Mini Tummy tuck or Full Tummy Tuck? (photo)

If I lost 1 stone and reduced the fat on my upper tummy and toned up would I benefit from just a mini tummy tuck?

Doctor Answers 18

Mini versus full tummy tuck

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It looks like you would be a good candidate for a mini tummy tuck.  A full evaluation by a board certified plastic surgeon would give you a more precise answer.  Good luck.

Mini vs full

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You could benefit from a mini tummy tuck but you will still have some upper abdominal laxity.  This will limit your scar and give you benefits including a shorter recovery time.

John Dean, MD
Baton Rouge Plastic Surgeon
4.3 out of 5 stars 23 reviews

Mini Tummy Tuck has Limited Indications

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I went through a phase about 10 years ago where I tried to do more "mini" tummy tucks because that's what everybody was asking for.  Unfortunately, I think I pushed the idea a little too far and I learned some lessons from that experience.  Nowadays I have very narrow indications for a mini - meaning that I really only offer them for patients who need more of a cesarean scar revision.  The thing is that for the sake of a few more inches of scar on both sides, the results are DRAMATICALLY better with a full tummy tuck - for the majority of patients.

An abdomen like yours is really no exception in my mind.  I think you would be sorely disappointed (and potentially angry with your surgeon) if you have a mini tummy tuck.  With that said, do some research.  I'd be interested to see which way you decide to go with it.

Good Luck!

Thomas P. Sterry, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 23 reviews

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Tummy tuck + Lipo candidate, some advices:

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Thanks for the question. 

In this regard, I'm totally agree with you, therefore i recommend you a Full Tummy Tuck with muscle repair, to get a flat abdomen and waist and back Liposculpture, getting better curves especially in the waist, improving your body contour.

Finally, I suggested take the fat we get and transfer to the buttocks and hips, to mold them and get better volume, contour and butt projection, is that we know as "Brazilian Butt Lift" (BBL).

Kind regards 

Emmanuel Mallol Cotes, MD
Dominican Republic Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 367 reviews

Mini vs full tummy tuck

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Hello and thank you for posting a photo along with your question. Giving you an answer to your question can be difficult without evaluating you in person. However, based on the photograph I think in order to achieve the best result a full tummy tuck is the answer. A mini tummy tuck will get rid of the extra skin at the bottom but it may also pull your belly button down ( because there is quite of bit of skin that needs to be removed)and this may look a little off. Also, you probably have some loose skin above the belly button because you have some hooding of the belly button. The already present hooding of your belly button may get worse with a mini tummy tuck because it will pull on the upper abdominal skin and fat.

You appear to have abdominal wall laxity. Working out is very unlikely to help with this. After having kids and with age the abdominal wall weakens and needs to be retightened. The best way to do this is through a full tummy tuck. Please make sure you are evaluated by a board certified plastic surgeon. Hope this helps and good luck!

Ankur Mehta MD

Ankur Mehta, MD
Sugar Land Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 25 reviews

Mini tummy tuck versus full tummy tuck

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Thank you for the question. I think the answer depends on what your goals are. If you want a shorter scar and perhaps not as dramatic a result, a mini tummy tuck may be OK. If you want the best result possible and don't mind a longer scar to achieve it, I think you would likely need a full tummy tuck. However, it is impossible to make that distinction based on a single photograph.  I recommend consultation with a board-certified plastic surgeon 

John Paletta, MD
Savannah Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 21 reviews

Mini Tummy tuck or Full Tummy Tuck?

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Thank you for the question and picture.  Based on your picture, you will likely do best with full tummy tuck surgery.

Generally speaking, the “ideal” patient for tummy tuck surgery is one who has completed pregnancies, is psycho socially/emotionally/financially stable, has an excellent social support system surrounding him/her, is capable of arranging enough recovery time, does not smoke and who has reached a long-term stable weight.

 In my opinion, the mini tummy tuck 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 the vast majority of patients who have had pregnancies and/or weight loss a full abdominoplasty is necessary to achieve the desired results.   When the time is right, seek consultation with board-certified plastic surgeons who can demonstrate significant experience helping patients achieve the types of outcomes you would be pleased with.   You may find the attached link and video, dedicated to tummy tuck surgery concerns, helpful to you as you learn more. Best wishes. 

Mini tummy tuck or full tummy tuck?

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It depends on what your goals are.  If you are more interested in a quicker recovery, shorter scars, less surgical risks and less scars, then you can certainly just do a mini- tummy tuck.  Your abdomen, however, won't be as flat or toned and you will still have some loose skin around and above your belly button.  From what I can see of your pictures you seem to have enough skin and loose abdominal fascia to warrant the more extensive (just a little more extensive though) skin resection possible with the full tummy tuck as well as the more extensive fascia plication/ tightening that only a full tummy tuck can give you.  I would also recommend some liposuction of your anterior abdominal wall and waist hips at the same time for better contouring and definition (in experience and well- trained hands, this can be possible depending on your overall health and tissue qualities).  I also find that progressive tension sutures (quilting like suturing) can decrease the risks for seromas and drain needs (as well as improve definition of your abdominal wall contours), and use of a pain pump over the fascia plication and underneath the skin flap can really hasten your recovery.  Consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon with experience with these techniques is a good place to start.  Best wishes.

Mini Tummy tuck or Full Tummy Tuck? (photo)

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there are different types of tummy tucks which one is right for me and how are they different from the other? There is a mini tummy tuck, tummy tuck and a vertical abdominoplasty. The appropriate procedure depends the amount and location of the excess skin. That's what your plastic surgeon will have to determine after the actual physical exam.

   The recommended BMI is less than 30. This is the recommendation of the American society of plastic surgery. The reason simply, is increased chance of complications. These include but limited to, pulmonary embolus, deep venous thrombosis, delayed wound healing and increase infection rate.

Choose a board certified plastic surgeon who has done a ton of Tummy Tuck and has privileges to do this surgery at a local university hospital. This says his credentials have been checked out by fellow Drs. All surgeries carry risk, talk to your plastic surgeon and choose one wisely.

Many surgeons, including myself, offer online virtual consultations where you send us your photos and we can estimate the cost. I, like many surgeons, also offer free consultations so that you can be examined and given the most accurate quote possible. Please be mindful that the in person physical exam is the most important and could potentially alter your treatment plan.


Mini or full TT

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Thank you for your question. You can be candidate for  mini. Physical exam needed for evaluation of muscle tone. Please see a board certified PS for evaluation. 

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.