I Had a Mini Tummy Tuck and Needed No Liposuction. After the Tuck It is Not As Flat As Before Why?

The tuck was done the end of June 2012. The doctor had to trim the extra flaps of skin in October. Now I don't know what to do? The front view is OK but the side view I have a pouch. The protrusion is 2 inches on either side of the belly button (which she said was a floater and she had to attach during the original surgery). The second surgery she had to remove the flaps that seemed to hang but she did not do the part I described above. Am I being a pain should I not expect a flat stomach.

Doctor Answers 4

Tummy bulging after a mini tummy tuck

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It is impossible to answer this without seeing a pre-operative photo. Oftentimes, there is improvement but not perfection. This is part of the pre-operative conversation with your surgeon. He or she should have discussed what the realistic outcome of your surgery would be. There may have been some miscommunication in which either your surgeon over promised, or perhaps you over expected. Discuss your concerns with your surgeon.

Not As Flat As Before

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Without comparable pre op photos to look at it is hard to respond to your questions. Please consider adding some to the posting. 

The common causes include

  • fluid collection
  • incomplete thinning of the abdominal skin
  • intra-abdominal fullness
  • breakdown of muscle repair

The cause can usually be determined but requires a physical exam. It may be unreasonable to expect a flat abdomen for some patients, but it should be as flat as before surgery.

Thanks, all the best. 

Jourdan Gottlieb, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon

Mini tummy tuck results and excess fat

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The answer to your question depends largely on what is causing the 'pouch' of tissue, whether it be seroma, fat, or loose muscle.  I would begin with an examination to determine the causes and see whether time or a revision will help your condition. 

Raffy Karamanoukian, MD, FACS
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 95 reviews

Not Flat after Tummy Tuck Surgery?

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Thank you for the question and picture. No, I do not think that you are being a “pain”.  Unfortunately, precise advice would necessitate direct examination.   However, some general thoughts may be helpful to you.

If the lower abdominal wall “pouch” is related to abdominal wall muscle laxity, then additional surgery to tighten up the muscle laxity will likely achieve your goals.

 On the other hand, if the pouch is related to redundant skin/adipose tissue, then liposuction and/or additional skin excision may be necessary.

 Address your concerns with your plastic surgeon;  seek second opinions in person if necessary.

 Best wishes.

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.