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Mini Tummy Tuck vs Tummy Tuck


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by Dr. Steven Wallach

tummy tuck is a cosmetic procedure which helps to firm up your abdomen since it eliminates excess fat and skin from the middle and lower part of your abdomen. The mini tummy tuck procedure is less invasive, and it only focuses on the excessive skin in the area between your belly button and pubic bone.

Comparing the mini and full tummy tuck

While the mini tummy tuck aims at tightening the muscles in your lower abdomen, the full tummy tuck targets the separated muscles both above and below your belly button in addition to removing the excessive and loose skin from the belly area.

Your mini tummy tuck can be performed under local anesthesia, but Dr. Wallach can use general anesthesia as well. The procedure will take less than two hours and the incision will be made above your pubic bone to remove the excessive fat and to tighten the muscles and skin. This will leave a thin scar and your procedure may include liposuction as well.

The tummy tuck procedure is performed under general anesthesia and takes anywhere from one to three hours depending on the extent of your procedure. Your belly button will be separated from the tissue and abdominal wall during the tummy tuck while the underlying abdominal muscles will be pulled into a tighter position. After this, the skin flap is pulled down and any excess skin removed before being sutured in place. The incision is usually from one hipbone to the other and liposuction may be used to enhance your results.

The procedural difference – mini vs full tummy tuck

The mini tummy tuck is typically a procedure for skin excision. Liposuction will help sculpt the area some more. Sometimes the lower abdominal muscles are tightened,  and then the loose skin will be stretched down over your incision so that any excess is excised.

In addition to the muscle tightening above and below the umbilicus and removal of skin, the tummy tuck procedure can also help remove stretch marks. The belly button is separated from the skin while the muscles are tightened, and the skin flap is stretched down to the lower incision line and the excess is removed.  Liposuction may be combined with the procedure.

Suitability of the procedures

The mini tummy tuck is suitable for you if you suffer from minor sagging in the area between your belly button and pubic bone.

The tummy tuck is the right procedure for you when you have stretched skin and separated muscles. This could happen when you have lost a significant amount of weight post obesity or have undergone multiple pregnancies.

If you intend to lose more weight or get pregnant again, none of these are suitable procedures at this time for you since your results will get altered.

What are the risks of mini tummy tuck and tummy tuck?

Some of the common side effects of the mini tummy tuck include swelling, numbness, and discomfort. There may also be the risk of bleeding, infection or numbness that may persist.

The common side effects of a tummy tuck include swelling and pain as well as soreness that may last for a few weeks. Some patients may also feel tired and experience bruising and numbness. There may be complications like an infection, blood clots and bleeding under your skin flap. If you suffer from diabetes, liver, lung or heart disease or have poor circulation, then you will be at a higher risk for such complications.

What will be the recovery like?

The recovery time for the mini tummy tuck is usually from 1 to 3 weeks. It is recommended that you limit your activities during this time.

After undergoing the tummy tuck procedure, you will be required to take at least 1 to 2 weeks off from work to fully recover. Dr. Wallach recommends that you avoid any physical exercise for a period of 4 to 6 weeks post your procedure.

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