Should I Have a Mini Abdominal Plasty or Full? I've Had Two Evaluations, Both Different. (photo)

5'4" 150# 49 years old, one large baby!

Doctor Answers 29

Mini Vs Full Abdominoplasty

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Although a full abdominoplasty or tummy tuck is a fairly standard operation, this is not the case with a mini which is defined differently among different plastic surgeons.  I would therefore make 2 suggestions.  First of all, find out exactly what a mini means to the surgeon who suggested it.  I also suggest a third consultation following which you should be better informed to make the decision which is right for you.

Louisville Plastic Surgeon

Full or Mini Tummy Tuck

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This is a very common question.  As always, pictures cannot compare to a full examination by a board certified plastic surgeon to help determine the procedure that would be the best for you.  That said, even though it can be hard to tell from just a single photograph (front view only), you appear to be in that small range of patients that could go with either a full tuck or get a nice result from a mini-tuck with additional liposuction to the upper abdomen. The best procedure for you depends on what you are trying to accomplish. A full tuck will make your entire abdomen flatter and tighter at the expense of a longer recovery, longer scar and a small scar around your belly button. A mini-tuck would primarily treat the lower abdominal bulge and remove some of the loose skin but would not be as flat or tight as a full tuck, but does carry the advantage of shorter recovery and less pain.  So this can be a difficult decision, but if you want to have superior long lasting results you will never regret going with the full tummy-tuck.  Hope this helps.

Erez Sternberg, MD
Jacksonville Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

Full vs mini tummy tuck

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Based on your photos, I think it would be reasonable to chose either procedure.  However, in my experience if you are willing to accept a longer scar, you will get a better contour and be happier with the full tummy tuck.  I have found that in women who only have a mild amount of skin laxity (loose skin) above the navel before a mini tummy tuck, often find that small amount of loose skin to be more noticeable after the procedure.  Good luck. 

Laurence Weider, MD
Dallas Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 102 reviews

Mini tummy tuck versus full

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Based on one photograph, it appears as though you have excess skin above the umbillicus and some abdominal wall laxity. A full abdominoplasty (tummy tuck) with some added liposuction would give you the best option, in my opinion. Good luck.

Donna Rich, MD
Webster Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

Full tummy tuck (abdominoplasty) v. mini tummy tuck

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Diastasis recti (or rectus diastasis) is a common condition following childbirth.  Depending upon the extent and location of the diastasis (or separation), you may be better served by a full tummy tuck (abdominoplasty).  A full abdominoplasty allows greater visualization and treatment of the diastasis


Loren Schechter, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon

Mini vs Full Tummy Tuck

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When deciding on a full vs mini tummy tuck one must evaluate both the skin and muscle above and below the belly button. Not only the quantity of the skin but the quality. Finally, one must ask the patient what their goal is in their final appearance. Based on your pictures, I would lean more to a full tummy tuck. Only a full physical exam could confirm this. I think you should have a great result!

Brian Joseph, MD
Orlando Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 52 reviews

The advantage of a mini is a shorter scar and less downtime

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Based on the one photo you are that rare person who is right in the middle of both procedures.  Your belly button seems low but it might be the angle of the photo.  To avoid a belly button scar the mini would be the best procedure for you with liposuction around the belly button area.

If you need your muscles tightened then the full abdominoplasty would be the preferred procedure.  This would get you flatter, but takes longer to recover and involves a longer scar and a belly button scar.

The choice is up to you.  But make sure your surgeon is a Board Ceritied Plastic Surgeon with lots of experience in both procedures.

Full or mini tummy tuck

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You will find that no one can view your photo and give you good advise. The decision will come down to how much of the abdominal fullness is due to muscular laxity or diastasis, how much skin laxity is present above the umbilicus, and how much skin laxity is present as you sit down or bend forward. Then you need consider your goals and how snug you expect your abdomen to be, and how the scar lines up with your lifestyle. A third opinion might be needed.

Best of luck,

Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 44 reviews

abdominalplasty versus mini abdominoplasty

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In my opinion liposuction with a C-section length skin excision or mini abdominoplasty would be the best procedure for you. Your skin and muscles above the umbilicus look strong so I don't think a full abdominoplasty is necessary. I think liposuction of the abdomen will give you more skin contracture of the entire abdomen and the only skin that may be loose after liposuction is the skin below the umbilicus.

I would even recommend liposuction 1st and seeing if the skin contracts on its own and then coming back at a later date and under local anesthesia excising the extra skin if it's necessary. If you look at my website. Before and after photos of the case where this was done but the skin was much looser than yours.








Wendell Perry, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 234 reviews

Mini or Full TT

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In my experience of over 30 years, a full tummy tuck will give the BEST final appearance. If you are not going to have any more kids, then go for the gold.

William B. Rosenblatt, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 12 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.