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Tummy Tuck vs Liposuction: How to determine which procedure is the right one for you

Tummy Tuck vs Liposuction: How to determine which procedure is the right one for you


If you’ve been fighting the battle of the bulge against love handles or muffin top rolls around your midsection that don’t seem to respond to your healthy eating and exercise regimen, you may be considering a surgical procedure to help you attain the lean, streamlined physique that you’ve worked so hard to achieve.


When patients come to see Dr. Bachilo at Glamour Plastic Surgery and Med Spa, they are often interested in one of two options: Tummy Tuck or Liposuction.


For those who are considering either procedure, here is some valuable info regarding both surgeries, as well as Dr. Bachilo’s recommendations.


What is the goal of Tummy Tuck and Liposuction procedures?


The most important thing to note about both the Tummy Tuck and the Liposuction procedures is that both are body contouring procedures that reduce fat; however, these procedures are not designed to achieve significant weight loss. Although, body contouring or body sculpting procedures do remove excess fatty deposits such as bulges and rolls, tone and streamline the torso, they do not result in significant weight loss.


How is a Tummy Tuck performed?


A tummy tuck is a surgical procedure performed under general anesthesia. Dr. Bachilo will carefully make a very low horizontal incision from hip to hip, generally camouflaged along the bikini line between your pubic area and belly button. This incision grants her access to your abdominal muscles, which she is then able to tighten by pulling them together and suturing them, creating a taut, flat abdomen.


Once the muscles have been pulled taut, she will pull and tighten the skin over the area, trimming away excess saggy skin and fat. She may also incorporate liposuction to sculpt the flanks and abdomen to create an hourglass shape. The procedure creates a flatter, smoother belly, and a smaller waistline, leaving a thin scar across the pubic area which will naturally continue to fade over time.


The results of a tummy tuck procedure are considered permanent as long as you maintain a healthy diet and exercise regimen. If you gain a significant amount of weight in the future, you may choose to consider a revision to your tummy tuck procedure.


Who is the ideal candidate for a Tummy Tuck?


A tummy tuck is ideal for any healthy adult who is within close range of their ideal weight, and has stubborn fatty deposits around the midsection, such as love handles, muffin top, or fatty bumps along the hips and abdomen that have not responded to diet and exercise. If you have sagging abdominal muscles and/or sagging skin along the midsection, as a consequence of aging, weight loss, pregnancy, or prior surgeries, you may be an excellent candidate for a tummy tuck, as long as you have no contraindicated health conditions. A tummy tuck will also eliminate unsightly flaws such as stretch marks from the surface of the skin that is removed during surgery.


Dr. Bachilo will evaluate your condition and medical history to make sure you’re in good shape for the procedure, and she may recommend that you suspend certain medications in preparation for your tummy tuck. To ensure optimal healing, you should also quit smoking before considering this procedure, as the ideal candidate should also be a non-smoker.


How is Liposuction performed?


Liposuction may be performed on almost any area of the body where you want to eliminate excess pockets of fat, lumps, or bulges. You may choose to get liposuction on your abdomen, back, thighs, and/or upper arms, and even to eliminate a double chin.


During the liposuction procedure, Dr. Bachilo will inject a formula consisting of a local anesthesia with a saline solution into the fat cells in the target area, breaking them down into a liquid form. Then, she will then create a tiny incision through which a cannula, or thin tube similar to an IV needle, is used to extract the fat from the target area by means of a gentle vacuum suction process. The procedure produces a more sculpted and streamlined physique, with some skin tightening benefits.


While liposuction removes fat cells permanently, the procedure does not prevent future weight gain, so you must maintain your new physique by maintaining a healthy diet and regular exercise regimen.


Who is the best candidate for Liposuction?


As in the case of a tummy tuck, the ideal candidate for a liposuction procedure should be within close range of their ideal weight. The must have overall good health and no contraindicated conditions. Any healthy adult who wants to eliminate fatty deposits that are not responding to diet or exercise is probably an excellent candidate for liposuction. As with any surgical procedure, Dr. Bachilo must assess your overall health, any medications that you are currently taking, and recommend that you quit smoking as you prepare for the procedure.


What are the main differences between a Tummy Tuck and Liposuction?


A tummy tuck is a more invasive surgical procedures than liposuction, but also produces far more dramatic results. While liposuction only extracts excess fat from the target area, a tummy tuck tightens and reconstructs the underlying abdominal muscles, while also removing excess fat and trimming away excess sagging skin along with flaws such as scars, stretch marks, and other surface imperfections that may be present in the skin that is removed during surgery, while also tightening the remaining skin.


Unlike a tummy tuck, liposuction only removes fatty deposits, but does not remove excess skin, nor does it tighten underlying abdominal muscles; however, liposuction is a less invasive procedure than a tummy tuck, and produces virtually no scarring, while requiring a shorter recovery period.

Which should I choose: a Tummy Tuck or Liposuction?


If you are close to your ideal weight, have no sagging muscles or skin, and just want to get rid of some fatty bumps and bulges along your midsection, liposuction may be all you need.  But if you want to totally rejuvenate your midsection, tighten the abdominal muscles, remove excess skin and any imperfections in that skin such as stretch marks, while also reducing the circumference of your waistline, Dr. Bachilo will likely recommend a tummy tuck to achieve the most optimal results.


Can a Tummy Tuck be combined with Liposuction?


Actually, combining these two procedures may be an excellent option in many cases, as seen in Total Shape, the tummy tuck provides the muscle and skin tightening benefits to rejuvenate the midsection, while liposuction may be used to remove to further smoothen and contour the area after the tummy tuck surgery. You may also choose to have liposuction in areas such as the back and hips to further enhance the tummy tuck procedure.


How can I learn more about which procedure is right for me?


If you’re ready to rejuvenate your physique with a body contouring procedure such as a tummy tuck or liposuction, we will be happy to help! Contact our Houston-based office and schedule your initial consultation with Dr. Bachilo to start your journey toward a leaner and trimmer physique today!



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