Can You Combine Liposuction with Tummy Tuck?

Combining Liposuction with Tummy TuckIf a protruding abdomen with loose skin is preventing you from looking and feeling your best, there are several options for cosmetic treatment. Two of the most commonly requested body contouring procedures for unwanted skin and fat on the abdomen are liposuction and tummy tuck. For many patients, a procedure that combines liposuction and tummy tuck provides the best result. Read on as New York City board-certified plastic surgeon Dr. Mark Schwartz discusses the details of the two procedures and explains when a combination operation is appropriate.

What Liposuction Accomplishes

Liposuction eliminates unwanted pockets of fat from targeted areas, including the abdomen. The popular fat removal procedure can also be used to improve other body areas including the back, hips and flanks. During the procedure, a series of very small incisions are made around the areas of concern. An extremely dilute local anesthetic solution is instilled into the area that is going to be treated.  The dilute local anesthetic is known as tumescent solution and helps avoid post-procedure pain and bruising.  Next, a thin, hollow tube called a cannula is inserted through the incisions to break up and remove the unwanted fat pockets and improve the body contours.

Although it is a great solution for unwanted fat in patients that have good skin elasticity, liposuction cannot treat loose skin or separated muscles resulting from diastasis recti. The best candidates for liposuction alone are individuals with elastic, taut skin and toned abdominal muscles.

What Tummy Tuck Accomplishes

Also known as an abdominoplasty, a tummy tuck focuses on removing excess skin and repairing separated abdominal muscles (diastasis recti). During the procedure, loose skin on the lower and middle areas of the abdomen are removed and the muscles are sutured together for a flatter and toned appearance. Stretch marks may be eliminated if they are located within the excised skin. Ideal candidates for tummy tucks alone are individuals who struggle with loose skin and separated muscles that cannot be improved with diet or exercise.

Is It Safe for Me to Combine Liposuction with Tummy Tuck?

If you are healthy, and work with a plastic surgeon who is certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, combining liposuction with tummy tuck is a safe option. A personal consultation with Dr. Schwartz is needed to determine whether it is appropriate for you to undergo a combination procedure.

When Is a Combination Procedure Appropriate?

A procedure that combines liposuction and tummy tuck offers a number of benefits and is particularly beneficial for patients who desire an hourglass-like silhouette. Here are three signs that you can benefit from a combination procedure:

  • You have excess fat and skin on the abdomen with muscle separation
  • You desire a slimmer or better contoured waist
  • You also have excess fat on the flanks, lower back, hips and/or waist

One potential drawback of a combination procedure is additional post-op discomfort in the treated areas. However, the discomfort is temporary, and most patients agree that it is well worth the beautiful and comprehensive results they achieve with a combined tummy tuck and liposuction procedure.

Ultimately the decision to combine tummy tuck and liposuction is a personal choice. Dr. Schwartz can meet with you to evaluate your aesthetic goals and to determine the best treatment. Please call (212) 737-9090 or email to schedule an appointment with Dr. Schwartz.