What Type of Tummy Tuck Do I Need? (photo)

what type of tummy tuck do i need? i have seen three plastic surgeons. two said mini tummy tucks and 1 said a major one.....

Doctor Answers 8

Mini Tummy Tuck or Liposuction

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Unless you have some significant muscle relaxation it would appear from the photo that you would primarily be a liposuction candidate. I see very little in the way of skin relaxation. If you need some muscle tightening then a 'mini abdominoplasty approach would allow access to tighten the muscles and liposuction could be used to reduce the volume of the abdominal fat. Best of Luck  Dr Harrell

Mini/Full Tummy Tuck or Liposuction

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Although it is impossible to advise you from a picture, I would like to offer another option. A full tummy tuck removes excess skin and fat and tightens the muscle. In order to avoid a vertical scar from where the belly button used to be, you need enough skin above the belly button to reach from the ribs to the pubis with your back flexed slightly. From the picture, it does not appear that you have enough. A mini-tummy tuck takes out some skin above the pubis and liposuctions the fat to reduce it. It does not tighten the muscle (though it is possible with endoscopic methods). Liposuction eliminates the skin excision and depends on good skin elasticity to keep from having loose skin. Again, from the picture, you appear to have very little excess skin and good elasticity. Liposuction may be all you need, and, if so, it is significantly less expensive and has a faster recovery with fewer risks. Make sure whomever you consult is a reputable Plastic Surgeon with significant body sculpting experience.


Robert T. Buchanan, MD
Highlands Plastic Surgeon

Few great candidates for a Mini tummy tuck

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While your picture is only in one view, you seem to be a candidate for a full or lateral tension abdominoplasty or laser liposuction. Mini abdominoplasty in the wrong candidate can just give you mini results with a scar. You should discuss this with your plastic surgeons that can properly examine and evaluate you.

Kevin Tehrani, MD, FACS
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 115 reviews

Tummy tuck

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It is difficult to determine without  examining you.  I think you should consider the differences in potential result.  A mini will never do as much as a full tummy tuck

David A. Lickstein, MD
Palm Beach Gardens Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Personal consultation needed to determine best tummy tuck option

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The plastic surgeons you have seen are in the best position to recommend which type of tummy tuck is best. Here are the factors that would be considered in deciding between a standard and a mini: Both types will remove any localized fat in the abdomen, and both types can repair muscle separation if it is neded. However, with the mini there will be no tightening of the skin above the belly button, so if there is any issue of skin laxity there then a standard tummy tuck is the way to go.

Richard Baxter, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 59 reviews

OMG, Please be careful! Diagnosis and Recommendations for Surgery CANNOT occur via the internet

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Hi there-

It is very important for you to understand that there is no way any of us on this forum will be qualified to responsibly give you recommendations regarding the procedure required for you to look your best.

The fact is that (and it is a fact) only a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon who has examined you and had a consultation with you to discuss the important details is in a position to tell you what might work and why, as well as what would not.

In addition, going about things the way you are- soliciting opinions regarding the technique from surgeons who have never met you, have a very simple understanding of your goals and situation, and who have never examined you in person- is much more likely to guarantee that you end up unhappy and possibly unsafe.

Shopping for cars and refrigerators this way may be great, but looking for a professional this way is not so smart.

Your best bet (if your goals are, in fact, to be safe and happy with how you look) is to find the very best surgeon you can (based on education, training, experience, talent and outcomes), discuss your goals with them, and then listen carefully to the recommendations they give you. 


Type of Tummy Tuck Indicated?

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Thank you for the question and picture.

Unfortunately, there is not enough information to give you good advice. It would be in your best interests to meet with a well experienced board-certified plastic surgeon  to discuss your goals and best options.

A few words of caution for patients contemplating tummy tuck surgery may be in order:  In my opinion, the mini tummy talk is an  operation that  produces very limited results and is very rarely indicated. It involves a shorter incision but does not address the majority of the abdominal wall issues present for most patients who present consultation. For example, the area of skin excised is quite small. The abdominal wall musculature is addressed below the umbilicus leaving the upper number wall potentially lax. The appearance of the umbilicus is not necessarily addressed sufficiently.
For most patients who have had pregnancies and/or weight loss a full abdominoplasty is necessary to achieve the desired results. Of course, there are downsides (including a longer scar and probably a longer recovery time) but for most patients the benefits outweigh the downsides. It is not unusual to see patients who've had mini tummy tuck  surgery present for  revisionary surgery.
It is important  for patients seeking abdominal contouring surgery to work with a well experienced board-certified plastic surgeon to obtain advice (based on good ethics and judgment) to  improve  their chances of a successful outcome and minimize the need for further surgery.

I hope this helps.

What type of tummy tuck do you need?

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There are three components to the abdomen: skin, fat, and muscle.  Each needs to be addressed and modified to obtain the best result. A full tummy tuck with movement of the belly button has the longest scar and usually the best waist. Your best bet is to see a ABMS plastic surgeon and after he examines you he can give you all your options.  Good luck.

Ralph M. Rosato, MD
Vero Beach Plastic Surgeon

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.