Should I Have a Full TT or a Mini? (photo)

I am 5'4 and weight 151 lbs. I gained over 100lbs with each pregnancy (I have two children 4 and 15 months). I have very stretched marked saggy skin above and below my belly button. My muscles are good with only about a 1" separation at the top and none at the bottom. I was wondering if based on my pictures would you recommend a full tummy tuck or a mini tummy tuck. I plan on being at my ideal weight that I can/will maintain of 135-140 by the time I go for a tummy tuck.

Doctor Answers 15

You should have a full Tummy Tuck. A mini is not the right procedure for you

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Based on your pictures I believe you are a perfect tummy tuck candidate.  You have loose excess skin that involves the entire abdomen, not only the portion below your belly button.  A full tummy tuck will give you the best possible outcome.

Best thing will be to see a board certified Plastic Surgeon who can examine you in person to assess the amount of excess skin and muscle laxity.  If you really gained that much weight during your pregnancy I would hazard a guess that you would benefit from a muscle tightening as well, although that would be determined during your examination.



Martin Jugenburg, MD, FRCSC

Toronto Cosmetic Surgery Institute

Toronto Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 518 reviews

Mini tummy tuck for mini problems ONLY

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Thank you for the question.


You need a full tummy tuck with mesh reinforcement. This technique will help you achieve weight loss and maintain the reduced weight.  A mini tummy tuck will not provide the results you desire.


Best of Luck,


Gary Horndeski, M.D.

Gary M. Horndeski, MD
Texas Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 230 reviews

Should I Have a Full TT or a Mini?

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FULL TT for sure! And it has been my experience as well that when I do a TT in a patient that has lost that much weight, their skin does relax a bit even after a really tight tummy tuck, so be prepared that you might have a bit of relaxation even after a Full TT...

John J. Corey, MD
Phoenix Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 48 reviews

Full or mini

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Its called a "mini" for a reason.  There is a very limited indication for a limited tummy tuck.  Most women who have had two or more pregnancies have enough excess skin to have a full tummy tuck which allows much greater control over the final result.  I would recommend that in your case.  There also appears to be excess skin that is present in the hip areas which may require an extended form of a tummy tuck for more complete correction. I typically combine a tummy tuck with liposuction, which I would recommend in your case.

Consult with several plastic surgeons in your area who are experienced with this procedure and choose the one you feel most comfortable with.

Thank you for your question.

Ralph R. Garramone, MD
Fort Myers Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 69 reviews

Tummy tuck

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Based on the photos you the best cosmetic result appears for you to have an extended tummy tuck or possibley a body lift. The key is the extra skin you have in the waist area which is not treated by a standard full abdominoplasty. You do have significant stretch marks and probably thin skin which your doctor will discuss with you how this affects surgery and healing. A consult with several of your local plastic surgeons should give you the information you need to make an informed decision on what  procedure is right for you. Good Luck!

Gregory T. Lynam, MD
Richmond Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 62 reviews

Mini or Full Tummy Tuck?

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Thank you for the question and pictures.

 You will benefit from full tummy tuck surgery; you should also educate yourself about “extended” tummy tuck surgery.

Generally speaking, the mini tummy talk 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 most patients who have had pregnancies and/or weight loss a full abdominoplasty is necessary to achieve the desired results. Of course, there are downsides (including a longer scar and probably a longer recovery time) but for most patients the benefits outweigh the downsides. It is not unusual to see patients who've had mini tummy tuck  surgery present for  revisionary surgery.
It is important  for patients seeking abdominal contouring surgery to work with a well experienced board-certified plastic surgeon to obtain advice (based on good ethics and judgment) to  improve  their chances of a successful outcome and minimize the need for further surgery.

I hope this helps.

Full tummy tuck v mini

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Very few women that want tummy tucks are good candidates for a mini, roughly one in twenty.  When it is the right choice it is a fantastic procedure.  On a person that needs a full tummy tuck it is a disapointment. Your pictures show excess skin in the area above the belly button and a large number of stretch marks below.  You are a very good candidate for a full abdominoplasty and should have an excellent result in the hands of a skilled PS.

Mary Lee Peters, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 117 reviews

Full tummy tuck vs mini, best option?

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Thanks for the photos. Without a doubt, you need a full tummy tuck or abdominoplasty to get the best results. Matter of fact you need an extended tummy tuck or a lower body lift as well. This is only determined for sure during a thorough consultation/examination. Even though you state that you have only 1" separation of the muscle, you have significant fascial laxity. See a board certified plastic surgeon to discuss the best surgical option for you. Good luck.

Full vs mini tummy tuck?

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Without an examination I am unable to provide a definite answer, but based on your photographs the best option for you would be a full tummy tuck (also known as abdominoplasty).   A "mini" tummy tuck most likely won't remove enough loose skin to provide an acceptable result and liposuction will only address some excess fat, not the excess/damaged skin and the muscle looseness (diastasis).  I also do not believe that any of the available non-surgical methods would be effective in you situation. 


Before proceeding with a tummy tuck you should consider whether or not you plan to have more children.  I would recommend that you set up a consultation with a Board-Certified plastic surgeon to discuss your goals and all of the specifics of an abdomioplasty.  Good luck!

Eric T. Emerson, MD, FACS
Charlotte Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Full tummy tuck

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A mini tuck is useful only when the problem areas are below the umbilicus. You photos demonstrate the need for skin and muscle correction throughout the abdomen. When you reachbyour ideal weight, you will be an excellent candidate for this procedure.

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.