How to Find out if I Need a Mini or a Full Tummy Tuck?

Is there any chance a mother of 3 can have a mini tummy tuck? What is the criteria? I do weight training since I was a teenager and although I think my muscles are a little stretched I can only place a finger between them . I am 5.4 and my weight is 115 pounds.

Doctor Answers 10

Mini or full tummy tuck?

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Thank you for the question and pictures.

I think that you should avoid surgery and be congratulated on the appearance of your abdomen. I think either type of tummy tuck surgery would be “overkill” in your case.

I hope this helps.

Mini tummy tuck or full tummy tuck?

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An exam is necessary to say for sure.  In general, a mini tummy tuck is best suited for someone with skin redundancy and muscle separation limited below the belly button.

Neal Goldberg, MD
Westchester Plastic Surgeon

When mini tummy tuck makes sense

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Some individuals suffer little skin laxity or stretch marks after pregnancy. If abdominal tone is the concern from a diastasis, and modest laxity over the lower abdomen, perhaps a fold over a C-section scar, the mini tummy tuck can make the most sense.

Best of luck,


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

Mini vs, full tummy tuck - how to decide

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Both versions of a tummy tuck do what you can't accomplish with diet and exercise: Remove lolaized fat if any, repair muscle separation (called a diastasis) from pregnancy, and tighten the skin. With a full TT, a horizontally oreiented football-shaped area of skin from the belly button down the the pubic area is removed. The skin above the belly button is undermined so that it can be stretched to cover the areas where skin was removed. An opening is made for the belly button to come through at its original location. With a mini, a smaller area of skin is removed and the area above the belly button is not affected. The mini therefore works only when the skin laxity is limited to the lower part of the abdomen and the upper part is fine. 

Richard Baxter, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 56 reviews

Mini-tummy tuck or full tummy tuck

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Without an exam it is dificult to ell you whether or not you wold be a good candidate for a mini or a full.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Would a mini tummy tuck be a sensible choice?

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From the photos, it appears that you have little if no lax skin but you do have a slight increase of lower abdominal protrusion. This may benefit from a muscle repair (bringing the muscles closer together) resulting in a flatter lower abdomen. Any minor excess of skin can be removed at that time.

My recommendation would to be evaluated by a reputable board certified plastic surgeon who can then provide you also with the pros and cons of a mini tummy tuck. You would then be able to determine if the surgery would make sense for you.

Steven Turkeltaub, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 31 reviews

Tummy Tuck?

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The key to any surgery is patient satisfaction.  If the deformity is smaller than what can reasonably be accomplished by an operation, then it  would be prudent to recommend against such a procedure. Your photo's demonstrate a slight bulging that might be improved with rectus fascia plication. But, you also might not appreciate a difference. Hope this is helpful and the best of luck to you.

Marc Schneider, MD
Fort Myers Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

Mini-tummy tuck

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Frankly, I don't see a need for any "tucking" in the photos posted. With the exception of a slight bit of hooding of the navel, your abdomen looks like a very nice post-op photo. I wouldn't recommend putting any scars on that tummy.

James W. Ward, MD (retired)
Arlington Plastic Surgeon

Hybrid tummy tuck vs mini tummy tuck vs full tummy tuck

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You are a classic candidate for a Hybrid abdominoplasty; minimal skin looseness with a separation due to childbirth of the rectus muscles.

Usually, a small amount of liposuction is combined with this procedure for contouring.

A full tummy tuck will leave you with a long and high incision.

A mini tummy tuck will not tighten your fascia above the belly button.

Brent Moelleken, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 191 reviews

Mini Tummy Tuck

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You should be examined by a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon so you can have all of your options available, then decide on what compromises you are willing to have for a mini TT, or if you want the compromises of the full TT.

Vivek Bansal, MD
Danville Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 26 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.