Can I Get Good Results from Liposuction or Mini Tummy Tuck?

I Do Not Want the Long Scar from a Tummy Tuck. 5'2", 118 lbs, no stretch marks, skin in relatively good condidtion with only small amount of loose skin. My stomach pooches out and has significant fatty deposits. I have had 3 kids. According to my doctor, I have some muscle separation, though not severe. I have been told that I may not have enough skin and thus would also need a short vertical scar in addition to the horizontal scar. I am not dissatisfied enough with my body to accept a hip to hip scar.

Doctor Answers 11

Mini tummy tuck

I think you would be a good candidate for a mini tuck. There would be a small incision very low down to gain access to the lower abs and muscle separation and also a small incision around the belly button to gain access to the upper abs. 

Recovery is relatively short on this from a daily living standpoint but heavy excercise would be limited for a number of weeks.

Bethesda Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 15 reviews


Dear Phoenix 830.

It is hard to tell anything from a photo. That being said, although I don't know your age you look fairly young. As well you don't appear to have what is known assiginificant  baby fluff; that loose fluffy tissue in the belly. You do seem to have some thickness of your torso that will be improved with a decrease in fat. I would be concerned about the amount of skin that you have not being enough to get a low lying abdominal scar in a tummy tuck.  It would appear you might be a good candidate for liposuction. In any event, you need to be seen in  person  by a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon to assist you in making a decision as to what is best for you. I hope that this is helpful for you . Jon Sattler, MD Board Certified Plastic Surgeon, Glendora, California.

Jon Sattler, MD
Glendora Plastic Surgeon
3.5 out of 5 stars 22 reviews

Mini-tummy tuck versus standard tummy tuck

It appears as though you're a great candidate for a mini-tummy tuck with liposuction.  You're muscles can be tightened this way as well and the scar will be shorter than the standard tummy tuck scar.

Jeffrey E. Schreiber, MD, FACS
Baltimore Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 200 reviews

Tummy tuck a very personal decision

In order for you to get rid of the stretch marks above your belly button you will require a full tummy tuck. You also have some abdominal laxity which will require sutures to be placed to tighten your core.  You certainly appear to be in good shape, but my recommendation is to go with a full tummy tuck.  I would speak with a plastic surgeon and relay your concern about limiting the length of the incision.  The only way to know if this is possible, is to meet with a plastic surgeon and have a full physical exam performed.  Good luck!

Raj S. Ambay, MD
Tampa Plastic Surgeon
4.3 out of 5 stars 34 reviews

Can I Get Good Results from Liposuction or Mini Tummy Tuck?

Thank you for your question and pictures.  I agree with your doctor that you probably do not have enough skin to do a full tummy tuck and get the incision real low.  In my practice, I would recommend SamrtLipo and a mini tummy tuck.  The SmartLipo will remove excess fat and help with a little more skin tightening and the mini tummy tuck will allow for tightening of the muscle and removing excess skin from the lower abdomen.

Rigo Mendoza, MD
Tampa Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 39 reviews

Mini Tummy Tuck

I would lean towards the mini TT.  Liposuction will make your skin more “loose”, even with laser, and with the many claims of tighter skin.  Yes the laser will make it tighter, but laser still falls short of the needed tightening.  Consider the mini TT, and the tighter skin from removal of the excess skin.  Have a consult with a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon and make a plan.

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

Mini or full tummy tuck?

Thank you for the question and picture.

It is hard to give you exact advice without direct examination  but I think you would be better off with no surgery rather than a mini tummy tuck.

In my opinion, 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.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,484 reviews

Mini tummy tuck usually yields a mini result

Based on your profile view photo - I would recommend a standard abdominoplasty to achieve tightening of the full length of your abdominal muscles. This can be done through a relatively short pelvic incision for patients that have minimal skin laxity, like you appear to have.

Scott C. Sattler, MD, FACS
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 65 reviews

Liposuction vs mini tummy tuck

From your photos and history, I believe you would get a much better result from a mini tummy tuck, possibly with some liposuction as well.  The lower abdominal bulge is most likely being caused by the separation of your abdominal muscles that occurred with your pregnancies.  this bulge could be corrected with the mini tummy tuck but not by liposuction alone.

Vincent D. Lepore, MD
San Jose Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 56 reviews

Mini versus standard tummy tuck

It is hard to assess you skin quality with the photos, but I would suggest that the photos look like you have no stretch marks and that you are fairly young.  The fat can be addressed with Liposuction alone, but if you do have a significant separation in the muscles, you may need a procedure to tighten the muscles. i.e. tummy tuck, or mini tummy tuck.   I too would be concerned that you do not have enough skin for a full tummy tuck, and would be hesitant to recommend that.

I  think you would get a great result from a mini tummy tuck and liposuction of the flanks.

That said, if you are planning more kids in the next few years, you may want to wait. You would likely lose most of the benefit if you get pregnant again.

Gordon Lewis, MD
Midlothian Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 23 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.