Options to Correct Stomach After Mini Tummy Tuck?

I had a Mini Tummy Tuck 6 weeks ago. My belly button looks like a long line and surrounded with loose skin. I also have a bulge over the incision. My plastic surgeon said I cannot have a full Tummy Tuck anymore because he cut the belly button from the stalk. The only blood supply to the belly button now is through skin, so he can't cut skin around it. What are my other options do I have to correct my stomach?

Doctor Answers 7

Mini or full tummy tuck?

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Unfortunately there are no good options in regards to the umbilicus given the type of surgery that has been done. Although a full tummy tuck  is an option you will need to be prepared to lose the umbilicus or have one re-created (usually with less than ideal results).

In general, 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 to work with a well experienced board-certified plastic surgeon to obtain advice (based on good ethics and judgment) to  improve your chances of a successful outcome and minimize the need for further surgery.
I hope this helps.


Mini Tummy Tuck VS Full Tummy Tuck

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A full abdominoplasty (tummy tuck) probably would have been a better option for you. If your original surgeon is a board certified plastic surgeon I would suggest that you schedule a post-operative evaluation to discuss your concerns and learn more about the specific treatment options which would best address your needs. If you have lost confidence or your surgeon is not a board certified plastic surgeon, I would suggest that you obtain a second opinion with an experience, reputable, board certified plastic surgeon. Best wishes!

Abdomen options

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You probably would have been a better candidate to have a full tummy tuck initially. You can always opt for  a reverse abdominoplasty or perhaps a full abdominoiplasty and a later umbilical reconstruction.

How to correct a mini tummy tuck

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There are multiple ways to correct a Mini tummy tuck. Keep in mind that after a mini tummy tuck you should expect a significant recovery process this may last up to 6 to 8 months. If after that time, you still are unsatisfied with the results there are multiple things that we can do. The bellybutton can be repaired within the local plastic to improve the shape, change the position, or remove a small of the extra skin above the bellybutton. The tummy tuck scar itself may be made thinner or placed in a lower position once you have enough laxity in your abdominal tissues to allow them to reach their new location.


Belly button after mini-tuck

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Thanks for your question -

This is a challenging situation. Once the umbilicus (belly button) has been separated from its native blood suppy it makes repeat abdominoplasty more challenging because you cannot reposition the umbilicus relative to the abdominal skin.

A repeat mini in combination with liposuction may be an option but it is likely that you're umbilicus will likely be positioned more inferiorly than you might prefer.

A more drastic option would be a full abdominoplasty with creation of a new belly button. Be prepared for this to not look as natural as your original belly button.

I hope this helps.

You can have a full after a mini tummy tuck but you may need neo-umbilicoplasty

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This is a difficult problem and you may want to risk losing your belly button and having a neo-umbilicoplasty performed.

Your surgeon is correct and you may want to obtain other opinions to corroborate this. However, it really depends on how unhappy you are with the appearance with your abdomen.

How attached are you to your belly button?

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Looks like you are realizing the limitations of the mini-tummy tuck.

I don't think that there is much question that your tummy would have the flattest appearance if you went back and did a full Tummy Tuck. Liposuction of the abdomen without removing the excess skin would improve things, but the bulge over the scar wouldn't be eliminated.

The worst case scenario for your belly button might be to go ahead with the full tummy tuck anyway, and let whatever happens to your belly button happen -- there might be a few options for revising it later.

Give yourself some time, and take the advice of your board certified plastic surgeon. It is always a little tough to make suggestions off of pictures alone. The examination is very critical.

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.