Types of Tummy Tuck

Sep 14, 2021

A tummy tuck, otherwise referred to as abdominoplasty, is a cosmetic procedure that recontours abdomen. It removes excess abdominal skin and fat as well as strengthens weakened muscles. Abdominoplasty may be performed for aesthetic reasons or in order to treat certain medical conditions such as hernia and urinary incontinence. If you have carefully considered this procedure and decided to have it, this article highlights the different types of abdominoplasty.

1. Mini Tummy Tuck

A mini tummy tuck involves less invasive procedures. It is best for individuals with a very minimal amount of excess skin and fats to be eliminated. Such patients have a well-balanced upper abdominal profile with very minimal defects on the lower abdomen. A mini tummy tuck basically focuses on the fat accumulated below the belly button. During a mini tummy tuck, the surgeon makes a small incision between the hipbones, along the bikini line, that is at least four to eight inches long. Through this incision, the surgeon is able to eliminate stubborn fats as he tightens the underlying muscles and removes excess skin. The recovery timeline takes about six weeks with the help of an abdominal binder, and a person is advised to avoid performing strenuous activities.

2. Full Tummy Tuck

A full tummy tuck is more invasive than a mini tummy tuck. It is meant to address both the lower and upper abdomen. Full tummy tuck procedures are commonly performed because the majority of people are undergoing them. It best suits a person with excessive skin and fats around their midsection to eliminate. The surgeon performs this surgery by making an incision below the belly button, basically between the hip bones to gain more access to the underlying abdominal muscles. Afterward, he may use liposuction technique to suction out all unwanted fat deposits, then cuts off excess skin, as he tightens the muscles beneath. This incision is precisely made where the scar can easily be hidden by a bikini line. Recovery takes a longer duration compared to a mini tummy tuck, and one is able to resume less strenuous activities within a few weeks.

3. Extended Tummy Tuck

An extended tummy tuck surgery is used on patients with significant amounts of fats and skin to eliminate. It is more extensive hence uses more intensive incisions. Being more invasive than a full tummy tuck, extended tummy tuck targets several areas of the body. These include the upper and lower stomach, upper and lower back, waistline, flanks, and thighs. During this procedure, the surgeon makes a horizontal incision along the bikini line, between the hip bones, which resembles that of a full tummy tuck, and another vertical incision for better removal of excess abdominal fats and skin, and for more space to tighten the muscles beneath. The liposuction technique may apply to effectively, and permanently eliminate unwanted fat deposits. Since this procedure uses a wider incision and involves several body parts, a patient is required to spend that night in the hospital under constant medical observation. Recovery takes longer than a full tummy tuck.

4. Reverse Tummy Tuck

A reverse tummy tuck technique involves the transfer of excess fats and skin from the upper abdomen into the breasts. It best suits an individual with a toned lower abdomen but has excess fats and skin on the upper abdomen. During surgery, the surgeon may either make one long incision or two tiny incisions along the bra lines. He then removes the excess fats and skin from the upper abdomen and channels them into the breast tissues for toned upper abdominal results. In most cases, reverse tummy tuck procedures are performed along with breast enhancement surgeries. The scars left behind can be covered by wearing a bra, or a swimsuit. It takes one to two weeks after surgery for one to be able to resume their normal, light duties.

5. Panniculectomy

A panniculectomy surgery basically eliminates the pannus, also known as an apron, which consists of excess skin and fatty tissues that sag over the thighs or genitals. During this procedure, the surgeon makes an incision above the genital area from hip to hip where he focuses on removing folds of sagging skins. Panniculectomy surgery does not alter the belly button’s position, nor interfere with the abdominal muscles. At some point, the surgeon may perform this procedure together with microsurgery as a way to ascertain that all vessels function normally.


Debunking the myths and getting to learn as much as possible about this cosmetic procedure is a step in the right direction. While there are several different types of a tummy tuck, all of these are designed to achieve the patient’s goals. During your initial tummy tuck consultation, your surgeon will help you make an informed procedure choice. It is also important to note that certain non-surgical options exist that may be a fit for some women.