arrow-right arrow-left calendar chat phone bag profile play quote-marks tag fax trash download resource shopping-cart news play-circle shopping-bag email list text specials Lifted Logic Web Design in Kansas City clock location phone play chevron-down chevron-left chevron-right chevron-up facebook checkbox checkbox-checked radio radio-selected instagram google plus pinterest twitter youtube send ll-footer close play pause


The Difference Between Liposuction Vs Tummy Tuck | Indianapolis Surgical Experts

So, you’re interested in achieving a more toned, sculpted physique, but workouts and diet aren’t cutting it? There are a variety of reasons why stubborn pockets of fat seem to stick around no matter what you do, including pregnancy, hormonal changes, aging, and genetics.


Turkle & Associates is the premier destination for plastic surgery near Indianapolis. We offer tons of cosmetic procedures that help you feel more confident in your skin! Our renowned plastic surgeon Dr. Jan K. Turkle and our compassionate, highly-skilled team strive to help you achieve the best version of yourself yet. 


Two of our procedures, liposuction and tummy tuck, are fairly similar in their aesthetic goals; a slimmer, more contoured physique. But you may be wondering: “Liposuction vs tummy tuck…how do I decide?” 


Want to know a secret? You may not have to. Keep reading to learn about these procedures and if one (or both) is right for you.

Liposuction | The rundown

Liposuction is a common cosmetic surgery that removes excess, unwanted body fat. There are many treatment area possibilities, including:


  • Thighs
  • Hips
  • Butt
  • Abdomen
  • Waist
  • Upper arms
  • Back
  • Knee area
  • Calves
  • Ankles
  • Submental area (under the chin)

Ideal liposuction candidates

Non-smoking adults within 30% of their ideal weight are good candidates for liposuction. Because the procedure eliminates pockets of fat, good skin elasticity is necessary to reduce the risk of sagging skin post-treatment. If you’re concerned about your candidacy, schedule a consultation with us to discuss patient requirements!

Procedure details 


Prior to any procedure at Turkle & Associates, you can expect an in-depth consultation during which you and your doctor will discuss your lifestyle, risk factors, surgery details, aesthetic goals, and desired results. Dr. Turkle will take these into consideration as we create a customized treatment and recovery plan for your unique needs. 


During the consultation, Dr. Turkle will go over the details of the surgery with you. This is a good time to ask as many questions as you need in order to feel comfortable with the procedure. 


Upon arrival at the surgery center, you will have the chance to meet the surgery center staff, anesthesiologist and review the surgery with your doctor. 


Prior to the surgery, your medical team may make marks on the areas of treatment, indicating the incision sites and fat reduction areas. 


For a surgical treatment like liposuction, we will put you under general anesthesia for the entirety of the procedure. The length of the procedure at Turkle & Associates varies depending on the number of areas we treat.


During the surgery, your surgeon makes small incisions near the desired areas of treatment. Then, your surgeon inserts a tube called a cannula into the incision to reach the unwanted fat. The team uses gentle suction and strategic placement to remove the excess fat from the desired areas and contour the body for the desired results.

Tummy tuck | The rundown

Sometimes, diet and exercise alone are not enough to get rid of stubborn pockets of fat on the abdomen. For some, this can be exceptionally frustrating. A tummy tuck, also known as an abdominoplasty, is a popular cosmetic procedure that provides a solution. It removes the unwanted fat and excess skin on the abdomen, repairs separated muscles, and leaves you with a tighter, toned abdomen.


Tummy tucks also repair Diastasis Recti, a condition in which the abdominal walls separate during pregnancy, causing a bulge in the lower belly that is difficult to treat with diet and exercise alone. Additionally, the surgeon may remove skin that has stretch marks or scars, including cesarean section scars, during your tummy tuck!

Procedure details


Just like with liposuction, we begin your tummy tuck with an in-depth consultation. You and your surgeon will discuss your desired aesthetic results, lifestyle, potential risks and benefits, and more. This consultation allows us to customize a treatment and recovery plan that is unique to your needs! It also gives you an opportunity to ask questions about the surgical procedure and process. 


Upon arrival at the surgery center, you will have the chance to meet the surgery center staff and anesthesiologist and review the surgery with your doctor. 


For this surgical procedure, our skilled anesthesiologist will put you under general anesthesia for the duration of the surgery. Typically, a tummy tuck takes 2 to 3 hours to complete, depending on the desired results and surgical techniques. 


During the procedure, your doctor will make an incision on the lower portion of the abdomen. Dr. Turkle has incredible success with disguising scar tissue in the natural creases of the body. 


The surgeon also makes an incision around the belly button to remove the skin. Next, she removes the excess fat tissue, and then pulls and tightens the skin over the newly contoured abdomen. She cuts away the remaining excess skin and closes the incision. Finally, she creates a new hole for the belly button. 

Ideal candidates

Ideal candidates for a tummy tuck procedure in Carmel are men and women in good health with excess skin due to weight loss or pregnancy. An eligible candidate may also have separated abdominal muslces due to Diastasis Recti that are resistant to diet and exercise.  


For a tummy tuck, it is best if you are not planning to have future pregnancies to ensure the longevity of your results. 


Take a look at this informative video by Dr. Turkle about the differences between liposuction and abdominoplasty!


Embed video here:

Liposuction vs tummy tuck | Recovery

One of the big differences between liposuction and a tummy tuck is the recovery period. Let’s dive into what that looks like for each.

Liposuction recovery

Day 1

Immediately following the procedure, we will monitor you and utilize a compression garment on the treated areas to prevent swelling. We’ll release you into the care of a friend or family member. You should arrange for a support system to help get you home and take care of housework and childcare, if needed.

Day 2 to 5

You may experience slight soreness during this period. We will provide proper pain medication to minimize any discomfort. Getting up and walking around is highly recommended to increase blood flow and reduce other complications. 


You and your doctor will discuss your return to work, but typically you will require at least 3 days of rest and recovery before returning. 

Weeks 1 through 6

Typically, around week 2 you can resume most normal activities. Exercise after liposuction is encouraged in small doses two weeks post-op, and more strenuous activities are encouraged as you feel able. Submerging in water is restricted for 3 weeks. 

Tummy tuck recovery

Day 1

After your surgery, we will monitor you in one of our comfortable recovery rooms. You will likely be able to return home the same day as your surgery, so make sure to arrange for a friend or family member to drive you home.


Dr. Turkle will send you home with the appropriate pain medication and an abdominal support garment. This garment helps to control swelling. 

Day 2 to 10 

Most patients require 10 to 14 days of rest post-procedure before returning to work or beginning to drive. During this time you will check in with your medical team so they can monitor your tummy tuck recovery progress. Although we recommend walking around the house to increase blood circulation, you will be restricted in the activities you perform. 


You may be tired and tender near the incision sights. Some bruising and swelling is common. 

Week 2 to 6

By the end of week one, many patients are ready to return to work, but some require closer to two weeks of downtime. Overall, you should be feeling much better during this period, with pain, swelling, and bruising going down. You are free to resume many normal activities, but full submersion in water and strenuous exercise is still prohibited. 


Related: Not ready for surgery? Learn about non-surgical body contouring in Carmel

Liposuction vs tummy tuck | Results

Liposuction and a tummy tuck are sometimes confused as the same procedure, but a main way to differentiate between the two is in the results. 

Liposuction results

After several weeks, swelling and bruising goes down, revealing your new slimmer appearance! The results of liposuction depend on the areas of treatment, but overall you can expect to see a slimmer, more defined physique.


Insert before and after photos here

Tummy tuck results

Dr. Turkle has had incredible success with her tummy tucks in the past. These procedures actually tighten the muscles of the abdomen, giving you a toned, contoured appearance on the belly. You will no longer see a “pouch” protruding from the stomach. Patients report that clothing fits better and their confidence in their body increases!


Insert before and after photos here

Combining liposuction and tummy tuck 

Ultimately, we like to think of these two procedures less as liposuction vs tummy tuck and more as liposuction and tummy tuck. We can pair the two treatments during one procedure for absolutely stunning results! 


Oftentimes, those with major skin laxity (sagging skin) on the abdomen will require a tummy tuck. However, adding liposuction for the arms, back, thighs, or more during your tummy tuck procedure can result in a rejuvenated appearance for the entire body.


Insert before and after photos here

Liposuction vs tummy tuck | The overview

If you’re still unsure of choosing between liposuction vs a tummy tuck, below is a benefits summary of each procedure.

You should get liposuction if:

  • You would appreciate less downtime 
  • You want to remove pockets of fat on varying parts of the body 
  • Your skin is elastic and would “snap back” into place

You should get a tummy tuck if:

  • You have excess fat on the abdomen that doesn’t go away with diet and exercise 
  • You would like to strategically contour the abdomen
  • You are not planning on having future pregnancies
  • You have skin laxity which would not “snap back” after fat removal

Use our virtual consultation tool

Still not sure which of these procedures is right for you? Try our virtual consultation tool. Simply answer a few questions about your history and desired results, and receive expert treatment recommendations straight to your inbox.


If you’d like even more expert info, schedule a consultation with us today!


Virtual Consultation Tool


Come see us in Carmel!

We are proud to serve the Indianapolis region with compassionate and expert surgical and nonsurgical cosmetic enhancement services. Whether you’re right around the corner, or you’re visiting us from Zionsville, Avon, Fishers, Westfield, or any of our other neighbors, we are happy and excited to help you achieve your most beautiful self yet! Come in and see us at 11455 N. Meridian in Carmel today!

Related Posts

Decorative Slashes Decorative Dots