Patients frequently ask me if I would recommend a tummy tuck or if they can get away with laser liposuction. This is a deeply personal decision, and needs to be based on your individual circumstances. Here are some questions I ask, before making my recommendations of which will make you happiest:
1. How tight is your skin now? How tight does it need to be to make you happy?
If your skin starts out moderately or severely loose, and especially if the elasticity of the skin is lost due to stretch marks, then laser liposuction isn't going to give you the tight stomach skin you may want. You need to decide if that's a deal-breaker for you.
2. Are you willing to take more than a few days off from work, exercise, and for young moms, from picking up your children?
Tummy tucks require anywhere from 7-14 days off from work, and you'll be instructed not to pick up heavy loads (like weights or babies) for up to 6 weeks following surgery. Laser liposuction has 1-3 days off from work, and 2 weeks off from high intensity workouts.
3. Are you willing to have a large scar?
Tummy tucks do leave scars. Sometimes those scars heal so that they're barely noticeable, but not all of the time. Liposuction leaves small scars, too, but they're much less noticeable since they're about the size of a pencil eraser.
There are other questions you want to ask when making these decisions, such as your budget and which doctor you want to perform your procedure, but the questions above should help you start to understand whether laser liposuction or a tummy tuck might be a better fit for you.