I have an umbilical hernia after my 3rd child and don't know if I should fix it or get a Tummy tuck? (photos)

I was told today I have a umbilical hernia. I'm three months post partum with my third child. I've had three children and in four years. My question is should I get the umbilical hernia fixed or get a tummy tuck ? The skin does not feel extremely loose it's more hard I'm not sure if that is from the hernia or if it's fat. I've had a fairly flat stomach my whole life so this is new to me.

Doctor Answers 17


Without an in person examination, it is impossible to say what will be the best option for you.  From your picture, it does appear that you have excess skin in the lower abdomen that could be addressed with an abdominoplasty.  As far as the hernia is concerned, this is often caused by a separation between your rectus muscles called a diastasis.  This happens with repeated pregnancies, not allowing the muscles to come back fully to their natural anatomic position.  In these cases, you need repair the diastasis fully address the hernia concerns.  The bets thing to do is to go for a consultation with board certified plastic surgeons and see what will work best for you.  I hope this helps.

Barrington Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 75 reviews

Umbilical hernia and tummy tuck

From the pictures I looks as though a tummy tuck would be a great operation for you.  If you are planning this have the umbilical hernia done at the same time as this reduces risk that a general surgeon would divide the umbilical stalk during a hernia repair and cause healing problems with the tummy tuck.  Most BS PS will be able to address both the skin and small hernia in one operation.  Good luck!

Mahlon Kerr, MD, FACS
Austin Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 217 reviews

I have an umbilical hernia after my 3rd child and don't know if I should fix it or get a Tummy tuck?

It depends what you want.  An umbilical hernia repair will simply fix the umbilical hernia.  A tummy tuck will improve the extra skin, fat and if necessary the loose muscle. You are still early from your childbirth and some of the skin, fat may improve over the next 3 months.  At that time you can make a decision.  It is simple to fix an umbilical hernia at the time of a tummy tuck.

Mark E. Crispin, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 23 reviews

I have an umbilical hernia after my 3rd child.

Umbilical hernias are very common during pregnancy, and often can close again after delivery. If you are only three months post delivery you might give it more time to see if it resolves. A persistent umbilical hernia is easily fixed both directly and for some surgeons laparoscopically. Umbilical hernias are often repaired during a full or partial tummy tuck without difficulty. Give yourself time to recover your abdomen and then see which way seems the best for you.

Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 43 reviews

Umbilical hernia and or tummy tuck

This is a great question,  often times we find hernias when performing a tummy tuck.  If you are ready to have a tummy tuck speak to your surgeon but I would recommend you have both surgeries done at the same time as he will be in the area already

N. Bill Aydin, MD
Paramus Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 60 reviews

If you do not plan any more pregnancies - combine abdominoplasty with hernia reapir

It looks from this photo that you have quite a lot of laxity in your abdominal area and would be a good candidate for an abdominoplasty. This can be combined with umbilical hernia repair (especially is your plastic surgeon is fully trained in general surgery) . Full abdominoplasty can be tricky with hernia repair because of the blood supply but not impossible. Mini abdominoplasty could be a better option

Gregory Turowski, MD, PhD, FACS
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 61 reviews

I have an umbilical hernia after my 3rd child and don't know if I should fix it or get a Tummy tuck?

If you are happy with the way your abdomen looks, then just consider fixing the hernia. If you would like to make your abdomen look better, then the hernia can be fixed at the same time by a plastic surgeon. See link below for examples.

Karol A. Gutowski, MD, FACS
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 70 reviews

Umbilical Hernia and Tummy Tuck

We commonly find and repair umbilical hernias and other abdominal hernias during Tummy Tuck surgery. If you qualify and are ready for a Tummy Tuck the hernia will be taken care of by your surgeon. 
Dr. Peter A. Aldea

Peter A. Aldea, MD
Memphis Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 109 reviews

Umbo hernia with tummy tuck

It is certainly possible to fix the umbilical hernia at the same time as the tummy tuck.  But it seems like your belly, and you, has been through a lot recently, so you may want to give it some time to see how the skin recoils after losing weight.  If you're at your goal weight, and it's stable, then seeking consultation will help determine what's best.  If you are unsure about the tummy tuck part, you can also just go get your hernia fixed on its own and wait on the belly.

Cain R. Linville, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 34 reviews

Abdominoplasty vs Hernia repair

Congratulations on the recent addition to your family.  Depending on the size of your umbilical hernia and the symptoms it is associated with, you may be able to wait a combine the two surgeries.   Hernias can get larger and not problematic as time goes on so you don't want to wait forever.   That being said you will have very similar postoperative restrictions from both surgeries.  This includes limited weight lifting (i.e. Car seats and strollers).   As you continue to shed your baby weight you may decide that an abdominoplasty is for you.  If that's the case, visit a board certified plastic surgeon that can examine you and determine what procedures are right for you.  After several pregnancies you may require muscle repair or plication in addition to your hernia repair to tighten loose muscles that can create an unsightly bulge in the lower abdomen.   All of that can be evaluated during your consultation.

Jacob Bloom, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 11 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.