Liposuction or Tummy Tuck: Which Is Right for You?

Do you feel self-conscious about belly fat? Do you wish you had a slimmer waistline, but no matter how hard you try, you can’

Body image affects your mental and emotional health, not just how well your clothes fit. For many people, it’s a struggle to lose those stubborn love handles or belly pooch, even after you’ve lost weight and even though you continue to exercise. Fortunately, with the expertise and knowledge of aesthetic procedures and the latest technology, Dr. Rafael Cabrera and the team at Plastic Surgery Specialists of Boca Raton, Florida, offer liposuction and tummy tuck procedures to reshape your midsection, so you can feel more confident about your body. 

Whether you’ve lost your youthful, flat tummy as a result of pregnancy, or you’ve recently lost weight and have excess skin and flab around your waistline, there’s a solution that can help you achieve your aesthetic goals. When it comes to a flatter, more sculpted silhouette, which is right for you – a tummy tuck or liposuction?

We answer your questions, so you can have a better idea how each procedure works. At Plastic Surgery Specialists of Boca Raton, Dr. Cabrera, a plastic surgeon with more than 20 years of experience, customizes a body contouring procedure that best meets your individual needs. Here’s an overview to help get you started. 

What liposuction can do for your waistline

Liposuction is a great way to reshape your midsection when you have excess fat that doesn’t respond to a healthy diet and target-toning exercises. Liposuction removes fat deposits, reduces bulges, and improves the contour around your waist and belly. 

Liposuction, however, is not a weight-loss solution. It works best if you’re close to your ideal weight, but bothered by a jiggly belly or can’t seem to get rid of that annoying muffin top. 

What to expect during liposuction

Depending on how much fat you’re having removed, Dr. Cabrera may recommend a local or general anesthetic during your liposuction procedure. He makes small incisions in your abdomen to access the fat layer just beneath your skin. Using a thin, hollow, surgical tube called a cannula, Dr. Cabrera suctions out fatty tissue from your belly, love handles, and areas you’d like to appear more sculpted. 

After your procedure, you can expect some bruising in the treated area. You wear a compression garment to help control swelling and compress your skin, so it can conform to the new, slimmer contours of your midsection. In many cases, you can go home the same day so that you can rest and recover comfortably. 

As your body heals, you’ll notice a more contoured abdomen and waistline. Where fat once dominated, you’ll now enjoy a more slender physique. Your clothes fit better, and you can feel more confident in your own skin. 

What a tummy tuck can do for your waistline

A tummy tuck, also called abdominoplasty, may be an ideal procedure if you have not only excess fat around your belly, but extra skin, as well. Often, after significant weight loss or pregnancy, the skin around your abs doesn’t quite fit as tightly as it once did. 

Unfortunately, even though you lost weight or worked out after having a baby, your skin doesn’t always decrease in size or snap back to its pre-pregnancy state. Instead, skin loses elasticity and makes you look heavier by bulging around your belly. 

A tummy tuck removes this excess skin along with fat that surrounds your abs. Tummy tuck surgery can also restore your abdominal muscles if they’ve stretched or separated as a result of pregnancy or after massive weight loss. A tummy tuck is more invasive than liposuction, but it addresses fatty tissue, skin laxity, and muscle laxity all at once. 

What to expect with tummy tuck surgery

A full tummy tuck involves a horizontal incision between the pubic bone and your belly button. In some cases, especially if Dr. Cabrera is removing excess skin in your upper abdomen, he makes a second incision around your belly button. You’re under general anesthesia to keep you comfortable and pain-free throughout the surgery. 

If you have weak abdominal muscles, Dr. Cabrera repairs them, then trims away excess skin. He pulls your remaining skin tight, so it fits the contours of your body more closely. He creates a new opening for your belly button and closes the incisions. 

After your tummy tuck, you have bandages around your belly, and you wear a compression garment to reduce swelling and support your newly slender abdomen as your muscles, tissue, and skin heal. As you recover, you’ll begin to see your new, slimmer, tighter abdomen and waistline. 

Liposuction, tummy tuck, or both?

If you simply have stubborn fat that won’t budge from your belly, liposuction offers a relatively simple, minimally invasive remedy. However, if you’re also bothered by excess skin and weak abdominal muscles, then a tummy tuck may be the way to achieve the results you desire. In some cases, Dr. Cabrera may recommend liposuction to remove excess fat and tissue, plus a tummy tuck to remove excess skin. 

Liposuction and tummy tuck surgery are personal choices. We recommend which procedures are best for your desired outcome, so you can make an educated decision.

For a one-on-one consultation to discuss your body contouring concerns, contact our welcoming office staff by phone at 561-393-6400, or request an appointment online today. 

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