Different Types of Tummy Tuck

Tummy tuck is a common cosmetic procedure that is designed to remove excess skin and fat from the abdominal area to achieve a smoother and firmer contour. Plastic surgeons also strengthens weakened abdominal muscles as part of this treatment. Depending on the appearance of your abdomen, there are several different types of abdominoplasty to choose from. 

1. Mini Tummy Tuck

A mini tummy tuck only addresses the area below the belly button. It is a less invasive procedure that is typically recommended for patients who have a stubborn pooch of excess fat in the lower abdomen (that won’t respond to diet or exercise). The plastic surgeon creates a small incision between the hip bones and uses it to remove excess fat and skin, after which they may tighten the underlying abdominal muscles. Post-surgery, a small scar is left behind because of the small incisions. A mini tummy tuck does not displace the belly button and does not touch the upper abdominal area. Recovery after this treatment takes about a week. 

2. Traditional Tummy Tuck

A traditional tummy tuck is also referred to as a full or standard tummy tuck. It reconstructs both the upper and lower abdomen areas. Plastic surgeons create two incisions: one around the navel, and the second one in the lower abdomen just above the pubic line. A traditional tummy tuck is advantageous to women whose abdomen got damaged either due to pregnancy or after experiencing a rapid weight loss. It eliminates the excess sagging skin and tightens the abdominal muscles. This abdominoplasty technique leaves a scar extending from the belly to the top-back of the buttocks. Depending on the goals of your treatment, a full tummy tuck may be combined with liposuction or other cosmetic procedures. The recovery duration following this treatment is about two weeks but varies from one individual to the other. 

3. Non-Surgical Tummy Tuck

Non-surgical tummy tucks are reserved for patients with a tiny pooch. This means that they have very little skin to eliminate. It is done through a lifting effect and can last for a very long time particularly when supported with exercise and a healthy diet. Non-surgical tummy tuck procedures can be attractive to patients who are reluctant to have invasive abdominoplasty surgery due to scarring or the risk of complications. Keep in mind though that this cosmetic treatment is not suited for patients with excess hanging skin and fat, or who have undergone massive weight loss. 

4. Extended Tummy Tuck

An extended tummy tuck is a procedure used to eliminate large amounts of fat and sagging skin. It is usually performed along with liposuction in order to attain amazing results. An extended tummy tuck addresses the upper and lower abdomen, hips, and flanks. The surgeon makes longer incisions compared to traditional tummy tuck in order to reach the deepest fat deposits. These incisions stretch out around the hips and across the lower abdomen which leaves a scar that takes a longer period to heal. An extended abdominoplasty will also reposition the belly button. A longer recovery period is involved but the duration varies from one patient to the other. 

5. Reverse Tummy Tuck

Reverse Tummy tuck addresses the upper abdomen area and does not involve tightening of any muscles. The plastic surgeon will create one long incision or two small incisions beneath the breasts. The excess fat and skin in the upper abdomen are removed and channeled upwards to the breasts. The scar left behind can be covered with a bra or a bathing suit. A reverse tummy tuck may sometimes be used as an alternative to breast augmentation.

6. Panniculectomy

Panniculectomy is a non-cosmetic surgery that involves the removal of the pannus along with unwanted fat, skin, and tissue from the lower abdomen. This treatment does not entail any type of muscle tightening. Plastic surgeons create two incisions, one vertically extending down to the pubic bone, and the other horizontally between the hip bones. Qualified patients to undergo this surgery should be non-smokers, have excess abdominal fat, and be generally healthy. 

7. Vertical Tummy Tuck

A vertical tummy tuck is also known as Fleur De Lis in French. It is a surgical procedure that involves the removal of excess skin and tissue from the lower and upper abdomen. This surgery is designed for individuals who experience a sensible weight loss and have sagging skin on the lower abdomen and on the sides. It is done through two incisions: one along the pubic bone and another one vertically along the abdominal center.


Tummy tucks are designed to restore your midsection contour and boost your sense of self-image. Identifying the right abdominoplasty procedure for you is the first step towards achieving your desired cosmetic outcome. Make sure to work with a board-certified plastic surgeon and take the time to discuss the most appropriate abdominoplasty technique for your needs.