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What is a Reverse Tummy Tuck?

Have you heard about the “reverse tummy tuck”? It’s a new way to fix sagging skin and extra skin in the upper belly. Unlike a regular tummy tuck, it works on the area above the belly button. This makes it a full-body reshaping option.

This surgery, also called a reverse abdominoplasty or belt lipectomy, is getting popular in plastic surgery. It’s great for people who have lost a lot of weight and now have extra skin and loose tissue above their belly button.

Key Takeaways

  • The reverse tummy tuck targets the upper abdomen, addressing excess skin and sagging above the belly button.
  • It is often recommended for patients who have loose, sagging skin in the upper abdomen but do not have significant muscle separation or excess fatty tissue in the lower abdomen.
  • The reverse tummy tuck can be a transformative body contouring option, particularly for individuals who have undergone significant weight loss.
  • This procedure offers a unique approach to reshaping the entire midsection, providing a more comprehensive solution compared to a traditional tummy tuck.
  • Patients should consult with an experienced plastic surgeon to determine if a reverse tummy tuck is the most suitable option for their individual goals and needs.

Introduction to Reverse Tummy Tuck

A reverse tummy tuck, also known as an upper abdominal lift, reshapes the upper abdomen. It’s different from a traditional tummy tuck, which focuses on the lower abdomen. This procedure targets the upper part of the belly.

Overview of the Procedure

The surgery makes an incision along the lower breast fold. This lets the surgeon lift and tighten the skin above the navel. It helps fix loose, sagging skin in the upper abdomen, making it smoother and more contoured.

Reasons for Considering a Reverse Tummy Tuck

  • Excess upper abdominal skin from weight loss, pregnancy, or aging
  • Wanting upper abdomen contouring without a full tummy tuck
  • Fixing loose upper abdominal skin without affecting the lower belly’s muscles or fat
  • Improving the overall reverse tummy tuck overview and enhancing body shape

People who had a tummy tuck or liposuction and now have extra skin above the belly button might consider this surgery.

What is a Reverse Tummy Tuck?

A reverse tummy tuck is a cosmetic surgery that focuses on the upper abdomen. It’s different from a traditional tummy tuck, which targets the lower abdomen. This surgery aims to make the upper abdomen look tighter and more toned for those without much excess skin or muscle looseness in the lower area.

Differences from Traditional Tummy Tuck

The main difference between a reverse and traditional tummy tuck is where they focus. Traditional tummy tucks work on the lower abdomen to fix skin and muscle issues. Reverse tummy tucks, on the other hand, focus on the upper abdomen. They make an incision in the lower part of the breast to lift and tighten the upper abdominal skin.

Targeting the Upper Abdomen

This surgery is made to fix issues in the upper abdomen like loose skin, extra fat, and the “muffin top” look. By pulling up the loose skin and removing extra tissue, the surgeon makes the upper abdomen look more sculpted and youthful. It’s great for people who have lost a lot of weight or have changed body shape due to aging or pregnancy.

Compared to traditional tummy tucks, reverse tummy tucks are for those with upper abdomen skin and sagging but not the lower area. This targeted method can make the midsection look more balanced and pleasing, improving its overall look.

Ideal Candidates for Reverse Tummy Tuck

Thinking about a reverse tummy tuck? It’s key to know who’s a good fit for this surgery. This surgery, also known as an upper abdominoplasty, focuses on the upper belly. It removes excess skin and fat there.

People who have lost a lot of weight or had babies often have extra skin and fat above their belly button. But, they shouldn’t have big muscle gaps or weakness below the belly button. That would need a different kind of surgery.

To be a good candidate for a reverse tummy tuck, you should:

  • Have extra skin and fat above the belly button
  • Have little to no muscle gaps or looseness below the belly button
  • Be ready to keep a healthy lifestyle after surgery
  • Be in good health and not smoke
  • Have clear expectations about what the surgery can do

Getting a check-up with a skilled plastic surgeon, like Kenneth R. Francis, MD, is crucial. They’ll look at your body and goals to see if this surgery is right for you.

Ideal Candidate CharacteristicsReverse Tummy Tuck Suitability
Excess Skin and Fat in Upper AbdomenSuitable
Minimal to No Muscle Separation in Lower AbdomenSuitable
Significant Muscle Separation or Laxity in Lower AbdomenNot Suitable
Commitment to Healthy LifestyleSuitable
Overall Good Health and Non-SmokerSuitable

Knowing who’s a good match for a reverse tummy tuck helps you decide if it’s right for you. Kenneth R. Francis, MD can give you a detailed check-up and help you make the best choice for your body.

Benefits of Reverse Tummy Tuck

A reverse tummy tuck, also known as an upper body lift, offers more than just a better-looking belly. It targets skin laxity and extra fat in the upper belly. This leads to big improvements in how the area looks and works.

Improved Skin Laxity

As we get older, our skin loses its elasticity, causing it to sag. A reverse tummy tuck can tighten and smooth the skin in the upper abdomen. This makes the area look more toned and youthful. By removing extra skin and tightening the tissue under it, the procedure greatly reduces skin laxity. This gives patients a more sculpted and defined midsection.

Reduced Appearance of Stretch Marks

The reverse tummy tuck can also reduce the look of stretch marks from pregnancy, weight changes, or other events. By taking out extra skin and tightening the belly, the procedure lessens the visibility of these marks. This boosts self-confidence and how people see their bodies.

The benefits of a reverse tummy tuck go beyond just tighter skin and fewer stretch marks. This surgery can make patients look and feel more youthful, toned, and confident. It helps them feel great in their own skin.

Reverse Tummy Tuck Procedure

The reverse tummy tuck is a surgery that removes excess skin and fat above the belly button. It’s different from a traditional tummy tuck, which focuses on the lower belly. This method is great for those who have lost a lot of weight or have loose skin in the upper belly.

Surgical Technique

The surgery starts with an incision along the lower part of the breastbone. The surgeon then removes extra skin and fat from the upper belly. The skin is pulled down and fixed with stitches, making the midsection tighter and smoother.

The surgery is done under general anesthesia and takes about 2-3 hours. After the surgery, you might feel some pain, swelling, and bruising. These can be eased with medicine and ice packs.

Anesthesia and Recovery

  1. General anesthesia is used for the surgery.
  2. A compression garment is worn after surgery to help with healing.
  3. It usually takes 4-6 weeks to get back to normal activities. Avoid hard exercise and heavy lifting for at least 4-6 weeks.
Surgical TechniqueAnesthesiaRecovery
Incision along the lower breastbone, removal of excess skin and fat from the upper abdomen, skin pulled down and suturedGeneral anesthesiaCompression garment, return to normal activities within 4-6 weeks, no strenuous exercise or heavy lifting for at least 4-6 weeks

Knowing about the reverse tummy tuck’s surgery, anesthesia, and recovery helps patients decide if it’s right for them. Always talk to a board-certified plastic surgeon to discuss your goals and what to expect.

Combining with Other Procedures

A reverse tummy tuck can be combined with other cosmetic procedures for a full body makeover. Many people pair it with a breast lift or breast reduction for the upper body. Others add liposuction to the mix for the abdomen.

Breast Lift or Reduction

For a balanced look, a reverse tummy tuck with a breast lift or reduction works well. The tummy tuck tightens the upper abdomen. A breast lift or reduction fixes sagging breasts. Together, they create a youthful, even look from chest to waist.


Adding liposuction to a reverse tummy tuck improves the look. It removes fat in the abdomen. This makes the midsection look more sculpted, matching the skin tightening from the tummy tuck.

Combining a reverse tummy tuck with other procedures tackles many areas at once. It’s important to work with a skilled surgeon like Dr. Kenneth R. Francis. They can tailor a plan to meet your goals.

Reverse Tummy Tuck Recovery

Recovering from a reverse tummy tuck takes about 1 to 2 weeks. Patients will see some bruising, swelling, and tenderness. A surgical bandage or garment is worn for several days to support the new shape.

Post-Operative Instructions

After the surgery, patients get detailed instructions from their surgeon. These include:

  • Wearing a compression garment or surgical bandage to support the abdomen
  • Taking pain medication as needed to manage discomfort
  • Applying ice packs to the treated area to reduce swelling
  • Avoiding strenuous physical activity for the first 6 weeks of recovery
  • Attending follow-up appointments with the surgeon to monitor healing progress

Returning to Normal Activities

After 1-2 weeks, most people feel good enough to go back to work. But, they should avoid jobs that need heavy lifting or hard physical work. It’s best to skip intense exercise and activities that could strain the stomach for about 6 weeks.

This helps the body heal right and lowers the chance of problems. Your surgeon will tell you when it’s safe to go back to your usual activities and workouts.

Potential Risks and Complications

A reverse tummy tuck can greatly improve your look, but it’s key to know the risks and complications. Like any surgery, it comes with some downsides that patients should think about before deciding. It’s important to weigh these carefully.

One big risk is bleeding. If there’s too much bleeding during or after surgery, it can cause problems. You might need more medical help. Infections are also a worry. To avoid infection, it’s crucial to follow the doctor’s instructions before and after surgery.

Another issue is seroma, or fluid buildup. This can be painful and might need extra care. You could also end up with asymmetrical results, meaning your abdomen might not look even.

  • Bleeding
  • Infection
  • Seroma (fluid buildup)
  • Asymmetrical results

Other side effects include hematoma (blood under the skin), bruising, and scarring. These issues are common with surgery but can be lessened by picking a skilled plastic surgeon and following all instructions.

Potential Risks and ComplicationsDescription
BleedingExcessive bleeding during or after the surgery can lead to complications and may require additional medical intervention.
InfectionPatients must diligently follow pre- and post-operative instructions to minimize the risk of infection.
SeromaFluid buildup that can cause discomfort and may necessitate additional drainage procedures.
Asymmetrical resultsThe appearance of the abdomen may not be perfectly balanced.
HematomaA collection of blood under the skin.
BruisingDiscoloration of the skin due to the surgical procedure.
ScarringVisible marks left by the surgical incisions.

Knowing about the risks of reverse tummy tuck, complications of reverse tummy tuck, and potential side effects of reverse tummy tuck helps patients make a smart choice. It’s key to work with a skilled plastic surgeon to lessen these risks and get the look you want.

Choosing the Right Surgeon

Finding a skilled plastic surgeon is key to a successful reverse tummy tuck. When picking a surgeon, look for one who is board-certified and has lots of experience with this surgery.

Qualifications and Experience

A surgeon should be board-certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery. This means they’ve passed tough training and checks to give top-notch care. It’s also important to check their experience with reverse tummy tucks. This surgery needs special skills and techniques.

Consultation and Communication

In the first meeting, the surgeon will check what you need and talk about the surgery plan. They’ll make sure you know what to expect. Good communication is key for a smooth surgery and recovery. You should feel okay asking questions and sharing your goals.

Choosing an experienced, board-certified plastic surgeon and talking openly during your consultation helps you pick the right one for your surgery.

Preparing for Reverse Tummy Tuck Surgery

If you’re thinking about a reverse tummy tuck, getting ready is key. Follow your surgeon’s advice to make sure your recovery goes well. Here’s what you need to do before your surgery.

Quit Smoking

Smoking can slow down healing and raise the risk of problems after surgery. Your doctor will tell you to stop smoking weeks or even months before your surgery. This helps your body heal better.

Maintain a Healthy Lifestyle

Keep eating well and exercising before your surgery. This keeps you at a stable weight, which is important for good results and healing.

Arrange for Help During Recovery

Recovering from a reverse tummy tuck takes weeks, and you’ll need help with everyday tasks. Find someone to take care of childcare, grocery shopping, and light housework for you while you recover.

Follow Pre-Operative Instructions

Your surgeon will give you specific instructions before your surgery. This might mean avoiding certain medicines or following certain diets. Always follow these carefully for the best results.

By getting ready for your surgery, you can make sure it goes smoothly. Always talk to your surgeon for personalized advice and support.

Cost and Financing Options

Thinking about a reverse tummy tuck? The cost is a big concern for many. The price varies based on the surgeon’s skill, location, and the procedure’s complexity. Let’s look at the how much does a reverse tummy tuck cost and financing options for reverse tummy tuck.

The cost of a reverse tummy tuck can be quite wide, from $8,000 to $15,000 in the U.S. The price can change due to:

  • The surgeon’s expertise and credentials
  • The procedure’s complexity
  • The location of the surgery
  • Costs for anesthesia and other medical services

Even though the reverse tummy tuck cost might seem high, there are ways to make it easier. Many surgeons offer financing plans that let you pay in monthly bits. You can also look into medical loans or financing companies for more flexible options.

Remember, the reverse tummy tuck cost is just one thing to think about. It’s more important to choose a skilled surgeon for the best results. A board-certified plastic surgeon with lots of experience in reverse tummy tucks will give you the best outcome.

To get a clear idea of the reverse tummy tuck cost and financing, talk to a trusted plastic surgeon. They can give you a detailed cost breakdown and help with financing. This way, you can make your dream of a firmer midsection come true.

Maintaining Results After Reverse Tummy Tuck

Getting a reverse tummy tuck is a big step towards feeling confident again and getting the body shape you want. But, keeping up with the results takes a commitment to a healthy way of living. By eating right, exercising, and making lifestyle changes, you can keep your reverse tummy tuck looking great.

Diet and Exercise

Eating well and staying active are key to keeping your reverse tummy tuck looking good. Eating foods high in lean protein, fruits, veggies, and whole grains helps you stay at a healthy weight. This keeps your surgery results looking their best.

  • Focus on a diet full of nutrient-rich foods and cut down on processed and high-calorie foods.
  • Do regular exercise like cardio and strength training to make your abs tighter.
  • Work with your healthcare team to create a diet and exercise plan that fits your needs and goals.

Lifestyle Changes

Along with a healthy diet and exercise, making some lifestyle changes can help keep your reverse tummy tuck looking good. Quitting smoking, managing stress, and keeping good posture are all important.

  1. Quit Smoking: Smoking can slow down healing and increase risks, so quitting before and after surgery is key.
  2. Manage Stress: Too much stress can cause weight changes and harm your health. Try stress-reducing activities like meditation, yoga, or counseling.
  3. Maintain Good Posture: Standing up straight helps prevent new bulges and keeps your abs looking tight.

By focusing on a healthy lifestyle with a balanced diet, regular exercise, and positive changes, you can keep your reverse tummy tuck results looking great. Enjoy your new look for many years.


The reverse tummy tuck is a great way to improve your upper abdomen’s look. It removes extra skin and tightens the area above the belly button. This makes you look younger and more toned.

It’s perfect for people with loose, sagging skin. Choosing a skilled, board-certified plastic surgeon like Dr. Kenneth R. Francis is key for the best results.

Thinking about fixing your upper abdomen? The reverse tummy tuck is a good choice. With a healthy lifestyle and your surgeon’s help, you can keep looking great for years.

This surgery is a smart pick for those wanting a better upper midsection look. It’s both versatile and effective.

Deciding on a reverse tummy tuck is up to you. Dr. Francis will help you every step of the way. With his knowledge and your commitment, you can get the beautiful look you want.

The information provided on this website is intended for general informational purposes only and is not intended as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. The content of this website should not be used for the purpose of medical diagnosis or treatment. Readers are advised to consult with Kenneth R. Francis, MD

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