregnant will need tummy tuck and liposuction. The reason is that pregnancy (and obesity) will usually place excess fat in the upper abdomen which is very hard to get rid of. If that fat is not liposuctioned, there will be a step-down deformity.

Case 7: The patient here shows why liposuctioned is needed in addition to tummy tuck. The abdominal wall above the line will be joined to the wall below the bikini-line. Since the abdominal fat above the navel is much thicker than at the bikini-line, liposuction is needed above the line so as to avoid a “step-down” deformity at the bikini line.

Even if the difference in fat content between the upper and lower wall segments is small, the cosmetic result will be sub-optimal without liposuction.

Case 8: The patient shown here decided to have liposuction of the abdomen only. She knew that tummy tuck with liposuction was a better option, but did not have two weeks to recover. Liposuction of the abdomen removes some fat, but it will not remove extra skin, wil not make the stomach smaller, will not reduce appetite.

When liposuction of the abdomen is performed alone, we can’t get very aggressive because liposuction does not remove skin. This means that if we remove too much fat with liposuction, there will be skin sagging.

On the other hand, if we know that we’re going to do tummy tuck (skin removal0 after liposuction, we get more agressive with liposuction. Compare case 8 (liposuction only above) to case 9 below (liposuction and tummy tuck).

Case 9: This patient had agressive liposuction of the abdomen followed by tummy tuck. Liposuction that precceeds a procedure that will remove skin is always more agressive than liposuction alone.