Tummy Tuck vs. Exercise for Hanging Skin

Through diet and exercise, I have lost about 65-70lbs. I feel as though almost everything on my body has improved dramatically with the exception of my abdominal region. I can say that when I am standing it is not so bad, but the moment I bend or even sit all of the tightness in the area leaves completely. I am wondering, is losing this "hang" when I bend doable by diet and exercise alone- or will I need to surgically have it taken care of? Thank you for your time.

Doctor Answers 12

Tummy tuck

Congratulations on losing the weight!  The loose skin will only get looser.  The best way to get rid of it is by having a tummy tuck. It will not go away with exercise.

New York Plastic Surgeon
4.1 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Excess skin reduction

Even with further weight loss, you probably will still have hanging skin.  Based on your photo, no exercise in the world will remove the excess skin.

As all the other plastic surgeons have said, an abdominoplasty is your best option.

Congratulations on the weight loss.

Andrew Turk, MD
Naples Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 31 reviews

Tummy Tuck for the optimal result

Based on your photograph and history, you are the perfect candidate for a tummy tuck.   Congratulations on your 70 pound weight loss!!! That is amazing and your body will thank you for many years to come.   A tummy tuck will not only remove excess skin, but contour the feminine silhouette and add contour through tightening of the abdominal musculature and flank liposuction.  Liposuction alone does very little for skin elasticity after substantial weight loss.  

A few important considerations prior to surgery:

1.  Ensure your weight has stabilized and that you have maintained it for 6 months

2. Optimize your nutrition prior to surgery.  I typically recommend that all weight loss patients work with a dietician to learn how to maintain their new weight and optimize themselves for surgery.

3.  Do surgery at a weight you will maintain your longterm.  Large fluctuations in weight ( and pregnancy ) will affect the skin elasticity and take away from your result.

Paul S. Gill, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 86 reviews

Tummy Tuck vs Exercise

Exercise can certainly be beneficial in weight loss and improving one's general health.  It cannot, however, correct excess skin.  You will definitely need a tummy tuck to deal with the amount of ecxess skin visible on you photo.  Congratulations on the weight loss!

John Whitt, MD (retired)
Louisville Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

Tummy tuck or exercise to remove excess hanging skin

Based on your photo I think a tummy tuck will be the best option for you.  Diet and exercise are fantastic and you have obviously done a great job with that, but at this point you have a significant amount of loose skin that simply will not go away without surgery.  I also find that some patients in your situation feel so much better after the tummy tuck, in terms of comfort in clothing, confidence, etc, that it makes getting into the gym an easier process.  Good luck and continue all the hard work!

Shahram Salemy, MD, FACS
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 149 reviews

You need a tummy tuck!

Congratulations on the weight loss and your dedication to health and exercise!!!  But the extra skin will not go away unless you have a full TT.  This will give you a nice smooth flat abdomen and will reward you for all the hard work you have put in to get in shape!

Richard P. Rand, MD, FACS
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 67 reviews

Tummy Tuck Or Exercise?

Thanks for the question and picture.

You should be congratulated  for your successful weight loss.

Unfortunately,  the “hanging”  will not go away by any means except surgical intervention. The tummy tuck surgery will serve to remove the excess skin and subcutaneous tissues as well as “tighten up”  the abdominal wall muscles that have spread apart with weight gain/loss.

It would be in your best interests to consult with well experienced board-certified plastic surgeons.

I hope this helps.


Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,488 reviews

Excess loose skin needs surgery

I don't think that exercise alone will allow you to lose all the excess skin and fat that is apparent from your photograph.  I definitely feel that you will eventually need surgical tummy tuck operation to remove that excess skin and fat that developed after your weight loss.  Congratulations on losing the weight.  Now see a plastic surgeon to help you with that extra skin.

James Tang, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
3.4 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Loose belly skin = tummy tuck

In my opinion, you would achieve the best correction of this redundant skin with a full tummy tuck. While exercise is essential in improving the abdominal wall contours it will not correct skin laxity.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 81 reviews

Excess Skin-Exercise no Cure

When soemone has excess skin I tell them all the situps in the world will not help with getting rid of the excess skin.You simply have to cut it out;there is no other way.

Robert Brueck, MD
Fort Myers Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 62 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.