Thinking of getting a tummy tuck? (photo)

Hi, Im 40 yrs old 115 lbs 5'2". I have some excess skin that Im pretty sure came from an abdominal lipo I had done about a year ago. I would love to have FLAT,very flat, TIGHT, muscle defined Abs, however I have seen horrrible scars and belly buttons to scare me away from the this procedure. Also, I don't know if my tummy is bad enough for a full TT, maybe a mini? -I think I'll go with a surgeon that can show me plenty of LOW, THIN beautiful scars and small almond shaped belly buttons.

Doctor Answers 20

Tummy tuck 4 me?

You are definitely a good candidate for a full tummy tuck.  It is not that unusual to convert a lipo job to a tummy tuck and most patients are quite happy.  The keys to a nice result are to keep the scar low and the umbilicus small.  A tummy tuck will give you a flat tummy, and even though there is a long scar, it fades away nicely with time.  Good luck!

San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

Full tummy tuck best option

Based on your photos, I feel a full tummy tuck would give you better results vs. a mini.  It would give you a better chance to achieve your surgical goals.  I would recommend a visit to a board certified plastic surgeon for an evaluation.  Incision placement can be done so that it is often covered by most bathing suits and undergarments.  There is no guarantee how you scar, but most who have this procedure have no issue with the way the incisions heal.

Mennen T. Gallas, MD
Katy Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

Excess skin to this degree really needs a full tummy tuck

The main point to consider when contemplating mini- versus full abdominoplasty is whether skin and fat laxity is limited to the area below the belly button or it extends higher.  In your case, the lax skin extends well above the belly button, so I think you would be very disappointed with a mini-tummy tuck.  the good news here though is that you are a very fit, trim lady with a great figure, no real stretch marks, and very good muscle tone in your tummy, and you would be an awesome candidate for a tummy tuck.  You are exactly the kind of patient I look for!  And I couldn't agree with you more about the low , thin scars and beautiful belly buttons.  Good luck.

Joseph L. Grzeskiewicz, MD
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 87 reviews

Thinking of getting a tummy tuck?

Thank you for your question and for the posted photos. 

You appear to be an excellent candidate for a full TT--slender build, excess skin. Very few patients are good candidates for a mini-TT. For that, the entire problem must be limited to the lower abdomen, clearly not the case here. 

The main incision should be concealed by your undies. The navel incision has varied patterns, none of which is clearly superior to the others, or we would all use the same technique. 

Most of the scar formation is genetic. All surgeons will see differing outcomes of scarring in different patients for the same procedure done the same way. By one year. most scars are thin and flat.
All the best. 

Jourdan Gottlieb, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 45 reviews

A full would be best...

It's so deceiving sometimes when the standing looks so different from the bending! I can see why you might be tempted to do just the mini, but I would recommend the full as well...Take your time and find a surgeon that has the before and after pics you like and the BB you prefer!

John J. Corey, MD
Phoenix Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 45 reviews

Full tummy tuck will give best result

Based on your photos, I would recommend a complete tummy tuck to remove the most amount of loose skin. A mini tummy tuck would not remove enough skin in my opinion. The scar is quite low and hidden in swimwear and underwear. I recommend consulting with a board certified plastic surgeon for a complete examination and for more information.

Best wishes,


William Bruno, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 377 reviews

Thinking of getting a tummy tuck? (photo)

Thank you for the detailed information and the very clear photos.  You are an excellent candidate for a full TT, a mini tuck will be a total waste.  First thing you have to understand, though, is that under identical circumstances, i.e. in the hands of experienced plastic surgeons certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, how your tummy tuck scar heals depends almost entirely on your body.  So no plastic surgeon can guarantee you a thin inconspicuous scar, and if anyone does you can be certain that they are not adequately experienced.  Secondly, most of the "horrible" belly buttons you have seen have probably been in the hands of unqualified unexperienced surgeons.  Experienced board-certified plastic surgeons usually can give you a very nice belly button.  So be very careful in planning your surgery and choosing your plastic surgeon.

Ruben B. Abrams, MD, FACS
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

Tummy tuck looks like your solution

Hello Modu1111

I know you don't want to go the route of a full tummy tuck. However, in my years of experience, doing a lesser procedure just gives a poor result, and wastes you money. There are always advantages and disadvantages to choosing a particular recommendation. A scar is one of them. As Specialist Plastic Surgeons,we position that scar in the most aesthetically pleasing line that we can. We use all our Specialist skills to minimise the scar. After that its up to your body. I must say, that after many tummy tucks, I have not had one patient say that if they would now go back to what they had before. 

Mark Edinburg, MBBCH, FRACS
Sydney Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

Full vs Mini Tummy Tuck

Thank you for your question.  Your photos demonstrate you grabbing a 2 to 3 inch fold of skin.  Since this skin is folded on itself, this equates to requiring a 4-6 inch skin excision.  Mini tummy tucks can only remove about 2 to 3 inches of redundant skin before causing distortion and malposition of the belly button.  So, you are a full tummy tuck candidate.  I personally always try to keep the tummy tuck scar as low as possible so that underwear and bikinis cover the scar.  And, I focus on keeping tension off of the skin repair, which will ultimately allow for a thin scar.  Finally, I routinely, but carefully thin the abdominal fat to allow your underlying muscle definition to show through.  Best wishes for a great outcome.  I would anticipate a great result for you given your starting position.

Gilbert Lee, MD
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 23 reviews

Full tummy tuck for best results with loose skin

When there is significant skin laxity, a tummy tuck is always a better choice than lipo. From the pictures you show, a full tummy tuck is going to give you the best results at this point. Scars should be low and thin, although there is variation in how people heat that is beyond the surgeon's control, and the preferred location for the scar has changed over the years. There are also different ideas about what the ideal belly button looks like so communication about your expectations is important.

Richard Baxter, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 53 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.