Karen M. Horton, MD answers:
Lipoabdominoplasty vs regular abdominoplasty for post pregnancy body?
Abdominoplasty and liposuction have different goals and outcomes
If you are a mother who has completed her childbearing, congratulations both on your wonderful family you have created and to entering the next stage of motherhood!
Many women find their abdomens have permanent changes following pregnancy, including stretch marks, loss of abdominal tone, excess skin and extra fat deposits that have accumulated since having babies.
Most mothers do not have complete recovery of their bodies after children.
Moms often seek rejuvenation of their tummy areas once they have finished having kids.
A "mommy makeover" surgical procedure should only be considered at least 6 months after the birth of your last child so that your body has the chance to recover as much as possible and to enable you to achieve as much as you can on your own, with a healthy diet and regular exercise.
Two main Plastic Surgery procedures apply to the post-pregnancy tummy:
Liposuction will remove excess fat in areas that are stubborn to weight loss, such as the abdomen, flanks, pubic area, and thighs. Liposuction will not address excess skin or stretch marks, and will not help to tighten abdominal tone.
An abdominoplasty or "tummy tuck" addresses both the inside and the outside of the abdominal wall, in a three-dimensional manner:
Tummy tuck surgery not only removes excess skin and fat from the lower abdomen (including some stretch marks), it tightens the muscles of the abdominal wall through "rectus plication" which "corsets" the fascia overlying your abdominal muscles together in the midline and truly decreases the diameter of your waist from the inside!
Depending on your particular situation, either liposuction or a tummy tuck, or both, may be recommended to achieve your specific goals.
Be sure to consult with a Board-Certified Plastic Surgeon with specific experience in these types of surgeries to learn more and to evaluate all of your options.