A tummy tuck tightens the lower abdomen, resulting in a flatter waistline. Liposuction of the abdomen or hips is sometimes, but not always, performed in addition to a tummy tuck. Both procedures cost thousands of dollars. The actual cost varies, depending on the cosmetic surgeon and expected difficulty of the tummy tuck, or for how many areas you wish to have liposuction.
During a tummy tuck (abdominoplasty) a cosmetic surgeon tightens the belly by surgically tightening the fascia—a layer of tissue that covers the abdominal muscles. During liposuction, a thin tube is inserted into small incisions under the skin and fat is vacuumed out. Tummy tucks and liposuction are often performed at separate times to reduce risk of complications.
Liposuction cost varies greatly from surgeon to surgeon and region to region, but you should expect to pay at least $3,000 for abdominal liposuction. Cost of a tummy tuck alone is usually between $6,000 and $10,000. A partial tummy tuck costs a little less. How much you will have to pay for any tummy tuck depends on the surgeon and clinic, and may also depend on how extensive and difficult the operation is expected to be.
Liposuction permanently removes fat cells from the treated region. This means you will never carry as much fat in that area again. The procedure causes bruising and soreness, but the area usually heals without incident and positive effects are usually noticeable after swelling subsides. Liposuction may leave a few small scars where incisions were made for the instruments.
Tummy tucks do not normally cause severe scarring. You will have a scar near your bikini line and an additional scar around your belly button. How visible these scars are depends much on your skin’s natural ability to heal. Initial regional pain followed by numbness is a common post-surgical effect of tummy tuck, but both should disappear as you heal.
Surgery of any kind comes with risks. If you have a tummy tuck or liposuction, you will usually be under some kind of sedation, and sometimes this means general anesthesia. Risks of general anesthesia include respiratory failure, allergic reaction to the anesthesia, and other potentially life-threatening complications.
Liposuction alone may be sufficient for you and is a safer, and cheaper, procedure than a tummy tuck. However, a tummy tuck may be encouraged if your abdominal muscles have been stretched through pregnancy. In these cases, liposuction alone may not create a flat stomach. Some surgery clinics offer financing. Consider this if you don’t want to pay the whole cost up front.