Tummy Tuck vs Lipo: Which One is Best for Me?

tummy tuck vs lipo

There is nothing sexier than a smooth, flat stomach.  For many people, diet and exercise are enough to achieve this goal.  People who have been pregnant, experienced weight fluctuations, or are simply genetically predisposed to holding disproportionate fat on their abdomen, may need a little extra help getting the sexy tummy they desire.

Plastic surgery today offers many great options to drastically improve the abdominal area by creating a slim, flat, smooth tummy – including liposuction and abdominoplasty (or tummy tucks). However, both procedures are very different.  Which procedure is right for you?

Curious what it’s like to recover from a tummy tuck? Read this post. 


Liposuction is highly effective for safely removing stubborn areas of unwanted fat. It is an ideal solution for people who generally have good skin, good muscle tone and no excess, loose skin.

During the procedure, a very small incision is used to access the targeted area. The surgeon will insert a thin cannula which is used clean the area with saline and anesthetic solutions and loosed fat cells, which are then suctioned away with a surgical vacuum. The procedure is performed on an outpatient basis with general anesthesia. It takes from one to five hours, depending upon the size of the treatment area.

In addition to the slimming the abdomen, liposuction can be used on many other places of the body, including the sides (love handles), arms, chin, legs, and bottom.

While liposuction is far less invasive than a tummy tuck, it only removes fat. Liposuction will not eliminate excess skin or stretch marks, and it will not tighten loose abdominal muscles.


A tummy tuck, also known as abdominoplasty, addresses not only the unwanted fat in a person’s abdomen, but also the sagging skin, loose muscles and stretch marks associated with pregnancy, drastic weight loss and age.

The tummy tuck procedure starts with an incision across the lower abdomen allowing the surgeon to remove excess skin and tighten slack muscles. The incision is strategically placed to as inconspicuous as possible, hidden by underwear and bathing suites. The length of the incision is determined by the patient’s anatomy and the level of correction needed to achieve desired results.  Unwanted fat, skin and stretch marks are removed and weak, protruding abdominal muscles are repaired – leaving a tight, flat, smooth tummy.

A tummy tuck generally takes two to five hours and is performed on an outpatient basis with general anesthesia.


While both liposuction and tummy tuck are excellent body contouring procedures, it’s extremely important to determine the specific issues to be corrected.  For individuals who just need to improve areas of unwanted fat, liposuction is usually the best course of treatment.  If the concerns include excess skin or loose abdominal muscles, a tummy tuck may be your best option.

For more information or to schedule your procedure consultation, contact our office.

Curious what it’s like to recover from a tummy tuck? Click to find out.