What Are my Options for my Ugly Stomach? 3 C-sections and Scared of a Tummy Tuck? (photo)

I am 41 and have had 3 c sections and I cant get this stomach toned up :( I am a little scared of a Tummy tuck because of the pain I experienced from the c-sections. Are there any non-invasive procedures that could solve my problem? thanks in advance!

Doctor Answers 12

Tummy tuck

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Your best option is clearly a full tummy tuck probably with muscle tightening.  the recovery will be somewhat easier than your C-section, but it does involve a long scar.  Unfortunately, other options such as a mini tummy tuck or lipo simply will not give you as good a result.  So called non invasive procedures, such as layering the skin, simply will not work.

Tummy tuck will give you best result

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Due to the apparent laxity of skin, I would recommend a tummy tuck for the best result. The scar can be kept quite low and the  resulting contour will be much better than any type of liposuction procedure. Please meet with a few board certified plastic surgeons for an in depth evaluation in person. The scar of a tummy tuck is typically well worth the contour that you will receive in exchange.Best wishes, Dr.William Bruno




Non-Surgical Alternatives To A Tummy Tuck

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Your concerns are shared by many women who wish to improve the appearance of her stomach without undergoing a tummy tuck procedure.  Unfortunately, there are no non-surgical options to address the stretched skin and bulging muscles in the abdominal area.  A tummy tuck is designed to remove the excess skin and fat as well as tighten the muscles of your abdominal wall.  I have had many patients who have been working with a 'trainer' who claims that they can improve their abdominal area with exercise alone.  This is highly unrealistic and leads to significant disappointment (although the benefits of an exercise routine are fantastic in other ways!).  

You should discuss your primary concerns with a plastic surgeon who can guide you appropriately to your best treatment option.  Believe it or not, most of my patients tell me that the tummy tuck recovery is much easier than the c-section recovery.  I hope this information helps.  Best wishes!

Tummy tuck is the best option for a prominent stomach following 3 c-sections

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A tummy tuck is still the best option for someone like yourself, who has had 3 c-sections.  There are no non-invasive procedures or treatments which will remove the excess stretched skin and also tighten the abdominal muscles.  local pain blocks or pain pumps can be used after the surgery along with oral pain medications and muscle relaxants to help minimize post operative discomfort.  Best wishes.

Options for an ugly stomach.

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Thank you for your question. GIven your history and photos the only real option is an abdominoplasty or tummy tuck.  Any other "non invasive" procedure will not give you a satisfactory result and would be a total waste of your money. If pain is a concern there are a number of different options to control this problem, such as the use of pain pumps. These devices slowly pump in a local anesthesia for several days after surgery to control any discomfort.  I would seek consultation with a board certified plastic surgeon and discuss your concerns with him/her. 

Donald M. Brown, MD (retired)
San Francisco Plastic Surgeon

Ugly stomach options

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I'm afraid there are no non-invasive ways to fix your abdominal problem.  Tummy tuck, however, should do the trick.  It is painful for the first few days post-op, but with pain meds. and perhaps a pain pump, you should be able to tolerate this well.

Michael Leff, MD (retired)
Bellevue Plastic Surgeon

Tummy Tuck

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Based on your pictures, you look like a good candidate for tummy tuck.  However, you would need to be evaluated in person to know for sure.  During the tummy tuck, your extra skin, fat and stretch marks would be excised (removed) and your muscles tightened.  There are no non-invasive techniques that would match the results that you could achieve with tummy tuck surgery.


Good Luck.

What Are my Options for my Ugly Stomach? 3 C-sections and Scared of a Tummy Tuck?

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Thanks for the posted photos. Unfortunately there are no non invasive therapies that could correct your abdominal issues. The choice is a TUMMY TUCK. 

“Noninvasive” Solution for “Ugly Stomach?

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Thank you for the question and pictures.

Based on your history and pictures provided, I think you are an excellent candidate for tummy tuck surgery. Any other surgical procedure or “noninvasive” procedure will be ineffectual and a waste of your time/resources.

It may be helpful to you to know,  that many of my patients who have had C-sections and tummy tuck surgery,  report that the tummy tuck  recovery  is less painful than  what they experienced after C-section surgery.

I would suggest that you consult with well experienced board-certified plastic surgeons;  make sure you see lots of examples of their work and ask to speak with patients who have had similar surgery performed.

As you are considering whether or not to proceed with tummy tuck surgery a few words of advice may be helpful to you:

1. Make sure you are doing the procedure for the right reasons (for yourself)  and that you have realistic expectations.  Be aware that an improvement in the “problem area” may not translate to an overall improvement in your life   situation.  You are bound to be disappointed with results of the procedure if your motivation for doing the surgery is not internally driven.

2. Time your surgery carefully; generally, it is not a good idea to have surgery done during or immediately after a stressful period in life (for example divorce or death of a loved one). The additional stress of surgery will undoubtedly be  more challenging to deal with if a patient's emotional reserves our already exhausted. Remember, that an improvement in your physical appearance will not translate to an improvement in your life situation.

3. If possible speak to patients who have undergone similar procedures and query them about the toughest times of their recovery period. Any practical hints previous patients can provide may be very helpful.

4. Make sure you are aware of potential complications that may arise how to reach your surgeon if necessary.

5. Make sure you have a strong and patient support system (several people if possible) in place who have time/patience to take care of you. Arrange for professional nursing if any doubt exists regarding the availability and/or stamina  of your caretakers.

6. Be patient with the healing process, understanding that it will take several weeks to months to feel “normal” again. It may also take many months/year to see the end results of your surgery.

7. Be prepared to distract your mind with things of interest such as books, magazines, and movies.

8. Expect less of yourself; do not go back to work, school or chores too early and let others take care of you (for a change).

9. Pick your surgeon carefully (a well experienced board-certified plastic surgeon) and trust in his/her advice. Keep in close communication with your surgeon and do not hesitate to communicate questions/concerns and the   emotional swings that you may experience.

10. Resume all medications that you were using preoperatively when cleared by your plastic surgeon and stop the use of narcotics and sedatives as soon as feasible after surgery.

11. Keep in mind the end results as you go through the tougher emotional times after your surgery.

I hope this helps.

Best wishes.

Full tummy tuck is likely your best option.

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Thank you for your question and the photos.

A full tummy tuck is likely your best option.

To be sure, see two or more board-certified plastic surgeons in your area for a full and complete evaluation to make sure you are a good candidate and that it is safe for you to have surgery. I hope this helps.

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.