Laser for Tightening the Skin in the Abdominal Area

I was told by a plastic surgeon that my stomach muscles were very tight and I didn't need a tummy tuck. My skin isn't loose nor sagging. The area in the center of my abs around the navel area is what is a little loose which of course makes my navel droop. What the plastic surgeon recommended I do was to check into having laser in that area to tighten it. He doesn't do the laser himself. I am asking this to see if you all would agree with him. If it does tighten it how long does it last?

Doctor Answers 7

Thermage vs laser for tightening abdominal skin

The good news is that you don't need a tummy tuck, the bad news is that there are very limited options for tightening the skin in the central abdomen. Laser treatments tend to work best in the face, but Thermage has some success for abdominal skin if it isn't too loose.

Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 52 reviews

Laser for loose skin


Lasers have enjoyed broad applications within the field of cosmetic surgery.  They are frequently used in facial skin resurfacing, hair removal, and the treatment of vascular lesions.  As far as laser efficacy in tightening abdominal skin, I have been unimpressed.  Laser liposuction marketers claim that this treatment removes fat and tightens skin where applied.  I have found that laser lipo often leads to less bruising and a faster recovery than tradtional liposuction.  As far as skin tightening, however, this effect is subtle at best.  Additionally, laser treatments are generally expensive and outcomes are variablie depending on skin tone and elasticity.  It's never a bad idea to seek additional opinions.  In short, if your skin laxity is very mild, one or multiple laser treatments may help, but the cost will probably outweigh the benefits.

Good luck!

Jason Hess, MD
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 11 reviews

Laser to tighten skin

There are many lasers and devices out there proclaiming to tighten skin. The outcomes can be quite variable from person to person. Some patients may see a subtle tightening effect and they are pleased, others may not have much of a result. It is also a function of having realistic expectations. Laser tightening will never get close to results from surgical skin tightening. I would check into it. Make sure you go to a board certified physician and are able to view consistent before and after photos. 

Hayley Brown, MD, FACS
Las Vegas Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 88 reviews

Laser for Tightening the Skin in the Abdominal Area

A posted photo sure would have helped determine if you are a candidate for external laser or internal laser (Smart Lipo). My recommendation is to try the Thermage with the understanding it is MANY sessions and could be a failure and waste of $'s. As for Smart Lipo or any laser lipo the results maybe better. Seek opinions. 

Darryl J. Blinski, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 173 reviews

Laser Skin Tightening

Laser treatment either externally or internally via Smartlipo or any other brand laser can help with mild skin tightening.  However, if you have loose or hangning skin, then there is no way to achieve a tight appearance short of a surgical procedure such as abdominoplasty / tummy tuck.

David Shafer, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 75 reviews

Non-surgical skin tightening of the abdomen

Smartlipo or other non-invasive methods to tighten the skin just do not work with any certainty.  There are some newer RF modalities such as Elixis that show some promise but at this point it is wait and see. 

Jeffrey Zwiren, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

Laser for tightening abdominal skin is NO SUBSTITUTE for tummy tuck

Despite the promise of this technology, I have not been impressed with the limited skin tightening achieved by these lasers or radiofrequency technology devices. It may work for minor cases such as yours and I would discuss realistic expectations with your laser practitioner.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 81 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.