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Will Liposuction or a Tummy Tuck Give Me The Best Results?

LIPOSUCTION   VS.   ABDOMINOPLASTY

Many patients and physicians alike have difficulty deciding whether liposuction or abdominoplasty is the best procedure when both fat and excess skin coexist.  Generally speaking, liposuction is best when we need to remove a fair amount of fatty tissue from areas where it has accumulated over time.  This is often the case in areas such as the upper and lower abdomen, waist area, hips, upper buttocks, etc.

An abdominoplasty or tummy tuck is used typically when we have an apron in the lower portion of the abdomen and/or loose skin without a great deal of fatty tissue in the abdominal area, whether it’s above or below the umbilicus.  Abdominoplasty is most frequently needed after pregnancy where the tissue that covers muscles (fascia) has stretched out and relaxed.  This allows the abdomen to bulge resulting in the chief complaints of an abdominal “pooch or muffin-top and loose skin, whether it is an abdominal apron or relaxed wrinkled skin over the abdominal area.

The difficult decision, however, comes when a patient has a muffin top or loose abdominal fascia, excess skin and an excess accumulation of fatty tissue in the hips, upper buttocks, waist, upper back, and upper and lower abdomen.  In these instances, both  procedures may be needed to get the desired results. HOWEVER, I do not perform both procedures during the same surgical setting.  The reason for this is when extensive liposuction is performed, blood vessels can be temporarily injured.  It is necessary to perverse the blood vessels to maintain nourishment and a good blood supply to the abdominal flap (that is, the anterior skin covering the abdomen that is going to be stretched from the umbilicus to the pubic area). In such an instance, the best solution is to carry out liposuction as the first part of a staged procedure and then carry out the  abdominoplasty as the second procedure  once the patient has recovered from the liposuction procedure.

When patients visit our Champaign-Urbana area office for a liposuction (liposculpture) or tummy tuck consult, we do a very complete evaluation and combine that information with their goals, to determine which path would be best path to solve the issues they are concerned with. While both procedures might be necessary, in many instances, proper evaluation will yield a good result with only one procedure as long as the right one is selected to solve the primary problem, whether it be excess skin or excess fat.

 

Dr. G.D. Castillo, Illinois Cosmetic Surgeon

G. D. Castillo, MD

Cosmetic Plastic Surgery Center

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217-359-7508 Savoy (Champaign-Urbana)

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