Tags: tummytuck | liposuction | abdominoplasty | risks | recovery | scar

Abdominoplasty (Tummy Tuck) and Liposuction: Risks and Benefits

Wednesday, 09 April 2014 01:32 AM

Abdominoplasty, commonly known as a tummy tuck, is done for managing obesity. People opting for such procedures should understand what tummy tuck means and the benefits and the risks associated with this procedure. If the benefits of reducing obesity outweigh the risks and complications associated with abdominoplasty, only then should one consider going in for the tummy tuck procedure. People generally go for abdominoplasty if recovery from obesity is not possible through diet and exercise. Abdominoplasty ensures recovery only from belly fat. Plastic surgeons are trained in performing abdominoplasty. The excess fat and skin are removed from the stomach region and the muscles are tightened in abdominoplasty.

This procedure involves many risks like scars, swelling, infections, etc. The risks associated with abdominoplasty are as follows:
  • Scars after the procedure—Scarring is a cosmetic issue for people. Though the scar may fade over months they never completely disappear. Cosmetic surgeons normally try to create the scar at the bikini belt to make it invisible after clothing.  Doctors prescribe some ointments to fade the scar. In women with previous Caesarean sections, the region of the already existing scar may be tried for abdominoplasty and, this way, no new scar is created.
  • Infection and bleeding at the site of abdominoplasty
  • Fat necrosis and risk of accumulation of fluids under belly skin
  • Damage to the nearby nerves causing numbness in the area of the nerve
  • Complications and risks due to anesthesia procedure
  • Discoloration of the skin near the site of tummy tucks
  • Deep vein thrombosis. The risk of blood clot going deep in the vein is linked with major surgery.
  • Lung and heart complications due to clot. Clots may pose risks for the lung and heart and can cause severe chest pain.
Abdominoplasty, or tummy tuck, can make a person bedridden for some days and recovery takes place slowly. Recovery from the symptoms of anesthesia generally takes from one to five days. The pain and swelling associated have slow recovery and the drainage tubes are removed after about one week. General weakness that sets in after the abdominoplasty finds recovery from a few weeks to about a month.


Liposuction is the technique in which excess fat tissue is suctioned from the body. Ultrasound and lasers are also used to liquefy the fat in liposuction. Unlike the tummy tuck, liposuction is an outpatient procedure. Liposuction can be done during the tummy tuck as well. The risks, scarring, and recovery problems associated with liposuction are not as many as with a tummy tuck. Bruising, swelling, and pain are the only risks associated with liposuction. Recovery is faster in liposuction. Liposuction is aimed at reshaping, rather than reducing weight. It is also useful for recovery from male breast enlargement and lipomas. Liposuction is not advised for severe heart patients and in people with clotting disorders. Studies show that people expecting recovery from being overweight have been disappointed with liposuction.

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Modern medicine offers solutions such as tummy tucks (abdominoplasty) and liposuctions for overweight people to manage thier obesity. The risks, scars, and recovery problems are different for the two procedures.
Wednesday, 09 April 2014 01:32 AM
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