Do I need to have a muscle repair? (Photo)

Do I really have to have Muscle repair? Could I get by with a tummy tuck without MR and lipo? I would like to have a faster recovery time and less pain. I am ok with not being completely flat but don't want to have a huge protrusion. Would abdominal exercises make a difference?

Doctor Answers 13

Muscle repair?

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Thank you for your question and photos. You appear to be a very good candidate for a full abdominoplasty with liposuction and plication (repair) of the rectus abdominus muscles. With a surgery like this, it is best to do it right the first time. The elements of skin excision, liposuction, and repair of the muscle diastasis are critical in a tummy tuck. There will not be a significant extension of the recovery time from skin excision alone, and you are likely to be much more satisfied with the results. 

Consult with a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon and have all your questions answered. 

Good Luck,

Tummy tuck

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Hello and thank you for your question. Based on your photograph, you are a great candidate for a tummy tuck with liposuction.  This can be done through a low and short incision, all completely below the bikini line.  In order to determine if you need a muscle repair, a physical exam would be necessary to determine if you have a diastasis.  Make sure you specifically look at before and after pictures of real patients who have had this surgery performed by your surgeon and evaluate their results.  The most important aspect is to find a surgeon you are comfortable with. I recommend that you seek consultation with a qualified board-certified plastic surgeon who can evaluate you in person.

Best wishes and good luck.

Richard G. Reish, M.D.
Harvard-trained plastic surgeon

Richard G. Reish, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 174 reviews

Best result

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To achieve the best result(and likely the one you truely desire) you need a lipoabdominoplasty with MR. No way around it. You have loose skin both above and below your BB and you abd/waist could use the lipo contouring. best of luck with your future surgery

Do I need to have a muscle repair?

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Thank you for your question. Most people in you situation do benefit from a muscle repair during a tummy tuck in order to tighten and flatten the abdominal wall. Most people have a slight bulge that's most noticeable in the upper abdomen especially when doing sit ups. This is due to separation of the muscles. Unfortunately, no amount of excercise will reverse this problem. A physical exam by your plastic surgeon should be able to determine what degree of separation you have and how much of a benefit you would get from the muscle tightening. The reality is that most women after having children and gaining or loosing some weight have some degree of muscle separation. I hope this helps.

Do I need to have a muscle repair with tummy tuck?

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Thank you for your question.  There is little difference in recovery time whether a muscle repair is done or not.

Your plastic surgeon will examine you and determine if your rectus muscles are widely split or separated.  If they are a muscle repair is usually indicated.  Prior to a tummy tuck I would recommend losing some weight so that there is less fat beneath the skin.  The fat beneath the skin can prevent adequate tightening of the abdominal flap during a tummy tuck.  For more information please read the link below:

Don't skimp -- the recovery is nearly the same

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There truly is not a lot of difference in the recovery between a full tummy tuck and a mini.  The difference is how much better you'll look after a full compared to a mini! It's hard to comment on the muscle without an exam but based on how much extra skin you have, I would bet that your muscles are separated too.  Go for the full.  Good luck!

Robert S. Houser, DO
Columbus Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Do I need to have a muscle repair?

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Great question, for optimum result would recommend skin excision and lipo definitely, the muscle repair is up to you but for the best results yes! definitely recommend , recover should be around 2 weeks at the most, good luck!!

Jonathan Weiler, MD
Baton Rouge Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 93 reviews

Muscle Repair With Tummy Tuck

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Muscle repair is typically standard with a full Tummy Tuck for women who have had children. When a diastasis is present,  no amount of abdominal exercise will bring the muscles together. The result of skin removal without diastasis repair can be unpleasant. Typically, patients describe the sensation afterwards as feeling "tight" a manageable discomfort. I recommend that you talk with your Plastic Surgeon more about your concerns and expectations.

All the best

Tummy tuck + Lipo candidate, some advices:

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Thanks for the question.

In this regard, I recommend you a Full Tummy Tuck with muscle repair, to get a flat abdomen and waist and back Liposculpture, getting better curves especially in the waist, improving your body contour.

Finally, I suggested take the fat we get and transfer to the buttocks and hips, to mold them and get better volume, contour and butt projection, is that we know as "Brazilian Butt Lift" (BBL).

Kind regards

Emmanuel Mallol Cotes, MD
Dominican Republic Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 372 reviews

When muscle repair is necessary with tummy tuck

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It is not possible to tell from the photos whether or not you have a diastasis (separation) of the muscles. Most of the time it is beneficial but not always necessary. Exercise does not re-align the muscles if you have a diastasis. Lipo will not add to the recovery time and that does appear to be a good thing to include in your case. 

Richard Baxter, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 59 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.