A mini tummy tuck is a type of abdominoplasty procedure for removing excess skin and fat from the lower abdomen. The extra tissue may result from either pregnancy or significant weight loss. Many patients have trouble eliminating this extra tissue without cosmetic intervention as regular diet and exercise only help in dealing with laxity or looseness of the skin to a certain degree. A mini tummy tuck creates a flatter and more youthful appearance. The mini tummy tuck incision is shorter than that of a regular tummy tuck so the scar that is produced is also shorter. Once the incision is made, the surgeon removes the extra skin and fat of the lower belly. This step can be combined with liposuction for contouring.
IDEAL CANDIDATES for a mini tummy tuck include:
On the other hand, patients who are NOT IDEAL CANDIDATES include:
A mini tummy tuck deals with minimal to moderate amounts of loose or extra tissue. Likewise, the mini version also allows for a shorter/smaller incision than a regular tummy tuck. The type of tummy tuck a patient undergoes depends on their wishes and needs. Someone who has a lot of extra tissue and looseness will often need a regular tummy tuck to get the best results.
Before making an incision and administering any general or local anesthesia, the doctor will mark the parts of the abdomen that will be treated during the surgery. Once the surgery begins, a small incision is made below the bikini line so concealing the scar under clothes is easier for the patient. The surgeon will then remove any excess skin and fat before tightening the abdominal muscle. Finally, the skin is shaped and re-draped over the abdomen. While the belly button is not directly worked on during the operation, the skin stretching and reshaping will improve its appearance.
Other Tummy Tuck Techniques
Combining Mini Tummy Tuck with Other Procedures
The cost of a mini tummy tuck depends on whether or not any other procedures are combined with the mini tummy tuck. The cost is higher if more work is done than just the mini tummy tuck. The cost can also vary due to anesthesia fees, the area of the country where the surgery is performed and any fees charged by the facility or the doctor. In general, the average cost of a mini tummy tuck is $5000-$10,000.
The RECOVERY period for a mini tummy tuck is approximately two weeks. Any pain and discomfort can be handled by pain medication. During this period, patients can return to work within 2 or 3 days but they are not allowed to do strenuous activities to avoid opening the surgical wound. In general, patients may resume vigorous activities and exercise after approximately one month.
The results of a mini tummy tuck are dramatic and are often seen right away. More changes will be seen over time as the swelling subsides and the scar fades away. Improvements will continue for six months to one year. Any scarring can normally be hidden by clothing thanks to the placement of the incision. Usually, the scarring heals nicely with the use of scar creams prescribed by the surgeon.
A mini tummy tuck is often enough to get rid of the excess fat and skin in the lower abdominal area. Follow-up procedures may be required if the patient has significant weight fluctuations or becomes pregnant again.
The main LIMITATION of a mini tummy tuck is just how much tissue can be removed. Ideal candidates have a moderate amount of extra tissue located in the lower abdomen. Anyone that has a lot of extra tissue in the lower abdomen, or has it located in other areas of the body, is better off having a traditional tummy tuck.
There are a number of RISKS involved when having a mini tummy tuck:
A mini tummy tuck is a good option for patients who have trouble removing extra tissue in their stomach area. An appointment should be made with an experienced doctor for a thorough examination. The doctor can determine if the patient is a good candidate for a mini tummy tuck or if the patient can possibly lose the extra tissue through a combination of diet and exercise. Once the patient has been selected as an appropriate candidate for the procedure, the doctor can take the necessary steps to perform a mini tummy tuck.
Written by Cosmetic Town Editorial Team - MA
Based on an exclusive interview with Beth Preminger, MD in New York, NY