Can Tummy Tuck Change or Distort the Pelvic Area?

Is it possible for the pelvic anatomy to be distorted during Tummy Tuck, through the imbrication of the muscle and fascia?

Doctor Answers 11

Plication restores the anatomy and should not distort it

During the tummy tuck procedure the fascia of the abdominal muscle is usually tightened in one or two layers. There is a great tendency nowadays not to produce too much tightening as this could have more postoperative complications. The pelvic anatomy should not be affected by this plication as the degree of tissue mobilization is limited. Some discomfort could be left early but things will get better after sometime.

Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

Distortion of the pubic area with tummy tuck

As with all surgeries, there is a golden amount of tissue to remove that maximizes the results and minimizes potential complications. Too little yields unsatisfactory results. Too much yields aesthetic and biologic problems. If aggressively performed, the pubic structures can indeed be elevated in a strange fashion with a tummy tuck.

Plication sutures tighten the fascia (not the muscle, as is commonly thought). The plication sutures rarely cause deformation of the pubic area. In fact, they usually greatly improve this region.

However the entire balance and harmony of the abdomen and pubic area should be considered when performing a tummy tuck. A board certified plastic surgeon with great experience in tummy tuck surgery can address the fine points of balancing results with avoiding distortion. Every doctor has his or her own style, so patients should watch carefully the before and after pictures for an artistic style that suits them.

Brent Moelleken, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 177 reviews

Pelvic anatomy is safe during Tummy Tuck

By imbricating the muscle, you are in a way decreasing the volume intra-abdominal to an extent. But will the plication affect your pelvic anatomy in a way to prevent perhaps pregnancy or other issues? Unlikely.

During a tummy tuck, the work that is done is all extra pelvic or outside the pelvic and abdomen so there should not be any issues.

Hope that helps.

Farbod Esmailian, MD
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 77 reviews

Pregnancy and Pelvic changes

While abdomenoplasty does not seem to affect pelvic anatomy, pregnancy does. At the time of pregnancy, your body releases an enzyme that loosens the attachments between the two sides of the pelvic bones. This enzyme allows the pelvis to widen for birth. The only problem is that the bones may not return to their position after birth. Thus, pelvic anatomy is changed.

Robert M. Freund, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

Working above the pelvic area

Dear JS: I'm not sure I understand your concerns, but I will try to answer.

Tummy tuck, with its imbrication of the lax anterior abdominal wall tissues by midline abdominal imbrication, would not directly affect the internal pelvic organs, which are positioned lower within the pelvic space. The tightening of the lax skin and subcutaneous tissues may provide desirable support to (or re-suspension of) the mons pubis externally.

Patients could have pre-existing laxity of the pelvic floor support in addition to laxity of the anterior abdominal wall. This should be assessed by a patient's Gynecologist. It is not unusual to have both areas addressed during a combined set of operations by both surgeons.

Sutton Graham II, MD
Greenville Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

Tummy tuck should not.

A tummy tuck should not change the pelvic region. It might pull the pubic mound (mons) up but the labia and other vaginal structures should not be affected. A thigh lift may deform the labial region.

William B. Rosenblatt, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Abdominoplasty does not alter internal anatomy

Muscle and facial plication used during the tummy tuck procedure to tighten the abdominal wall does not affect the pelvic anatomy. Your body will feel and function the same way after. Imagine gently pushing in on the area with a girdle, or a binder. The effect is the same, though the muscle plication will hold with the girdle or binder off.

The outside you is the new and improved; while on the inside, it's the same old you.

Best of luck.

Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 42 reviews

Tummy tuck and pelvic distortion

It is unlikely that you would have any pelvic distortion after a tummy tuck. Yes, the muscles fascia in the midline is tightened, but the underlying bony architecture is not changed.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

The pelvic area can be distorted after a Tummy Tuck

To JS,

Hi! If a Tummy Tuck is not perforrmed properly, the pubic hair area can be increased and the genitalia can be excessively raised. This is caused not by muscle imbrication but by too much skin tightening.

George J. Beraka, MD (retired)
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

It is possible, but the technique and details matter

Hi there-

The short answer to your question is that yes, it is possible that your pubic area could be altered by tummy tuck surgery. The longer answer is that your individual anatomy and the precise technique used will affect the risk significantly, and even in patients with severe ptosis (sagging and distortion) of the area, the appropriate tummy tuck technique will actually aesthetically IMPROVE the area.

Poor attention to this point of anatomy and technique can result in a poor aesthetic outcome and even functional change. The best advice I can give you is the same advice I give everyone: find a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon you like and feel you can trust (there is no substitute for our years of training doing tummy tucks under supervision). Talk to them about your concerns and get all your questions answered. If you aren't comfortable, move on until you find someone you are comfortable with. I hope that helps.

Armando Soto, MD, FACS
Orlando Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 157 reviews

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.