Do I need a full Tummy Tuck? (photo)

Hi - I am a mother of three and recently (4 weeks ago) had a mini tummy tuck. I have always been slim but had crinkly skin which was very obvious upon bending forward and I wanted it corrected. The mini tummy tuck included muscle repair. Everything is great except now when I bend forward I still have crinkly akin about the belly button and I would even go so far as to say it's worse!! Is there anything I can do?? Thank you in advance for answering my questions!

Doctor Answers 8

Full tummy tuck...

Greetings Faye.

I would have preferred to perform a full tummy tuck with that much loose skin. That's my best guess based on your photos and I would have to confirm by examining you first. At this point, wait a full year then consider revision to a full tummy tuck....

See board certified plastic surgeons only.

Best wishes, Dr. ALDO

Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 201 reviews


You have what appears to be loose skin mostly above the belly button.  This makes you a candidate for reverse abdominoplasty as well as regular or conventional abdominoplasty.  Sometimes a reverse abdominoplasty can be done with incisions only beneath the breasts.  See your surgeon for a consult.

Richard Zienowicz, MD
Providence Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 58 reviews

Loose upper abdominal skin

Thank you for posting a question.  If surgery was only 4 weeks ago, your appearance could change for several months.  In future if you are still dissatisfied with your appearance, it is possible to have a full TT after a mini TT.

William Andrade, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 63 reviews

Dr. Derby Sang

Thank you for your question and your photo.

A mini TT does not include tightening of the upper abdominal skin. i recommend you to visit your doctor and go over all your concerns. 

Best of luck.

Derby Sang Caputo, MD
Dominican Republic Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 77 reviews

Skin above the belly button

Hello and thank you for posting photos along with your question. It would be helpful to see pre-operative photos and of photos of you post operatively while standing up straight. You are only 4 weeks out and still have some continued healing to do and some of that may improve. A mini tummy tuck does not address skin above the belly button. To determine whether you would have benefitted from a full tummy tuck is hard to say without having seen you before your surgery. If you have loose skin with poor elasticity then "wrinkling" can sometimes get worse if liposuction is performed because the skin doesn't snap back like it should and normally does. You didn't mention if lipo was performed or not. If you stand straight and there is no wrinkling and you only see it when you bend forward then there may not be much you need to do. As some of my colleagues have stated below, you should consider some skin tightening modalities because these are non-surgical. If it REALLY bothers you then a couple of options are to consider having a full tummy tuck but this would likely be difficult since you already had a mini. You would possibly end up with a vertical component to the incision. Another option would be to do a reverse abdominoplasty that would remove excess skin from the upper abdomen but would leave you with incisions under your breasts. Hope this helps!

Ankur Mehta MD

Ankur Mehta, MD
Sugar Land Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 17 reviews

Skin wrinkling when bent is normal

Hi fayeG.  This is a common concern and inquiry with tummy tuck surgery. The wrinkling is related to the loss of skin elasticity and thickness that occurs with aging.  It is normal to have wrinkling of skin when you bend over, and this would not have resolved with a full tuck.  (Children exhibit the same and had you been tightened enough to show no wrinkling when bent, you likely would not be able to stand erect or bend backwards). Skin tightening procedures may be of some benefit, like Profound radiofrequency microneedling.  Your PS may have alternative technologies, so let them know your concerns.  Good luck!

Vaishali B. Doolabh, MD, FACS
Jacksonville Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

Limitations of mini tummy tuck

your picture shows to limitations of the mini tummy tuck, which does not include tightening of the upper abdominal skin. It may be difficult to convert to a full tummy tuck without a T-closure but that is probably your best option. There are several variations to consider.

Richard Baxter, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 52 reviews


The mini tummy tuck did not address the loose skin of your upper abdomen. You could try radio-frequency treatments to see if you can achieve some skin tightening. Otherwise, a full tummy tuck might be needed.

Connie Hiers, MD
San Antonio Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 13 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.