Tummy Tuck to Remove Stretch Marks and Improve Belly Button?

I'm 21 and would like to remove stretch marks, tighten up the skin and improve the appearance of my navel. What procedure(s) should I look into? Am I a good candidate for Tummy Tuck?

Doctor Answers 16

Improve belly button and diastasis recti with tummy tuck

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You would unquestionably benefit from a tummy tuck. The question is which one.

You have issues with the appearance of the belly button. This is primarily due to the spreading of the stomach muscles, or diastasis recti. The problem is present both above and below the belly button.

It doesn't appear you have a lot of loose skin. Therefore a more limited incision, umbilicoplasty and complete repair of the diastasis all the way up even above the belly button would be my recommendation. In our practice, we refer to this procedure as a Hybrid tummy tuck.

A full tummy tuck will also do the same job, but the incision will be longer. A full tummy tuck is more efffective at removing stretch marks if they fall below the belly button, but it would be a shame to do it in a patient such as yourself.

Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 194 reviews

Possibly mini tummy tuck

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A tummy tuck could help but I don't think it would be able to remove all of the stretchmarks you have, particularly above your belly button. If you're okay with that, you may be a candidate for a mini tummy tuck since you don't appear to require extensive correction.

Full Tummy Tuck required to repair muscles and belly button

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Thank you for your question. From your photograph you appear to have split abdominal muscles. Typically a full abdominoplasty is required to repair the muscles and improve the belly button. However you do not have a lot of loose skin which would require a higher Tummy Tuck incision.

be sure to consult a plastic surgeon who is certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, experienced and has an excellent reputation in your community.Only stretch marks below the belly button would be removed during abdominoplasty. Stretch marks left after your surgery can be treated with the 1540 non-ablative fractional erbium laser.

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Good candidate for an abdominoplasty

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I think you would get a satisfactory result with a standard abdominoplasty and diastasis recti repair. The skin will be removed in an elliptical pattern from the umbilicus to a point just above the pubic bone.  The stretch marks above the umbilicus will look better when the skin is stretched tight but the will not be removed just lowered down.   There is always a possibility of making a bad scar but attention to detail and using standard plastic surgical techniques can keep this to a minimum.

Jeffrey Zwiren, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Mini tummy tuck may be the answer

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Based on the picture you have provided, I do not feel you are a candidate for a full tummy tuck. You do not appear to have enough excess skin/ fatty tissue to remove for this procedure. A mini tummy tuck, which only addresses the area below your belly button may be a possibility. The problem is however, this procedure may address the muscle laxity you appear to have, but will not significantly remove enough skin to address all of your stretch marks. In addition, you would be left with a long scar across your lower abdomen. Without my being able to examine you, it would be difficult to tell you whether it would be worth under going this procedure to address your stretch marks and belly button concerns. I would recommend seeing a board certified plastic surgeon for an evaluation to see if he/she feels you would benefit from a mini tummy tuck.

Good luck

David A. Robinson, MD
Munster Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

Options for abdominal contouring

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You are a bit young for a tummy tuck which is a large operation, painful, and leaves a long scar.  Is the long scar worth getting rid of stretch marks?

You appear to have a diastasis recti.  You also may or may not have an umbilical hernia, but I can't be sure.

Tummy tuck improves some though not all stretch marks

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Stretch marks that are a result of rapid weight loss or gain, or as a result of pregnancy can be improved by tummy tuck. It is important to understand, though, that the stretch marks that are present above the belly button are not eliminated, only moved lower down on the abdomen as this is the skin that will be repositioned after the loose skin of the lower abdomen is eliminated. Also, it takes more than stretch marks to make a good candidate for a tummy tuck. Skin laxity is the key. A significant laxity in the muscle of the abdomen may also lead to a form of tummy tuck.

Your picture does not suggest that tummy tuck is an appropriate choice for you. Considering the scar, correction of the wide open belly button, called an umbilicoplasty may be an option to you.

Best of luck.

Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 44 reviews

A mini-tummy tuck can improve the appearance of your belly button and tighten your abs

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Hello - It appears as though you're an excellent candidate for a mini-tummy tuck. This is where a small incision is made at the bikini line and the belly button is contoured into a more aesthetically pleasing shape and the abdominal muscles can also be tightened. The recovery takes about 1-2 weeks with minimal pain and discomfort.

Full Tummy Tuck for loose belly skin and undesireably belly button

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In your situation there is no substitute for a physical examination.

During this appointment, the surgeon will determine if they believe all the skin from the umbilicus to the pubis can be removed.

Your history of weight gain and loss and/or pregnancy is very important as well.

If you have not had children, you may want to defer the surgery until a time that are you have completed bearing children

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 86 reviews

Tummy tuck for stretch marks belly button appearance

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I do not recommend a full tummy tuck in a 21 year like you as pictured here. It is a mistake, and I disagree with any poster who would recommend this surgery for you. I base this from the photo and I am concerned about your realistic expectations. Go see 3 boarded plastic surgeons.

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.