How low and how small can they make tummy tuck scar?

Doctor Answers 8

TT Scarring

The location and length of a tummy tuck scar is patient-specific as it depends on the patient’s anatomy and overall goal. A tummy tuck incision is placed in the very low abdomen, where it can be hidden with clothing and swimwear. When going to a consultation appointment, it can be helpful for patients to bring their favorite clothing item or swimsuit so that they can have an idea of where their incision will be hidden. Regarding the length of the scar, it depends on the amount of fat and loose skin that needs to be removed. For patients who just need a mini tummy tuck, the scar is shorter than for patients who need a full tummy tuck. Having an examination by a board-certified plastic surgeon will help you determine the location and length of your individual scar. Good luck in your research!

San Jose Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Low Placement of Small Tummy Tuck Incision

Hello and thank you for your question. Without seeing an images of what you are looking to have tightened it is hard to say exactly what would work best in your situation, however there are options of tummy tuck incisions all the way from mini-abdominoplasty to extended abdominoplasty.Mini-abdominoplasty tightens the lower abdominal wall and skin below the umbilicus, belly button, only (shortest scar). Modified abdominoplasty addresses conditions where just the muscle wall or just the abdominal skin requires repair. Standard abdominoplasty tightens all of the abdominal wall skin and muscles above and below the belly button. The scar can be altered or lowered to be hidden by most panty lines and bathing suits. (Standard scar). Extended abdominoplasty tightens the abdomen and the flanks or sides (longest scar extending around the flanks onto lower back.) A general anesthetic is most common, although mini-tucks may be done with local anesthetic and intravenous sedation. A standard abdominoplasty is generally an outpatient procedure, but extended abdominoplasty may require a short hospitalization of 1–2 days.

Jed H. Horowitz, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 109 reviews


The length and location of the tummy tuck scar is mostly patient dependent but there are a few guiding principles for the plastic surgeon. First, we like to keep the scar hidden, so placing it lower can be desirable. Often women have C-section scars that are quite low, and we do our best to incorporate these scars into the procedure. Second, we need the scar to be long enough to remove the excess skin in the abdomen without leaving behind "dog ears". "Dog ears" are prominent skin folds at the edges of a scar that can occur as the skin edges meet one another during closure after skin removal. Lengthening the incision can help remove potential dog ears, so the principle is to keep the scar as short as possible while doing our best to avoid dog ears. These are the principles but again, every patient is different. See a board certified plastic surgeon to help understand what works best for you. Hope that helps and good luck!

Salem Samra, MD
Middletown Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

Tummy tuck scars

Hi,Thank you for your question.  There are 2 ways to answer .  The first to say the scar is low and covered by your bikini, which is a true statement, but most photos don't actually show the scar, just the undergarment.  The scar length is really a function of how much vertical excess you have.  Its a difficult concept but it basically means the more extra skin you have, the longer the scar.  The height of the scar is somewhat more consistent.  We try to keep it between 2 and 3 inches above the pubic cleft.  Hope this helps.Beverly Friedlander, MD

Beverly Friedlander, MD
Short Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 16 reviews


In general, a plastic surgeon's goal is to make a scar as short as possible and in an area that no one will see. The length will depend on your anatomy and how much excess tissue needs to be removed. The more skin that needs to be removed, the longer the incision required. The scar should be in the bikini area but usually a safe distance for the external genitalia. I recommend full evaluation with a plastic surgeon to answer these very specific questions for you. Best of luck.

Erica Anderson, MD
Reston Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

Tummy tuck scar

Low and long is usually the best scar for a tummy tuck since with this scar additional skin and fat on your sides can be managed. The length of the scar, however, really depends upon your body type and the surgical goal. DrBurnett#realself100

Carlos Burnett, MD, FACS
Westfield Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 37 reviews

Tummy tuck scar

The placement and length of the scar depends largely upon your own anatomy, body shape, degree of excess skin, amount of local fat deposits, degree of diastasic (stretching of belly musculature.)  Often the length of the incision is used to minimize dog-ear formation at the sides as well.  That being said, the incision is ideally placed within your bikini line to "hide" it while wearing a two-piece bathing suit or underwear.  Only a one-on-one consultation and both a visual inspection and a feel of your tissues is needed to give you the best idea of what and what is not possible.

Tito Vasquez, MD, FACS
Southport Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Short scar tummy tuck

Hello and thank you for your question. If you are an appropriate candidate, a tummy tuck can be done through a low and short incision, all completely below the bikini line.  Your muscles can also be plicated resulting in a flat abdomen.  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 125 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.