Everyone wants a trimmer figure, and liposuction and tummy tucks are ways to achieve that goal. How to decide which one is right for you? Top Long Island and New York City plastic surgeon Dr. Arnold S. Breitbart explains the difference between these two popular procedures and who is the best candidate for each.
A minimally-invasive procedure, liposuction involves the removal of fat cells via a suctioning process. Dr. Breitbart often uses laser-assisted SmartLipo liposuction. After the fat is softened with the laser, a thin tube called a cannula sucks the fat out. The incisions required for this process are tiny.
Liposuction is not limited to abdominal fat, but to unwanted fat deposits on many areas of the body, including the flanks (love handles), thighs, knees, back, arms, and neck.
Liposuction is not meant as a way to lose weight. The procedure is ideal for getting rid of those stubborn fat pockets that are not responding to diet and exercise.
Liposuction is a less expensive procedure than tummy tuck. It requires little to no downtime afterward, whereas a tummy tuck is a more invasive procedure generally requiring about one to two weeks of recuperation.
The best liposuction candidates have localized areas of fat and relatively good skin tone. Once body fat is removed, firm skin returns to a normal shape relatively quickly. When skin is very loose, this may be better addressed with tummy tuck.
As a rule, liposuction is best suited for someone within 30 percent of their ideal weight, as liposuction is more of a contouring procedure than a weight loss procedure. While there are no age limits for liposuction, younger skin is more elastic and produces the best results. Candidates must remain committed to a healthy lifestyle after liposuction to retain the benefits.
Formally known as abdominoplasty, tummy tuck involves the removal of excess skin and fat, with tightening of the abdominal muscle. Tummy tuck directly addresses loose skin and weak abdominal muscles, which is not the case with liposuction. When healed, the patient boasts a firmer, smoother abdomen.
The extent of the tummy tuck depends on the individual patient.
Expect to take one to two weeks off work after your surgery. As with any abdominal surgery, you may have to wait six to eight weeks before resuming vigorous exercise.
Tummy Tuck Candidates
Those in good health who do not smoke are the best tummy tuck candidates. Most patients undergoing tummy tuck have skin and muscle laxity as a result of prior pregnancy or weight loss. Obese individuals are not good candidates, as a tummy tuck is not a weight-loss procedure.
For More Information, Contact Dr. Arnold S. Breitbart
If you would like more information about liposuction, tummy tuck and other plastic surgery procedure, schedule a consultation with top Long Island and New York City plastic surgeon Dr. Arnold S. Breitbart. After an assessment, he will discuss your options and answer all of your questions.