Mini Tummy Tuck Less Painful Than a Full Tummy Tuck?

Is a mini tummy tuck less painful than a full, regular tummy tuck?

Doctor Answers 20

Mini-tummy tuck pain

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

A mini-tummy tuck conceivably is less painful than a full tummy tuck because there is not the extensive undermining and certainly not the same abdominal muscle plication.

New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Mini tummy tuck and full tummy tuck pain quite similar

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Both procedures are designed to remove excess skin and fatty tissue from the abdomen and to tighten muscles of the abdominal wall. The full abdominoplasty targets the upper, middle and lower part of the abdomen.

Mini tummy tuck is ideal for people who have excessive fat between belly button and pubic bone. Bulging in this area is due to accumulation of excess of fatty tissue, as well as flaccidity of the lower stomach muscles. The recovery time and the level of discomfort after the surgery would be similar in both cases; it takes about a week to go back to daily activities.

Usually, both surgeries are combined with liposuction, which allows better body contouring and better final results. During the consultation ask your plastic surgeon what is the best option for your body type. Both surgeries are best being performed under the general anesthesia or deep sedation.

Make sure your surgeon explains what his "mini" procedure is

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

In general, most of us define a mini-tummy tuck as a procedure which addresses the abdomen from the belly button down, usually with some tightening of the muscles and removal of excess skin. Some surgeons, however, will only remove skin in this procedure, leaving any bulge that you may have due to loose muscle behind and therefore not really changing the contour of your abdomen.

It's important for your surgeon to explain exactly what his plans are for your procedure and why he would recommend one procedure over another. If your belly needs to be flattened above your belly button, than a standard tummy tuck is the way to go. The discomfort is perhaps a little worse early on, but in the long run it would give you a better chance at the result you're looking for.

Good luck!

Dr. Salemy

Shahram Salemy, MD, FACS
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 155 reviews

Mini Tummy Tuck and Recovery

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}
A mini tummy tuck or mini abdominoplasty is less surgery but the recovery can be just the same as a full tummy tuck, especially if the muscle is repaired at the same time. However, if you have a rapid recovery, NO drain tummy tuck, you should have the same recovery no matter which surgery you have.

I hope that helps.

Best regards.

Brian Windle, MD
Kirkland Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 64 reviews

Mini Tummy Tuck

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

A mini tummy-tuck is generally less uncomfortable that a full tummy tuck for all of the reason listed. Make certain that your surgeon is a board certified plastic surgeon.  Best wishes!

Christine Sullivan, MD
Columbus Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 35 reviews

Minimizing pain after a tummy tuck

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Typically there is only minor discomfort with a mini tummy tuck, as there is very little work done on the abdominal wall.  In our practice we strive to limit amount of pain even in a full tummy tuck.  To achieve this one needs impeccable surgical technique, long acting numbing medicine infiltration and pain pumps.  Make sure your surgeon discusses with you the optimum approach, as each tummy tuck needs to be individualized for optimum outcome.

Boris M. Ackerman, MD
Newport Beach Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 62 reviews

Mini vs. full tummy tuck

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}

Make sure with your board certified plastic surgeon that you are a good candidate for a mini tummy tuck vs. a standard tummy tuck. Although the recovery and healing time may be less with a mini, you may not have the best results possible. A mini tummy tuck only involves work below the belly button. This includes the removal of loose skin and tissue compared to a full tummy tuck which involves rectus muscle repair and the removal of loose and stretched skin. Liposuction and a new belly button is also done to help improve the body's contour and look. There are very few women who can benefit from just a mini tummy tuck.


{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}
A mini is usually less uncomfortable that a full, simply because there is less muscle work done. Now, with the use of Exparel, a long acting 
local anesthetic, both mini and full tummy tucks are comfortable after surgery. Ask your surgeon.

Stephan Finical, MD
Charlotte Plastic Surgeon

Mini tummy tuck less painful than a full tummy tuck?

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}
Hello! Thank you for your question! I hope that these answers help! Tummy tuck is an excellent method for shaping the belly and create a flatter and sculpted abdomen after the procedure. This procedure will remove the excess skin/soft tissue of your lower abdomen and contour the areas of your belly. Also, abdominal wall tightening may optimize your result. Stretch marks to the level of your umbilicus will also be excised. Also, a continued healthy and active lifestyle prior to the procedure and afterwards is recommended in order to maintain the benefits that the procedure has given to you.

Once you are ready for the procedure, I would likely recommend a full tummy tuck with abdominal wall tightening. This would remove the excess skin/soft tissue and stretch marks while contouring your belly. The mini tummy tuck has limited usefulness and limited candidates as it truly only addresses excess skin in a small area above your pubis. It will not address your abdominal wall and the tightening of such, frequently needed to achieve a shapely abdominal wall. While the recovery time is shorter, the benefits afforded to you by a full tummy tuck are much greater and will optimize your result.  I think that the results will vastly be improved with this procedure over a mini tummy tuck and is worth the extra cost, recovery time, slightly longer incision, and pain that go along with it.  You should consult with a board-certified plastic surgeon well-versed in body contouring procedures at anytime to go over options to assist you in deciding which procedure(s) would be right for you. Best wishes!

Lewis Albert Andres, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

Pain Following Full & Mini Tummy Tucks Are Not Excessive

{{ voteCount >= 0 ? '+' + (voteCount + 1) : (voteCount + 1) }}
The pain and discomfort from a mini tummy tuck should be expected to be somewhat less than a full tummy tuck.The actual difference however, is probably not very great.Fortunately, the pain in these two procedures is normally not excessive.If you are considering either of these two procedures then you should expect that your surgeon will provide you with enough pain medication to get through the recovery period.

For a simple and illustrated explanation of tummy tuck and body contouring procedures, watch my video.

John J. Edney, MD
Omaha Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 133 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.