Mini or full TT? (Photo)

Had 3 consultations and 3 opinions. Dr. Teitlebaum, Dr. Knotts and Dr. Mesbahi. Liked them all but got different feedback. I would rather have a less invasive procedure and thinking of CoolSculpt and all 3 said it won't get me in a bikini (yes I'm vain). I was told a mini TT, full TT and just lipo, which makes me want more opinions. I don't want a bad tummy job but not sure what to do. Please help!

Doctor Answers 14

Mini Tummy Tuck/Abdominoplasty/Liposuction/Vaser High Definition Procedures/Tummy Tuck Revision

Thank you for your question.

From your photos, you appear to be an excellent candidate for a full tummy tuck with Vaser H definition liposculpture to your hips and back.  You should get a great result from liposculpture, giving you a more contoured and hourglass shape with better projection to your buttocks.

Vaser Hi Definition liposuction uses the concepts of negative and positive spaces in relation to the underlying bony and muscle anatomy to define areas such as your six pack and create an athletic looking physique.

The best way to assess and give true advice would be an in-person exam.

Please see a board-certified plastic surgeon that specializes in aesthetic and restorative plastic surgery.

Dr. Schwartz

Board Certified Plastic Surgeon

#RealSelf100Surgeon

#RealSelfCORESurgeon

Tummy Tuck options

The amount of excess skin typically determines the length of the incision required to remove that excess skin. As a general rule, a short incision only allows a small amount of skin removal. A longer incision and resulting scar (as in a full tummy tuck) will allow the surgeon to remove more skin and tighten the entire abdominal wall.  This is the important thing to consider when looking at this type of surgery. Don't compromise the results with a shorter scar if it won't deliver the results you want. A consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon with an expertise in tummy tucks and body contouring should be able to show you what you can expect. In my practice in the San Francisco Bay Area I have come to the conclusion that the happiest patients are those that have realistic expectation on what a procedure will and won’t do for them. Good luck! 

Dean Vistnes, M.D. 

Vistnes Plastic Surgery 

San Francisco Bay Area

#realself #tummytuck #drdeanvistnes

M. Dean Vistnes, MD
Bay Area Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 42 reviews

Tummy tuck for loose skin

Your photo suggests that loose skin is a concern, and for this reason, CoolSculpting and liposuction will not help as they’re not designed to tighten skin. A tummy tuck tightens loose skin and eliminates unwanted fat as well, therefore it may be a better option for you. If you have loose skin above your belly button, then a full tummy tuck is recommended. If you just have loose skin below your belly button, then a mini tummy tuck is better.

Mini or full tummy tuck?

Thank you for the question and picture. Based on your pregnancy   photographs and stated goals, you will do best with a full tummy tuck operation. In my practice, I would not offer you a mini tuck operation.     Generally speaking, the “ideal” patient for tummy tuck surgery is one who has completed pregnancies, is psycho socially/emotionally/financially stable, has an excellent social support system surrounding him/her, is capable of arranging enough recovery time, does not smoke and who has reached a long-term stable weight.



 In my opinion, the mini tummy tuck 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 the vast majority of patients who have had pregnancies and/or weight loss a full abdominoplasty is necessary to achieve the desired results.   When the time is right, seek consultation with board-certified plastic surgeons who can demonstrate significant experience helping patients achieve the types of outcomes you would be pleased with.   You may find the attached link, dedicated to tummy tuck surgery concerns, helpful to you as you learn more. Best wishes. 

A Full Tummy Tuck for the Best Result

Evaluating your profile photo, I will also tell you that CoolSculpting or just liposuction will leave you with excess hanging skin and fat along with loose abdominal muscles.  Because you have "hooding" (excess hanging skin) above your belly button, you are not a good candidate for just a mini tummy tuck since a mini will not take care of the loose tissue and muscles in your upper abdomen.  

Try this:  If, when you bend over at your waist you have loose skin and muscles, only a full tummy tuck will correct that so that you can wear that bikini!

Do discuss with your plastic surgeon how low you would like your incision to be based on the type of bikini bottom you would like to wear.   It also helps to bring in the bottom for marking before surgery.   Best Wishes!

Mini vs full tummy tuck: How to decide

Of course you should never substitute the opinions you get online over those of qualified surgeons who have actually seen you, but my guess is that you will get the best result from a full tummy tuck. The position of your belly button is low, which means that it will be easy to keep the scar low while tightening the whole abdomen. Because you have some skin laxity, liposuction or Coolsculpting are out. For this type of procedure, it is also best to have it done close to where you live if there is someone qualified.

Richard Baxter, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

Mini or full TT? )

from your photograph it is evident that you have moderate skin excess of some standing. Whilst I am a fan of Cool Sculpting, there is limited ability to tighten skin with Cool Sculpting alone. Cool Sculpting or liposuction will improve the contour by thinning down the fat; probably one sitting for the liposuction and possibly more than one sitting with Cool Sculpting but then no cutting with the fat freezing. 

The lax skin if still present would then need to be removed separately later on. Or you could go for it in one stage with surgery to include liposuction at the expense of the scar of the TT. Looking at your photographs most of the problem is located below the belly button and so if that is your main concern you would only need to have the mini TT and so less scarring. 

Of course you will need to discuss the above in some detail and relate it to your aims for outcome with your plastic surgeon specialist.

Best wishes on your tummy rejuvenation journey!

Tariq Ahmad, MBBChir, FRCS(Plast)
London Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Tummy tuck/liposuction

Based on your pictures,looks like you would be  a good candidate for a full tummy tuck with muscle tightening for a flatter abdomen,and liposuction of your sides for a better contour. Please consult with  a board certified PS.  Best of luck!

Mini or full TT?

I think that liposuction is out of the question as well as noninvasive fat removal. Your main problem is loose skin. Your best results will come from a full tummy tuck. A modified full tummy tuck or mini tummy tuck may be an answer.

Tummy tuck

Thank you for your question.  Keep in mind that less invasive procedures give less significant results.  If you want to narrow your waist line, flatten the stomach and remove the excess skin that is visible on your photo the full TT is your best option. 

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.