Details of a Mini Tummy Tuck Procedure

A mini tummy tuck involves tightening the tissue on the lower abdomen below the belly button. It is suitable for those who have loose skin and possibly excess fatty tissue below the abdomen but a normal contour of the upper abdomen.  A mini tummy tuck is also an effective way to get rid of excess skin above a c-section scar. This operation is often combined with liposuction of the abdomen and/or love handles.


The majority of patients seeking mini tummy tuck surgery (lower abdominoplasty) are healthy and physically active but nonetheless have excess skin on the lower abdomen. This is a particularly common problem for females after childbirth.

During your consultation, Dr. Andrade will ask about your specific abdominal concerns, including any past abdominal surgery. The physical examination is very important and will include examining your abdomen for overall skin quality and the amount of excess adipose tissue, location of pre-existing scars, hernias and loose abdominal muscles. Photos will be taken so the preoperative and postoperative appearance can be compared.

Day of Surgery

The majority of clients wish to have their surgery at Dr. Andrade’s private surgical facility, and go home the same day. The operation takes about 2 hours and total time spent in the clinic is 4-5 hours.

The majority of people return to work one week later, but Dr. Andrade recommends only light activities for at least 4 weeks postoperatively. An abdominal binder is worn for 3 weeks to aid in wound healing, but drains are rarely used.

Postoperative Recovery

Patients are up walking within several hours after surgery, with the abdomen flexed slightly to take tension off the incision. The following day patients may perform their own activities of daily living.  Most patients are candidates for a “drainless tummy tuck” but if wound drains are inserted, they are usually removed within 3-5 days after surgery.  Wound drainage can remain elevated in some patients for a longer period, especially if they are too active following the operation.  A stretchy compression garment called a “binder” is worn on the abdomen for 3 weeks, to decrease fluid accumulation and swelling. Heavy lifting or vigorous exercise involving the abdominal muscles for should be avoided for at least 4 weeks following surgery. A scar reduction program will be recommended by Dr. Andrade.

Benefits and Risks

The majority of patients are very satisfied with the appearance of their abdomen following mini tummy tuck surgery. While good results are usually achieved and complications are uncommon, it is important to understand the risks associated with surgery. Potential problems in the immediate postoperative period include but are not limited to bleeding and blood transfusion, fluid collections requiring drainage (seroma), infection, wound healing problems, and loss (necrosis) of the abdominal skin. Long-term problems include chronic pain or numbness, contour irregularities or prominent scars. Rarely, life-threatening complications can arise during or after any operation. Dr. Andrade will discuss your specific risks and answer all of your questions during the consultation.  This information is intended to complement the advice of a plastic surgeon obtained during a proper consultation, and it is by no means exhaustive or complete.

Some advantages of a mini tummy tuck compared to a full tummy tuck include:

  • Quicker operation, often faster recovery
  • Muscle tightening usually not performed, so less discomfort
  • Lower risk of bleeding or fluid collection (seroma)
  • Often shorter scar
  • Lower cost
  • Usually an outpatient procedure

Disadvantages of a mini tummy tuck compared to a full abdominoplasty include:

  • Skin above the belly button not tightened
  • Belly button shape may not be improved
  • Full rectus diastasis repair not performed

Tummy Tuck Surgery

Full and Mini TT

"Yorkville of the North"™

Conveniently located off highway 404 in Newmarket Ontario, The York Plastic Surgery Centre is a cosmetic surgical to facility that meets CPSO regulatory standards of safety, technology and patient care. Dr. Andrade is a trusted member of the healthcare community. Also, all of the medical staff that work at the facility include board certified anaesthesiologists and fully credentialed OR nurses.

Operations performed at the facility are done on an out-patient basis with in home nursing care as needed. Patients requiring more complex surgeries stay overnight at the hospital.

The entire staff  at The York Plastic Surgery Centre work hard to make every patient feel welcome, comfortable and well informed.

Disclaimer: Images and videos on this page are models.  See Dr. Andrade's photo gallery for hundreds of actual patient outcomes.  It is not possible to guarantee a specific result because outcomes vary from patient to patient.

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