Dr Hertess will no longer be operating / consulting out of Cairns from April 2023. Any further enquiries are to be directed to Dr Hertess’s new clinic at 220 Ashmore Road, Benowa (Gold Coast) QLD 4217. Please visit www.drhertess.com.au or call 07 5601 0492 for more information.

Tummy tuck vs. lipo – which is right for you?

  • Tummy tuck

Shifting unwanted tummy fat can be tackled, for the most part, with a healthy diet and a balanced exercise routine.

But what happens when you’ve done all the hard work watching your calorie intake and hitting the gym every week, and you’re still not getting the result you want?

It can be disheartening. Fortunately, there are cosmetic procedures designed to target this exact problem area!

Losing abdominal fat is frustrating and difficult. Whether it’s from pregnancy, you’ve found your weight creeping up over the last couple of years, or you’ve been injured and haven’t been able to exercise as you’d have liked to, liposuction or a tummy tuck might be able to help.

But which option is the best option for you? And importantly, what is the difference between the two.

Let’s explore what each procedure is and what the results could be, along with your personal goals.

What is Lipo?

Lipo, short for Liposuction, is a minor outpatient procedure, where the doctor uses a suction device to go under the skin and remove unwanted fat from a specific area of your body.

At Cairns Plastic Surgery, we are passionate about supporting our patients’ improve their health and fitness, and as such do not offer quick-fix solutions like liposuction.

The procedures we offer, such as tummy tuck and post-weight loss surgery are not substitutes for weight loss; rather, they are designed to remove excess skin and tone and contour the body.

They are best suited to those who are already in good physical shape and health, but require a little more support to reach their physical goals.

What is a tummy tuck?

A tummy tuck is a procedure where excess skin and fat are removed from the abdomen.

The skin is then repositioned to create a smoother, toned look. A tummy tuck is also known as an abdominoplasty.

It is a contouring procedure, not a weight loss procedure, so it’s great if you’re looking to remove excess skin and you want the appearance of toned abs.

Who are the best candidates for a tummy tuck?

If you’re near your goal weight and have already been working hard to lose weight, a tummy tuck can help you contour that unwanted loose skin and residual fat around your tummy and midsection.

A tummy tuck is a great reward for hard work from diet and exercise – and while we can’t guarantee results, it’s a safe and effective procedure that may help you feel comfortable and confident in your own skin.

It’s important to note that if your BMI is too high, you’re clinically obsese or overweight, a tummy tuck may not be for you, as it is not a weight loss procedure.

It is a contouring and sculpting surgery. There are different body surgery procedures that could be an option too.

Which procedure is right for you – lipo or a tummy tuck?

When it comes to deciding which procedure may be right for you, to help you get the desired look or the feeling of the perfect toned stomach, it’s important to understand that the two procedures are designed to do two different things.

Liposuction is a weight loss procedure that can help reduce fat around the midsection, while an abdominoplasty or tummy tuck creates the toned and firm abdomen look.

Recovery time

Recovery times vary based on your unique response to surgery.

It’s also advisable that during your recovery time you don’t work and you avoid any strenuous activities. You’ll also need someone to help you around the house for the week after surgery.


Dr Hertess is an experienced plastic surgeon who aims to keep scarring to a minimum. That being said, it is normal for there to be a small scar from either procedure.

Tummy tuck Cairns

What are the results of a Tummy Tuck?

Tighten and tone your abs

A tummy tuck can help you if you’ve been pregnant because it can help tighten abdominal muscles which may have been damaged.

Your abs aren’t able to correct themselves, so this procedure can make a big difference to lots of women.
Some female patients experience diastasis recti following pregnancy and birth, which is a condition that spreads muscles apart. During an abdominoplasty, the underlying muscles are pulled back together which makes them tighter and creates the firmer, flatter midsection you may desire.

This is especially effective for a flatter tummy after birth.

Excessive skin removal

Maybe your weight has gone up and down over the years, or you’ve experienced significant weight loss and have excessive skin remaining.

Sometimes, due to pregnancy or other significant weight fluctuations, the skin is stretched so much it doesn’t return to its taut appearance – even with exercise and watching what you eat.

With a tummy tuck, Dr Hertess is able to remove mild to severe loose skin and create a more contoured look.

Fat removal

Both a tummy tuck and liposuction help remove fat around the abdomen.

A liposuction only removes fat, while a tummy tuck is designed to give a toned and contoured shape after recovery as well.


The main result we see in our patients is the lift in their self-esteem, especially when they feel comfortable to wear a swimsuit when they never have before or haven’t for many years.

For some of our clients a tummy tuck procedure is life-changing – helping them feel younger, more energetic, and confident.

A tummy tuck can help give you a shapely toned midsection while removing excessive skin and fat and strengthening the core muscles.

If you want to discuss the numerous benefits of tummy tuck surgery with our friendly and knowledgeable team, we invite you to book a free, no-strings conversation with a Cairns nurse.

Tell us a little about your goals by calling (07) 4031 5755 or filling in this form. We’ll get back to you shortly.