Why Do I Have a Bulge Above my Belly Button After a Mini Tummy Tuck?

I had my sugery almost a year ago. The surgeon said he went above my belly button to tighten the muscles and also below the bb. He commented twice that I had alot of muscle in my abdomen. My abdomen used to be somewhat flat with just a tiny bit of loose skin right above my c section. That is why I opted for the mini tt. Now my abdomen protrudes out when you look at it from the side. I thought that a mini was tightening below the bb and removal of some extra skin. Why does it look worse now?

Doctor Answers 4

Mini Tummy Tuck

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There are a variety of definitions for a mini TT.  The bulge is difficult to speculate about without an exam.  She may have an umbilical hernia, a fat pad, or an unusual healed area or other issues.  An examination by a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon will be required to assess the problem, and options to solve the problem.

Danville Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 26 reviews

Mini or full tummy tuck?

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Thank you for the question.

The mini tummy tuck  generally serves to tighten the abdominal wall muscles below the belly button. It carries the risks  of creating a “bulge” above the belly button.  This bulge is related to  increased intra-abdominal pressure caused by the lower muscle plication.

Generally, the mini tummy talk is an  operation that  produces very limited results and is very rarely indicated. It involves a shorter incision but does not address the majority of the abdominal wall issues present for most patients who present consultation. For example, the area of skin excised is quite small. The abdominal wall musculature is addressed below the umbilicus leaving the upper number wall potentially lax. The appearance of the umbilicus is not necessarily addressed sufficiently.

For most patients who have had pregnancies and/or weight loss a full abdominoplasty is necessary to achieve the desired results. Of course, there are downsides (including a longer scar and probably a longer recovery time) but for most patients the benefits outweigh the downsides. It is not unusual to see patients who've had mini tummy tuck  surgery present for  revisionary surgery.
It is important to work with a well experienced board-certified plastic surgeon to obtain advice (based on good ethics and judgment) to  improve your chances of a successful outcome and minimize the need for further surgery.

I hope this helps.

Contour deformities after a tummy tuck

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After your surgery, you may have "popped" some sutures or experienced re-separation fo the muscles.  A revision tummy tuck will be needed to re-tighten the abdominal muscles.

Why is there a bulge after a mini tummy tuck?

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In a "mini" tummy tuck, there is often a tightening of the abdominal wall just on the lower half of the abdomen.  If you are very thin, you may see a protrusion (dogear) at teh top of that line of tightening stitches.  This may be addressed by either upper abdomen liposuction or conversion to a full tummy tuck.

Neal Goldberg, MD
Westchester Plastic Surgeon

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.