Would a full tummy tuck or mini be best for me? (Photo)

I'm trying to decide if a full tummy tuck or mini is needed. I have had 3 children and will not be having anymore. The elasticity of the skin is gone! I would like muscle repair and lipo if needed. My main concerns are the belly button scaring. I want to be able to wear my bikini and it look natural. What are your thoughts? Do I need a full tummy tuck or mini?

Doctor Answers 21

What type of tummy tuck?

Only an examination and discussion of your goals and concerns can determine your best option.  You may wish to speak with your plastic surgeon about an umbilical float procedure.  The is a full tummy tuck but instead of cutting the outside of the belly button which leaves a scar the belly button is released from the inside.  This allows your surgeon to tighten the abdominal muscles all the way up to your breast bone as this will lead to the flattest tummy possible.  The limitation of this procedure is that less skin can be removed as you do not want your belly button pulled too low.  Only an exam can determine if this will work for you.


Saint Louis Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 73 reviews

Improving abdominal contour

Thank you for your pictures. You definitely going to Wal laxity due to your pregnancies. It is hard to determine your skin laxity. There may be a couple of options.

  1. Liposuction
  2. Short incision abdominoplasty.
  3. Endoscopic abdominoplasty 


A many tummy tuck is almost never a suitable option in a postpartum woman.

From the photographs as well as general principles you would be best served by a full abdominoplasty. This will address abdominal wall issues from the sternum to the pubic area which presently exist.

Vincent N. Zubowicz, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 32 reviews

Tummy tuck Vs Mini tummy tuck

Hello, thank you for your question and the pics. You have a clear indication for a full tummy tuck, as you can see from your side pic, your abdomen has kind of a bloated curved line, this is because throughout pregnancy, your muscle wall has stretched to the point of loosing its tone. A full tummy tuck with muscle repair will get you a flat tummy again. On another angle, I believe that liposuction is also needed to enhance your waistline, and at the same time, the harvested fat can be injected to fill the hollow space in you hips and give you a fuller, rounder look to your lower body, which along with the slimmer waistline, will give you a nice hourglass shape. Hope to have helped you with your question. 

Jose Leon, MD
Dominican Republic Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 69 reviews

Not sure what you mean by full or mini-tummy tuck

I agree that to help your contour/shape, you need to have your muscles tightened.  That is a dissection from your bikini line to your breast bone in order to expose the underlying muscle that needs to be brought together or "plicated".  This can be done without moving or dissecting around your belly button so no scar.  Your skin will then be allowed to redrape and may be a little more lax then it is now because your abdominal muscles and wall will be smaller and tighter.  I would bet that it will be terrific though.  Your only scar should be low in your bikini line.  Doubtful you need liposuction but really hard to tell without examining you.  Once your muscles are tighter, the bulge will be gone and your stomach will be perfect!! 

Would a full tummy tuck or mini be best for me?

Hello! Thank you for your question and photos! I hope that these answers help! Tummy tuck is an excellent method for shaping the belly and create a flatter and sculpted abdomen after the procedure. Looking at your photos, I do believe that you would be an excellent candidate for this procedure in order to remove the excess skin/soft tissue of your lower abdomen and contour the areas of your belly. Also, abdominal wall tightening may optimize your result. Stretch marks to the level of your umbilicus will also be excised. Also, a continued healthy and active lifestyle prior to the procedure and afterwards is recommended in order to maintain the benefits that the procedure has given to you.  However, given the appearance of your belly now, consideration for liposuction along with an endoscopic repair of your abdomen to tighten the muscles would be a reasonable option.

Without an examination, it is difficult to assess your skin integrity and such.  But, if you do have a small amount of excess skin and soft tissue of your lower belly, a mini tummy tuck would be reasonable as an adjunct to the liposuction.   You should consult with a board-certified plastic surgeon well-versed in body contouring procedures at anytime to go over options to assist you in deciding which procedure(s) would be right for you. Best wishes!

Lewis Albert Andres, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Would a full tummy tuck or mini be best for me?

You look excellent and should avoid a scar on your tummy. Laser liposuction can remove fat and give you some skin tightening. I would do laser lipo first and evaluate at 1 year whether you need further tightening which I doubt.

Would a full tummy tuck or mini be best for me?

   You look very good, and I am not sure that the scar generated from a tuck of any kind would be justified. 

Kenneth Hughes, MD

Los Angeles, CA

Full or Many Tummy Tuck?

Consultation with a plastic surgeon board-certified in plastic surgery is your best bet to even getting close to an answer. There are different options available and different techniques of each kind of tummy tuck. Even at consultation, it is not always clear what is the best for the patient. There are often trade-offs for each of these procedures and your desires and expectations have to be explored.

Ira H. Rex lll, MD
Fall River Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 45 reviews

Tummy Tuck Options

Your type of abdominal problem is one of the hardest in which to make the ideal decision. The quality of the skin is suspect so liposuction alone will not fully address your concerns. A full tummy tuck is the definitive answer to your loose skin and belly button issues but with a trade-off of a long horizontal scar. A mini-tummy tuck is better than liposuction alone but not nearly as effective as a full tummy tuck. As you can see in your case, all abdominal options can be considered each with their own advantages and disadvantages. These are issues best reviewed with a plastic surgeon during a consultation who has the advantage of actually examining you.

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.