Do I Need to Lose More Weight Before I Consider a Tummy Tuck?

I am 21 years old and two years ago I weighed 260 pounds and I am 5'7" and I now currently weigh 180 pounds. The skin on my stomach is very loose and I have old stretch marks that I want removed. Am I a good candidate for this now or do I need to lose more weight?

Doctor Answers 13

The appropriate timing for a tummy tuck as related to weight.

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

You have lost a substantial amount of weight resulting in laxity of your abdominal skin and probably underlying muscles as well. Clearly, as confirmed by your photos, a tightening procedure would be beneficial for you, whether this involves just your abdomen or even a circumferential one (belt lipectomy or lower body lift).

Are you planning to lose more weight/do you want to be at a lower weight? If so, you would be best served by losing most of this additional weight first prior to undergoing surgery as the results would be much better, more refined and longer lasting. Either way, your outcome should be a vast improvement over your pre-weight loss appearance.

Losing weight and tummy tuck

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

In general, I tell my patients if you are within 10-15% of the weight you desire, a tummy tuck is reasonable.  However, if your goal is to be less than 160 lbs. (greater than 10--15% of where you are now),  you should wait until you lose the weight.  Your result may be more loose if you lose the extra weight from 180 lbs. to less than 160 lbs. after the surgery.  You should also understand that only the stretch marks from your navel to you pubic hair line will be removed.  Anything above the navel will still be present.

Ricardo Izquierdo, MD
Oak Brook Plastic Surgeon

Best to lose weight before TT

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

I also congratulate you on losing the weight.  At your current weight at 5'7" you have a BMI of 28.2, which puts you in the overwieght category, but not too bad.  The first question is, do you WANT to lose more weight??  If you do, it is better to do so before the tummy tuck.  Patients have to be realistic.  If you get down to say 160 pounds, yes you will look that much better, but is this a realistic goal for you?  If  you lose the weight, can you keep it off?

You will want to get an opinion from a plastic surgeon who has actually seen you, of course. Good luck.

Be at a stable weight before having a tummy tuck

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Once you have achieved your goal weight ( or close to it) then you can consider having a tummy tuck. In your particular case however, if you have already lost 80 pounds, you may need a body lift to remove skin from your entire abdomen, flanks, outer thighs and buttocks. A board certified plastic surgeon can evaluate you and determine which body contouring procedure is best for you.

Best wishes,


Tummy Tuck After Weight Loss

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Congratulations on your weight loss!  Although you (like everyone) will have a better result if you are at or near your ideal weight at the time of your tummy tuck, it looks as if you could have a good result at this time if you also have some aggressive liposuction of your flanks concurrently.  In your anterior photo, your abdomen looks flat except for the redundent skin and fat in your lower abdomen.  On the lateral photo, however, the excess fat in your flanks is more apparent.

John Whitt, MD (retired)
Louisville Plastic Surgeon

Do I Need to Lose More Weight Before I Consider a Tummy Tuck?

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Dear dwambach,

Congratulations on your weight loss!

The best time to perform a tummy tuck or other body contouring procedure is when your weight is stable and you are close to your goal weight. You are a suitable candidate for a tummy tuck at your current weight.

Warmest wishes,

Larry Fan, MD

Larry Fan, MD
San Francisco Plastic Surgeon

Awesome weight loss

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

with great weight loss comes awesome surgical results. you should only lose more weight if your target weight dictates it. otherwise, you are good to go. good luck

Rafael C. Cabrera, MD
Boca Raton Plastic Surgeon

Does a 5'7'' 180 pound patient qualify for a tummy tuck?

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

First of all congratulations on losing 80 pounds; that is a real feat! On examining your photos it appears that you can now be a candidate for a tummy tuck unless you want to lose more weight. If you do, then you should first lose the additional weight and then undergo the tummy tuck. Otherwise if you have the tt now and you then lose more weight you may have recurrent excess skin with sagging.

Tummy Tuck after Weight Loss

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}
Thank you for your question and congratulations on your weight loss!   I think you are a wonderful candidate for a tummy tuck.  I think as long as your weight is stable, it is fine to proceed.  If you are still losing, wait until the weight loss stabilizes.  I wish you a safe, happy, and healthy result.

Dr. Gill

Paul S. Gill, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon

Tummy Tuck Candidate

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}
Congratulations on the weight loss. Without a photo, it would be difficult to guide you. Consult in person with 3 board certified plastic surgeons to understand your options.

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.