Which Tummy Tuck Is Right for You?

woman drawing lines for tummy tuck on stomach

If you’ve been thinking about getting a tummy tuck in Portland, OR, and researching online forums such as RealSelf for details about the procedure, you’ve probably noticed that a lot of people ask about which tummy tuck (or abdominoplasty) is right for them. Most patients are wondering if they’re good candidates for a technique called a mini tummy tuck.

In some cases, plastic surgeons may recommend this procedure. But the majority of people considering abdominoplasty need more extensive surgery to get the desired cosmetic results. In this blog post, I’ll describe the different techniques used by our surgeons at Portland Plastic Surgery Group and explain which patients are ideal candidates for each.

Different Tummy Tuck Techniques

Our surgeons conduct physical examinations during consultations to help determine which tummy tuck approach is right for the individual patient. The extent of excess skin and whether a patient has a condition called diastasis recti—which often occurs during pregnancy when abdominal muscles separate—influence the surgical plan they create. The different types of tummy tuck techniques include:

Mini Tummy Tuck

As its name suggests, a mini tummy tuck is less invasive than a full tummy tuck, which explains why patients often ask if they can benefit from the procedure. The incisions plastic surgeons make for mini tummy tuck procedures are shorter than those used for full tummy tucks because the patients’ concerns are limited to the lower abdomen, below the belly button. They have minimal excess skin and don’t require surgery to repair abdominal muscles.

Because a mini tummy tuck involves a shorter incision and is less invasive than other tummy tuck techniques, most patients find the recovery is shorter and involves less discomfort.

Full Tummy Tuck

Most patients considering abdominoplasty need a full tummy tuck to get the results they see in before-and-after photos. Many tummy tuck patients are women who have had children and want to feel confident again wearing a swimsuit or getting undressed in front of their partners. Men and women who have lost significant weight can also benefit from a full tummy tuck, which removes excess skin and is often combined with liposuction to remove pockets of fat and create attractively contoured midsections. A full tummy tuck is also often combined with cosmetic breast surgery as part of a Mommy Makeover.

Extended Tummy Tuck

Women and men who undergo bariatric surgery or lose a massive amount of weight through lifestyle changes often get plastic surgery to remove excess skin from multiple areas of the body, including their arms and thighs, in addition to their midsections. In these cases, our surgeons may perform extended abdominoplasties. This technique is essentially the same as a tummy tuck but also includes re-contouring the hips and flanks by removing excess skin from those areas.

Whatever tummy tuck technique is right for you, your choice of plastic surgeon is the most important decision you’ll make. We have some of the best plastic surgeons not only in Portland but throughout Oregon. To get started on your journey, contact us using the online form to request a consultation or call us at (503) 292-9200 to schedule an appointment.

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