Belly fat – we all hate it. Losing fat on your belly area is a common goal of any diet and fitness program. Yet no matter how much you restrict your eating or bust your butt working out, the belly fat remains.
To get rid of your stubborn abdominal fat, you may have considered cosmetic surgery. Popular procedures like the tummy tuck and liposuction are aimed at removing excess fat from the abdomen. You can use liposuction on other areas of the body, including the arms, thighs, and back.
This leads to an important question: Which cosmetic procedure is best for erasing belly fat from your abdomen, the tummy tuck, or liposuction? It helps to learn about both procedures to determine the answer.
How Much Belly Fat Can the Tummy Tuck Eradicate?
The tummy tuck (abdominoplasty) is indeed able to remove excess fat from the stomach area. The procedure results in a flatter tummy and is excellent if you have tried everything possible to lose that last bit of pudge without success.
The tummy tuck has an added side benefit. Many patients who seek out the tummy tuck have weakened abdominal muscles due to age, childbirth, or genetics. The tummy tuck can strengthen your abs, leaving your abdomen tighter with an improved contour.
Liposuction is ideal for erasing belly fat if you have small fatty deposits on your abdomen. It is good at reducing bulges caused by excess fat while giving your abdomen more attractive curves. Like the tummy tuck, liposuction can make your stomach significantly flatter.
As you can see, both cosmetic surgery procedures offer similar results. To help you identify which procedure might be right for you, it helps to understand the differences between the tummy tuck and lipo by comparing the two.
How are the Tummy Tuck and Liposuction Surgeries Performed?
After you have been prepped for tummy tuck surgery, which includes putting you to sleep using general anesthesia, your surgeon will make an incision along the bottom portion of your abdominal wall. With your abdominal muscles exposed, your surgeon will sew the abdominal muscles together if they have become stretched apart. The surgeon will pull the skin over the abdomen before removing the excess tissue and closing the incision. The tummy tuck takes around two or three hours and is performed as a single procedure.
Unlike the tummy tuck, when you undergo liposuction, you may only be sedated intravenously. Your cosmetic surgeon will also apply a local anesthetic to your midsection. When the area is thoroughly numbed, your surgeon will make a tiny incision along your abdomen. A thin tube known as a cannula is inserted into the incision, which the surgeon will use to loosen the fat cells. The surgeon will then use a medical vacuum to extract the excess fat before closing the incision. You may undergo a few sessions of lipo before achieving the intended results.
What do the Results of the Tummy Tuck and Liposuction Look Like?
The results of the tummy tuck are permanent unless your weight fluctuates, or you go through pregnancy. Both bodily issues can stretch out your stomach, undoing the results of the tummy tuck surgery.
Liposuction tends to give you a flatter and more proportional midsection. The fat cells that were removed will stay gone permanently, but lipo cannot guard against future weight gain. You can accumulate fat on your midsection after liposuction, just not in the same areas that were suctioned.
Are There Risks in Connection with the Tummy Tuck or Liposuction?
All surgeries come with a potential for side effects and risks. The tummy tuck and lipo are no different. Both surgeries are low risk but chances of experiencing complications do exist.
Possible complications of the tummy tuck include changes in sensation at the treatment area, the accumulation of fluid, and tissue necrosis.
With liposuction, the chances of risk increase the larger the area the doctor works on. Potential risks of the second most popular cosmetic surgery in the United States include numbness, fluid accumulation, and contour irregularities.
What is Recovery Like for the Tummy Tuck and Liposuction?
When you wake up following tummy tuck surgery, the surgical site around your abdomen will be covered with a surgical dressing. The surgeon will change the dressing several times for health and recovery reasons. Your surgeon will also provide you with a “belly binder” which is a compression garment that helps with circulation and healing.
You should be up and walking around within a day or so. The doctor will encourage you to walk to prevent blood clots from forming. Your surgeon may prescribe pain relievers and antibiotics to ease discomfort and reduce the chances of infection. The doctor may also place surgical drains within the surgical site for up to two weeks.
After six weeks, the healing process will be complete. You will still engage in follow-up appointments with your doctor so the doctor can assess you for proper healing. Your surgeon will advise you to avoid any positions that stretch your abdomen, such as bending backward, which can pull against the incision.
Liposuction recovery depends on the size and number of treatment sites. For belly fat removal, liposuction offers little to no downtime. Because the cosmetic procedure is performed on an outpatient basis, you should be back to your typical activity levels within 48 hours.
Your cosmetic surgeon will advise you to hold off on weightlifting and heavy exercise until he or she says it’s acceptable to proceed.
Which Belly Fat Buster is Right for You?
When it comes to removing belly fat, both the tummy tuck and liposuction can help you attain a flatter tummy. With the tummy tuck, you get the added benefit of stronger abdominal muscles.
The downtime may be a bit more intense with a tummy tuck, but it should pass quickly. Both procedures can give you the results you seek, but they may not leave your abdominal area toned. For tighter abs and slimmer tummy, consider pairing the tummy tuck with HD Lipo, which enables your surgeon to remove the superficial fat that hides your body’s musculature. The result is a more toned midsection, without downtime.
Learn more about the tummy tuck and lipo – and see if you’re a good candidate – by contacting Moein Surgical Arts in Los Angeles. We also help men and women throughout Encino and Glendale. You can schedule a consultation for the tummy tuck or liposuction with Dr. Babak Moein by calling (310)694-4486.