Are tummy and mini-tummy tuck procedures improving due to demand?

With a whopping 1/3 of American women undergoing C-sections, I would think there's growing demand for tummy tucks and especially mini TTs. A rapidly growing area of the field? How quickly are TT improving? Still look like costly, painful, long, drawn-out major surgeries. Will there be a quicker and easier fix for women who are in ideal shape other than their disfigurement due to a C-section? Tell me where were are headed as far as new advances, what we can expect.

Doctor Answers 9

Evolution of abdominal surgery

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thanks for your thought full question:

the main improvements are based on pain control, recovery time, less complication rates related fluid collection. The overall surgical technique remains very similar. 


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Tummy tuck outcomes are safe and they are improving, but it is not due to more c-sections. Tummy tuck surgery in my practice is done with much better pain control than I had just a few years ago thanks to new non-narcotic medications which reduce pain sensation up to 50%. The suture technology is also better and this combined with advanced scar therapy, like Embrace Scar Prevention, leads to better outcomes. Additionally, organized plastic surgery through the ASPS and the ASAPS have recommendations for surgeons and patients about safety in the operating room to reduce complications and improve outcomes for tummy tuck surgery. For other procedures such as facial and breast surgery, recommendations from these prestigious organizations also exist and have improved outcomes as well. 

Warmest regards, Dr. ALDO

Aldo Guerra, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 216 reviews

C-sections not related to tummy tucks

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Tummy tucks are done for lax skin with stretch marks, localized fat that does not change with diet & exercise, and/or muscle separation (diastasis), which is not correctable without surgery. All of these changes occur as a result of pregnancy, and are not related to C-sections. It is true that tummy tuck techniques are improving. Newer techniques include progressive tension sutures and Exparel for significant reduction in surgical pain. If the C-section scar is the only problem, then a simple scar revision would be the procedure of choice.

Richard Baxter, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 59 reviews

Are tummy tucks improving?

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Tummy tucks needs significant recovery because it involves the torso and all movements are relying on that area. C-section scars can definitely cause deformity and combined with the loose skin from pregnancy creates the typical scenario for patients who seek a tummy tuck. With limiting use of drains recently or for less amount of time and use of some long term local anaesthetics the postop experience has improved. It is still a substantial procedure and it is best to discuss all your concerns and expectations with a board certified plastic surgeon.

Bahram Ghaderi, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon

Are tummy and mini-tummy tuck procedures improving due to demand?

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  Thank you for the insightful question. Yes, tummy tuck operations are still extensive operations associated with major physical, and often emotional, recovery periods.  However, I think that aesthetic outcomes are improving and complication rates are decreasing as certain technical aspects of the procedure improve.

 Ultimately, nothing will replace careful selection of plastic surgeon,  careful communication of goals, and careful preparation for a  significant recovery period.

 Best wishes.

Are tummy tucks improving?

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Excellent question! I agree that c-sections have contributed to the need for more tummy tucks than when I began to practice over 30 years ago.  You are also correct that surgery is best in women who are thin but otherwise have stretching of the abdominal skin and musculature.  In terms of technique, we have embraced patient centric surgery with variations as appropriate. Finally, there is no substitute for surgical experience.  I learn from every surgery I perform.

Are tummy and mini-tummy tuck procedures improving due to demand?

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Thanks for your question. Tummy tucks are requested by women to tighten the loose and damaged skin that results from pregnancy, having a C-Section has nothing to do with the need for a TT. The vast majority of TT patients have never had a C-Section. If your abdominal skin is OK and you just don't like your C-Section scar , a simple scar revision under local and back to life the in a couple of days is all that is required. 

Ronald V. DeMars, MD
Portland Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Improved Tummy Tuck

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Thanks for your question.  I think Tummy Tucks have improved in Several ways.  

1.  Many Surgeons have stopped using drains - Full and Mini-Tummy tucks can be done without a drain using new quilting suture techniques.  Patients have a much better experience.  Easier on their care-givers too.

2.  There are great new techniques for pain control - I use Exparel, a long lasting numbing medicine to decrease the need for strong narcotic pain pills and all their side effects.

3.  Surgeons have learned how to better contour the rest of the body with liposuction to get a better overall shape.  

All of these improvements have been a great way to shorten recovery, increase safety, and get a better result.  

Happy Holidays and best of luck on your research.

Dr. Schwartz

Michael R. Schwartz, MD
Thousand Oaks Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 35 reviews

Tummy tuck

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Hello and thank you for your question.  The best advice you can receive is from an in-person consultation.  If you are an appropriate candidate, a tummy tuck can be done through a low and short incision, all completely below the bikini line.  The belly button can be designed to look natural and have no scars on the exterior.   Your muscles can also be plicated resulting in a flat abdomen.  Make sure you specifically look at before and after pictures of real patients who have had this surgery performed by your surgeon and evaluate their results.  The most important aspect is to find a surgeon you are comfortable with. I recommend that you seek consultation with a qualified board-certified plastic surgeon who can evaluate you in person.

Best wishes and good luck.

Richard G. Reish, M.D.
Harvard-trained plastic surgeon


Richard G. Reish, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 174 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.