Will an umbilicoplasty fix my belly-button? (Photos)

I have had an "outie" since birth. I am unsure if I have a hernia. I have had my appendix removed and have also had a c-section with my second baby. I have some loose skin which you can see in the photo in my pink shorts. Some stretch marks which are more visible if I lean forward, not so visible in good lighting when I stand tall. What is the best treatment to give me an "innie"?

Doctor Answers 10

Innie vs Outie bellybutton

The cause of an Outie bellybutton is often an umbilical hernia, or the  laxity of the underlying muscles.  Physical exam would be best to identify the cause of the Outie.  Then the solution really depends on what additional concerns you may or may not have.
If you have general concerns about the laxity of your abdomen, then combining this with a tummy tuck me be the best approach.  If the main concern is just the bellybutton, then a hernia repair alone make it to the results you're looking for.  I would visit with a board-certified plastic surgeon if you are concerned about how to improve the appearance of your belly button.

Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 37 reviews

Will an umbilicoplasty fix my belly-button?

   If you have a hernia it can be repaired at the time of the umbilicoplasty.  An innie can be obtained in this fashion.

Kenneth Hughes, MD

Los Angeles, CA

Kenneth B. Hughes, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 492 reviews

Will an umbilicoplasty fix my belly button?

Dear. MyRealSelf2014,

In my opinion, the best treatment for you to restore your “innie” would be to correct the problem that caused it. With your pregnancies your abdominal muscles (rectus abdominus) were pushed apart. This results in your umbilicus protruding. There may (or may not) be a hernia. This is important to determine. Because umbilical hernia’s carry the potential risk of intestinal damage, most insurance companies will cover the cost of umbilical hernia repair.

By making a limited incision around your umbilcus, the abdominal muscles can be brought back together and your “innie” will be restored.

I agree with Dr. Fontana’s suggestion that you find a plastic surgeon who has completed general surgery training. Some general surgeons may be able to repair a hernia, but plastic surgeons’ added training in abdominoplasty surgery increase the chance for achieving your desired outcome.

Michael Sadove MD

A. Michael Sadove, MD
Indianapolis Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

Will an umbilicoplasty fix my belly-button?

Firs step in understanding your options is an IN PERSON evaluation with a boarded surgeon in your city/state. Than you can decide if there are good options for you.. 

Darryl J. Blinski, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 173 reviews

Will an umbilicoplasty fix my belly-button?

Looking at your pictures: You have a small umblical hernia that is easily fixable. The hooding above your navel can be addressed at the same time. Best is to consult with your general surgeon.
As for your abdomen, a "Mini-tummy tuck" in my opinion will serve you best. You seem to have good muscles with good skin tone. I see more skin laxity in your lower abdomen and assume where most of the stretch marks are.
You can do both, repair of the hernia and the tummy tuck, in one sitting.

Maan Kattash, MD, FRCS, FACS
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 53 reviews

Umbilical Hernia and Tummy Tuck

As you can see, there is not an absolute answer to your question.  An outie is most frequently caused by an umbilical hernia, though not always. A quick exam could determine the cause. The treatment is dependent upon the cause. It is not infrequent that a small hernia is repaired and the outie fixes itself. This could be done with an umbilical incision and the belly button fixed with an umbilicoplasty at the same time. A more invasive approach would be a mini tummy tuck with a belly button float and umbilical hernia repair. Finally, it may be possible to do a full tummy tuck but the condition of your abdomen would make me a little hesitant to put an umbilical scar on you. Extreme attention needs to be paid in all cases to the umbilicus but even an excellent scar all of the way around the belly button after a tummy tuck is somewhat visible.  Sometimes the best surgical option is the one that keeps you looking the way you look with a minor tweak.
Dr. Pyle

Jeremy Pyle, MD
Raleigh-Durham Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 109 reviews

Belly button fix

You have a very small umbilical hernia which is causing  the  bulging appearance. It is an easy  fix. I  do not see any indication for any type of tummy tuck. You are in great shape. I  would have a PS who has  finished  general surgery  do the repair as you are more likely  to have a  good cosmetic result.

Don Fontana, MD
Waldorf Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

Outie bellybutton requires hernia repair possible tummy tuck

Thank you for your question and photograph.As others have stated we will need an umbilical hernia repair however her general surgeon should consult a plastic surgeon regarding a possible tummy tuck.  There is loose skin around the belly button and the belly button is tethering the abdominal skin not allowing it to fall downward.  Consultation  with a plastic surgeon would be necessary to see if you have enough skin  for a tummy tuck and repositioning of the belly button.

"Outie" belly button likely a hernia

The outie belly button is often a small hernia and is very common with patients who have had children and are considering a tummy tuck. A good option in many cases is a mini-abdominoplasty with an umbilical float, which would allow the belly button to be improved while using the scar you already have from the C-section and tighten the skin in the lower abdomen. A personal consultation is needed in order to give definitive advice.

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

Belly button hernia, umbilical hernia

What you have is a small umbilical hernia. This is where a small piece of fat (or sometimes intestine in larger defects) "herniate" through the abdominal wall at the stalk of the belly button. This is easily fixed by a general surgeon (and usually covered by insurance).  A small incision is made inside or around the belly button, the fat is pushed back into place and the hole is repaired either with stitches, or perhaps they may use a small piece of mesh to help re-enforce the repair. Then you will have a nice "innie" belly button. Make sure to ask the surgeon what type of scar will be used to make sure it will be as inconspicuous as possible.

Joel Patrick Maier, MD
Cincinnati Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 29 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.