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Mini, Fleur-de-Lis, or Extended Tummy Tuck: Which Is Right for You?

Doctor drawing angles on a woman's abdomen (models)

If you’ve lost significant weight, given birth, or simply want to improve your body contour, tummy tuck surgery can help you achieve a tighter, trimmer, and more defined midsection. It’s not a one-size-fits-all procedure, though. Tummy tuck surgery techniques are customized to address your specific concerns, whether it’s just a small tummy pooch or a large amount of excess abdominal skin.

This blog post will provide you with the information you need to know about tummy tucks, including who’s a good candidate, surgical techniques, and the approximate cost.

What Is a Tummy Tuck?

A tummy tuck is a surgical procedure that removes excess skin and fat from the abdomen, tightens the abdominal muscles, and repositions the bellybutton to achieve a firmer and more toned midsection.

Who’s a Good Candidate for a Tummy Tuck?

Tummy tuck surgery is suitable for men and women with excess skin and fat in the abdomen, weakened abdominal muscles, and a desire to improve their body contour. Good candidates for tummy tuck surgery include:

  • People who’ve lost significant weight and have excess skin and fat in the abdomen.
  • Women who’ve given birth and have separated abdominal muscles and excess skin in the abdomen.
  • People who have a protruding abdomen due to genetics or aging.

Tummy Tuck Surgery Techniques

The type of tummy tuck surgery technique used will depend on your specific needs and goals, including how much excess skin and fat you have and where it’s located. During your consultation, your plastic surgeon will evaluate your abdominal area, discuss your desired outcome, and recommend the best technique for you.

These are the 4 surgical techniques used in our practice:

Traditional tummy tuck. Also called a full tummy tuck, this technique involves making a horizontal incision between the hip bones, removing excess skin and fat, and tightening the abdominal muscles. This procedure improves the appearance of the entire abdomen and addresses stretched or separated abdominal muscles.

Mini tummy tuck. During a mini tummy tuck, the surgeon makes a shorter incision than with a full tummy tuck, removing a smaller amount of skin and fat. It addresses laxity below the bellybutton only and does not include tightening the abdominal muscles.

Extended tummy tuck. Also known as a belt lipectomy, this technique is ideal for patients with excess skin and fat in the lower back and hips. It involves making an incision that extends around the waist, like a belt, and removing excess skin and fat from the entire midsection.

Fleur-de-lis tummy tuck. The fleur-de-lis technique is effective for people who have lost significant weight (whether through bariatric surgery or another method) and have a great deal of excess skin. This approach extends the full tummy tuck by making a vertical incision from the pubic area to the chest, allowing the surgeon to tighten the waistline and hips as well as the abdomen. It’s a highly effective technique for removing a substantial amount of excess skin and improving body contour.

Before & After Fleur-De-Lis Tummy Tuck
Before & After Fleur-De-Lis Tummy Tuck
Before & After Fleur-De-Lis Tummy Tuck

Check out more of our actual patients’ tummy tuck results in our before-and-after gallery.

What Is Recovery Like?

A mini tummy tuck may require less downtime than a full tummy tuck, and extended and fleur-de-lis tummy tucks may require more recovery time than a traditional abdominoplasty. However, you can generally expect a recovery period of around 2 to 3 weeks, during which you may experience moderate pain, fatigue, soreness, and swelling in your midsection. You should take time off work and organize help for household chores and child care. Depending on the extent of your surgery, you should postpone strenuous physical activity for 4 to 6 weeks following the surgery.

What Does a Tummy Tuck Cost?

A tummy tuck at our practice costs around $12,000 to $14,000, depending on several factors, including the technique used. During your consultation, you’ll receive a written quote after discussing all the details of your procedure. Financing options are available for qualified patients.

If you’re considering tummy tuck surgery and want to speak with a board-certified plastic surgeon about your options, call our office today at (512) 244-1439 or request a consultation.

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