Can the navel—a feature people rarely think about—really be the key to a successful tummy tuck? Our Austin, Texas, plastic surgeons actually think about patients’ bellybuttons quite a bit when performing an abdominoplasty, or tummy tuck. That’s because if it looks out of place or misshapen, it will attract unwanted attention and spoil the overall result of the procedure.
So, how is the ideal bellybutton created during a tummy tuck? Plastic surgeons use different techniques, but they all have the same goal—making it look like it’s been there since birth and not like it’s just a circle on the abdomen.
How Is a Tummy Tuck Performed?
Women and men who get tummy tuck surgery are people who, in one way or another, have lost significant weight and have excess abdominal skin that makes them self-conscious about their appearance. Many of the tummy tuck patients at our Round Rock plastic surgery center are women who have had children and who may be combining the procedure with breast surgery as part of a Mommy Makeover.
During a tummy tuck, the surgeon stretches and removes a significant amount of abdominal skin. That results in the patient’s proportions shifting, requiring that the bellybutton be repositioned. The surgeon does this by creating a new opening for the existing umbilical stalk.
This isn’t the case for patients who get a mini tummy tuck because that procedure only addresses excess skin and fat below the bellybutton.
What Should the Bellybutton Look Like?
Creating a natural-looking bellybutton during tummy tuck surgery requires an artistic eye in addition to surgical skill. Bellybuttons that look as if they’ve always been in the same place should be oval, but not a perfect circle. They also should appear to be a narrow slit. It shouldn’t be too large or too small, and its location on the abdomen shouldn’t be too high or too low. The top of the navel should be slightly hooded, so it appears tucked in.
You can see why the technique depends on the surgeon’s artistic skills. The plastic surgeons at Synergy Plastic Surgery have demonstrated these skills over and over again throughout their careers.
A final consideration is making an incision so that the resulting scar is inverted and not visible. Patients who have “outies” can also ask their surgeons to use this opportunity to make their bellybuttons “innies,’ which most people prefer.
Evaluate a Surgeon’s Work
When you’re looking for a plastic surgeon to perform a tummy tuck, reviewing his or her before-and-after photos showing actual patients should provide you with a good idea of the type of bellybuttons they create as part of the procedure. These photos are showing off the surgeon’s best work in most cases, so it’s important to look at them.
Our board-certified plastic surgeons are body contouring specialists with extensive experience performing tummy tuck surgeries. You can contact us using the online form to request a consultation with one of them or call us at (512) 244-1439 (Austin) or (512) 244-1444 (Round Rock) to schedule an appointment.