liposuction and tummy tuck surgery sydney

When you want to eliminate excess skin and fat then, yes, liposuction and a tummy tuck (abdominoplasty) are commonly performed together. The combined procedures even have a name—lipoabdominoplasty.

A lipoabdominoplasty may be the right choice when you have loose, sagging skin and stubborn fat you cannot move through diet and exercise. While separately each procedure has different goals, by combining them you can get better long lasting results

Understanding Liposuction and Tummy Tuck

After losing a lot of weight, pregnancy or just as you get older, you may have stretched muscles and excess loose skin in the stomach area. And, no matter what you do, you cannot remove the excess stubborn fat cells. Exercise and dieting no longer move you closer towards your body contouring goals. But you cannot decide whether a tummy tuck or liposuction or both is right for you.

Liposuction contours different parts of your body using suction to remove subcutaneous fat that sits under the second layer of your skin. This type of fat is often difficult to remove but liposuction on its own does not tighten your abdominal muscles or excess skin.

An abdominoplasty “tummy tuck” Sydney removes excess skin and tightens up loose or stretched abdominal muscles. The result is a flatter, more toned abdominal area.

So liposuction and a tummy tuck combined can help you to achieve your goals.

Eligibility and Consultation

It is important to consult an experienced specialist plastic surgeon, like Dr Steve Merten or Dr Robert Knight. Our plastic surgeons will determine if a lipoabdominoplasty is the best procedure for you during your consultation. They will listen to your goals and examine you. And then talk to you about your options, explaining each one so you can make an informed decision.

While the operation is suitable for most people, there are some reasons why you may not be a good candidate; for example, if you are:

  • Diabetic. You may need to have your diabetes under control before undergoing this procedure.
  • A smoker. You may need to stop smoking for a period of time or quit altogether before you can have this procedure.
  • Susceptible to bleeding. If you are susceptible to bleeding, you may be at risk of haemorrhaging.

Your plastic surgeon will create a personalised treatment plan so consult with him. He will let you know what makes a good candidate for these procedures, and whether it is the best option for you.

Break Down the Steps Involved in Combined Liposuction and Tummy Tuck

When having a lipoabdominoplasty, liposuction is done first. After you are asleep under general anaesthesia, your surgeon makes small incisions in the target area. Then the surgeon infuses the area under the skin with a saline solution mixed with analgesics. This reduces pain and bleeding. Then using a cannula, your surgeon sucks out the dissolved fat using a to and fro motion.

After completion, the surgeon will move onto the tummy tuck to remove the excess tissue and skin. They will tighten the stomach muscles to reduce the size of your waist, and then remove the loose skin in the area to give you a contoured result.

Advantages of Combining Procedures

The greatest advantage of a lipoabdominoplasty is that you do not need two separate operations to address the same issue. It reduces the risk of blood clots, seromas as well as blood loss. You will only have to recover once as opposed to having to recover from two different procedures. It is also a cost-effective solution when you have both procedures at the same time.

Potential Risks and Complications

While surgery is generally safe, it does come with the potential for risks and complications.

For a tummy tuck these include:

  • Damaged tissue.In some cases the deep fatty tissue may get damaged or die. Also, if you are a smoker, you are at greater risk of this occurring. If this does happen, it may heal itself or you may need further surgery.
  • Poor wound healing.It is possible that the incision may not heal properly or it can begin to separate. You are likely to have antibiotics both during and after your operation to help prevent any infection.
  • Fluid accumulation.You will likely have drainage tubes left in to reduce the risk of fluid accumulating under the skin. Do not remove them. Your surgeon will do this, usually at the first follow-up appointment.
  • Changes to how you skin feels.Because a tummy tuck involves repositioning the tissue in your abdomen, it can affect the nerves in the area. You may feel numbness and a reduced sensation that gradually improves as you recover.

For liposuction, potential risks and complications include:

  • Excessive loss of fluid
  • Delays in healing
  • Friction burns
  • Deep vein thrombosis
  • Nerve or skin damage
  • Numbness or a change in skin sensations
  • Change in skin colour or discolouration
  • Ongoing pain
  • Rippling or a baggy appearance of the skin
  • Cardiac and pulmonary complications.

Recovery and Aftercare

How you look after yourself after surgery, will dictate how well you recover.

To help your recovery:

  • Do:
    • Eat well. Good nutrition is important for your recovery.
    • Regularly take the medications your surgeon prescribes.
    • Take gentle, short walks.
    • Follow the post-operative instructions from your surgeon.
    • Sleep with your knees bent.
    • Wear clothes that are comfortable and are a loose fit.
  • Don’t:
    • Smoke or stay in a room filled with smoke.
    • Cough or sneeze if you can help it.
    • Do strenuous exercise or lift heavy objects.
    • Go to the gym before your surgeon gives you clearance.
    • Have hot baths.
    • Get stressed.
    • Laugh too much.

Contact us today to book a consultation with Dr Merten or Dr Knight for specialist advice on whether a combined liposuction and tummy tuck is the best solution for you.