Belly Button


During and post-pregnancy, the belly button’s appearance can be altered due to an umbilical hernia or stretched skin that overhangs the belly button. The best way to correct this is to fix the cause of the problem: either repairing the hernia or removing loose skin with a tummy tuck or mini-tummy tuck. There are times when a small skin excision can make a significant improvement to the appearance of the belly button.

The most obvious sign that someone has had a tummy tuck is an unattractive belly button. The importance of a nice belly button is often overlooked. The primary goal in tummy tuck surgery is to create a beautiful and natural looking result; such that it would allow someone to walk along a beach in a bikini without a stranger knowing they had surgery. This requires a low scar that hides under the bikini and a natural looking belly button with discrete scars. An ideal belly button is not too large or too small, has a natural flow into it from below, has slight hooding on the top portion and is oval in shape. It takes additional time in surgery to create this, but it is one of the most important considerations.

Service Video

How an umbilicoplasty is performed really depends on the reason for the surgery. Hernia repairs are not considered a cosmetic procedure and are usually done by a general surgeon; typically under general anaesthesia. They make an incision next to the belly button and cut the base of the belly button where it connects to the muscle layer. They then push the contents back into the belly and repair it with sutures or a mesh. This usually makes the appearance look much nicer, but the main goal is to prevent that protruding tissue from becoming entrapped and losing blood supply. What is important for people to understand is that this procedure will alter the plastic surgeon’s abdominoplasty technique.

For most other umbilical procedures, they can simply be done under local anaesthetic, with the plastic surgeon correcting things as needed. Some stitches will be used, which will be removed in about a week.

Dr Shortt will go over your options, so you feel that your surgery is specifically planned for you.

When to consider having this procedure?

In general, candidates for an umbilicoplasty surgery are aged 18 – 70 years, are in good health and are able to have general anaesthetic, their weight has been stable for several months post-pregnancy or significant weight loss, and may have one or more of the following characteristics:


the belly button’s appearance has been altered due to an umbilical hernia


a desire for a cosmetic revision to make a tummy tuck look more natural


unhappy with the appearance of their belly button post-pregnancy


stretched skin that overhangs the belly button, giving it a widened and deeper appearance


scarring or distortion such as piercings, laparoscopic surgery, or other surgery resulting in the distortion or even loss of the belly button. In the latter case a belly button can be recreated.

What is the recovery time?

Any time you operate, there are risks of bleeding, infection, and poor wound healing. Specific to the belly button, there could be a recurrence of the problem (especially the hernia), a thickened scar, or a scar that contracts causing the belly button to become too small.

Hernia repairs improve cosmetic appearance, but also minimize the risk that the tissue which was protruding loses its blood supply, which would necessitate urgent surgery. For all other procedures, the main benefit is cosmetic enhancement.

For most other umbilical procedures, aside from hernia repair, they can simply be done under local anaesthetic, with the plastic surgeon correcting things as needed. Some stitches will be used, which will be removed in about a week.

As with any surgery under general anaesthetic, there are potential risks or complications to consider. During your private consultation, Dr Shortt will take a thorough medical history from you, discuss your surgical options, explain the complete procedure and potential risks, discuss what to expect pre and post surgery, and your estimated recovery time.

Learn more about Belly Button Surgery in Dr Shortt’s Blog

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Dr Shortt is talented, trustworthy, and kind – he deserves more than 5 stars!

Dr Shortt was has been incredible! I went to him in search of options for correctly my breast asymmetry. I read a lot of reviews for plastic surgeons in and around Toronto and I chose Dr Shortt because his reviews were overwhelmingly positive. Initially, I was interested in fat grafting because I feared an implant would be obvious. At my consultation, Dr Shortt explained the advantages and disadvantages of both options. His opinion was that an implant would actually be the better choice because breast augmentation with an implant is much more predictable and due to the difference in my breasts, I would probably need multiple sessions of fat grafting, which would get quite expensive. After the consultation, I understood why an implant would be the better choice for me and my body. He wrote a letter on my behalf advocating that my surgery be covered by OHIP, the Ontario Health Insurance Plan, and they agreed to cover it! I really appreciated that Dr Shortt was honest about what he thought would make me the most happy (an implant in one side), not what would make him the most money (multiple sessions of fat grafting). Throughout the whole process, he was patient, understanding, and confident. His sense of humour put me at ease on surgery day and I couldn’t be happier with the results of my surgery. I didn’t want bigger breasts, just more symmetrical ones and he managed to balance me out beautifully without even touching my bigger left breast. My surgery was three weeks ago and except for the scar (which is healing beautifully) you can’t even tell I had surgery. My new breast looks and feels great and I can’t stop buying pretty new bras now that any bra will work for me. I can’t wait for bikini season! Dr Shortt is talented, trustworthy, and kind. As soon as you meet him, you’ll see that he truly cares about your happiness. Thank you, Dr Shortt!

Amazing experience

Dr. Shortt was very easy to talk to, he made me feel comfortable about having the breast reconstruction. I had a breast removed on May 25,2015 due to cancer. One of the cancer doctors in the Hamilton Cancer Center recommended Dr. Shortt. This was a great turning point in my life. I could not begin to tell you how great this experience was. He is so down to earth, kept me calm in talking about the surgery. If I had to tell another person dealing with breast cancer and having to have it removed, to see Dr. Shortt. This was a very traumatic experience to go through but this doctor made it easier to deal with the operation.

I highly recommend Dr Shortt if you are considering any surgery.

From his front office staff (Joanne) to his OR staff and Dr. Shortt himself, all made my experience a good one. I highly recommend Dr Shortt if you are considering any surgery.

I am very grateful to Dr. Shortt for his skills which have made me feel and look whole again.

I was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2015, facing the necessity for a mastectomy and frightened of the unknown that lay ahead of me. I quickly researched the various breast reconstruction options including flap reconstruction and which plastic surgeons were skilled in this microsurgery procedure. I was EXTREMELY fortunately to learn about Dr. Shortt.
My reconstruction was a multi-step process over 2.5 years and during each consultation, surgery and post-op appointment, Dr. Shortt and his staff (Kristen, Joanne) were professional, compassionate and attentive to my questions.
I am very grateful to Dr. Shortt for his skills which have made me feel and look whole again. Thank you Dr. Shortt!

I recently had a face lift with Dr. Shortt and i am extremely happy with the results.

I recently had a face lift with Dr. Shortt and i am extremely happy with the results.
When I first met Dr. Shortt I was very impressed that he was such a caring and conscientious medical professional. From the moment you step in his office you feel at ease. He asked what my goals were, took time to explain various options open to me as well as the procedure itself.
Most important was the time he took to answer all my questions and concerns. I was so impressed, I booked my surgery before leaving that day and I am so glad I did.
From the first initial consult to the post-operative appointments, he has been there with me all the way with his compassion and caring manner.
I highly recommend Dr. Shortt. Thank you so much Dr. Shortt!

I am soo happy to have found Dr shortt..I feel so lucky

I am soo happy to have found Dr shortt..I feel soo lucky to have followed my gutt feeling and chose Dr shortt as my surgeon..I was between Dr shortt and another Hollywood Dr in the states..after having a skyp call with both of them..I felt instant comfort with Dr shortt.. he explained everything about the procedure ( the tummy thigh and breast lift) and really took time answering all my questions and concerns…I got very nervous as the day got closer.. but as soon as I saw him in person( I forgot to mention that I flew all the way from Dubai to Toronto for this and boy am I glad) as soon as I saw him in person I felt that sense of comfort I had during my skyp calls ..
Do now let me tell you about my recovery..I had the surgery and got discharged same day.. my breast lift was a piece of cake. I did feel nothing but a sense of discomfort to say the most.. however it was okaaay, controlable with meds..I walked immediately as per Dr shortt recommendation.. but I stayed home for the first 5 days because my meds were making me drowsy .. for the next 5 days .. off meds by now(i chose to do so because I got bored and s wanted to get out) it was torture I couldn’t walk more than an hour in the mall or so and it was very painful getting out of bed.. after 10 days it got soo much better .. at 15 days I was perfectly fine.

Nowabout my results..I am one month in and soo thrilled of the outcomes..I was soo ecstatic .. of my new set of knockers I was showing them to all my girlfriends.. they could not believe that I didn’t have implants in .. they were asking me to touch them to make sure and asked me are you sure Dr didn’t insert any kind of support ????????.. because there too perky with beautiful shape..Dr shortt not only does a lift.. apparently during the procedure.. somehow he shapes the fat as well to create fullness in the right more lifted breasts.. and i have to say i have heavy breasts i am 32DD so that was a phenomenal thing to achieve.. the scars are amazing almost invisible now.
About my tummy tuck..I have to say i am a fit person I exercise alot and I have strong abs and mainly wanted the tummy tuck for the muscle repairs.. mine were strong but a bit separated and you can only do soo much with working out.. my stomach is so flat now.. it’s unbelievable. And it supposed to get even better with time and exercise ..I can’t wait to have a six pack????????
I would like to thank Dr shortt and Joanne.. his amazing secretary assistant.. she was soo nice and warm..I am soo greatful for them both.. and i will defenitly consider coming back for any cosmetic procedures in the future .. it was defenitly worth the 17 hours journey from Dubai.!!

I am very grateful for the new me!!

This experience took awhile to absorb for a few reasons. Clearly a breast cancer diagnosis is a scary reality but I am happy to say with the beautiful reconstruction surgery I went through under the care of Dr. Shortt I am now starting to feel like a beautiful person on the inside and out! I very grateful for the new me!! Sincerely
M. Dohan

Feel and look better than ever before.