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Medically Reviewed By Dr. Moraitis

An abdominoplasty, commonly known as a tummy tuck, is a popular plastic surgery procedure that improves the appearance of one’s abdominal area. Tummy tucks are frequently taken advantage of by women who have had children, as they can eliminate excess abdominal skin and help tighten muscles that have become weak. However, not everyone is a good candidate for a tummy tuck. While many men and women will benefit from this procedure, others may not be candidates for a range of reasons, from being in poor health to wanting to give birth to more children.

When to Consider a Tummy Tuck

First, to undergo a tummy tuck you need to have either excess or sagging skin in the abdominal area, abdominal muscle weakness, or both. You also need to be in good physical health. Women often seek out tummy tucks after giving birth to one or more children, as pregnancy can lead to both muscle weakness and loose skin in the abdominal area. For many women, naturally getting your body back to its pre-pregnancy shape is impossible, and a tummy tuck is the best option.

In addition to women who have given birth, both men and women who were once  overweight and have lost a lot of weight seek out tummy tucks. Drastic weight loss can lead  to excess skin and fat deposits in the abdominal area, and a tummy tuck will eliminate these issues. Especially common amongst men, those who have undergone bariatric surgery (weight loss surgery) also frequently have tummy tucks to remove excess skin. Finally, older adults may also be candidates for tummy tucks because as we age, skin in the abdominal area will naturally lose its elasticity and sag.

When Not to Get a Tummy Tuck

  • Poor Health: If you are in poor health, you may not be a candidate for a tummy tuck. Your doctor will evaluate your physical health before determining whether or not you can undergo surgery.
  • Still Losing Weight: You should not undergo a tummy tuck until you are finished losing weight, as continued weight loss can cause more excess skin. If you are still overweight, you may need to continue losing weight before becoming a candidate.
  • Future Pregnancies: If you are planning on having more children, your plastic surgeon may recommend waiting to undergo a tummy tuck because your abdominal muscles may separate and weaken again from future pregnancies.
  • Abdominal Scarring: Abdominal scarring from a previous surgery may interfere with your ability to get a tummy tuck and should be evaluated by your plastic surgeon.