What Kind of Tummy Tuck Scar Should I Expect?
Many patients are worried about having a tummy tuck scar after abdominoplasty (tummy tuck surgery). However, despite the fact that scarring and scar tissue is not exactly desirable, most patients would agree that dealing with sagging excess skin is more burdensome.
Tummy tuck surgery allows you to have a flatter and smoother abdomen, tighter abdominal muscles, and, often, fewer wrinkles and stretch marks. Let’s take a look at what you can expect in terms of tummy tuck incision placement and subsequent scarring.
What Does a Tummy Tuck Scar Look Like?
Where on your abdomen tummy tuck scars are located depends on where your plastic surgeon places their tummy tuck incisions. The standard tummy tuck incision is placed laterally right above the pubic area.
This hip to hip incision can be hidden beneath most clothing items and even beneath undergarments and bathing suits as it typically sits beneath the underwear line. The length depends upon how much skin and tissue your surgeon needs to remove.
Mini Tummy Tuck Incisions
Beyond the main lower abdominal incision described above, no other incision is needed for a mini tummy tuck. This means you will only have a mini tummy tuck scar beneath the underwear line.
Full Tummy Tuck Incisions
In addition to the lower abdominal incision, a full tummy tuck requires another incision around the belly button. Full tummy tucks are the most commonly performed tummy tucks.
Extended Tummy Tuck Incisions
For an extended tummy tuck, the surgeon must remove even more loose skin from the front and sides of the abdomen. Liposuction will also typically be used to remove excess fat.
This means that the lower hip bone incision will be extended on either side and will wrap around toward the flanks. There will also be an incision around the navel.
Fleur-de-Lis Tummy Tuck Incisions
Lastly, for patients who require more tissue and loose skin to be removed (for example, after extreme weight loss), a fleur-de-lis tummy tuck will be required. This is basically a full or extended model tummy tuck with the addition of a vertical scar running from the belly button down to the lower surgical incision.
Do Tummy Tuck Scars Go Away?
While there are some laser scar removal procedures and other treatments available to reduce the appearance of tummy tuck scars, unfortunately, they will never completely disappear.
With that said, if you develop hypertrophic scars, keloid scars, or other problems during the healing process, do reach out to your surgeon. There are sometimes topical treatments or tummy tuck scar revision options that can be used to correct the formation of raised, pigmented, and highly noticeable scars.
Tips to Minimize Scarring After Abdominoplasty
Patients often want to know how to get rid of tummy tuck scar tissue and visible scars after surgery. Unfortunately, the best remedy is time. However, there are a few tips and suggestions, which may make the wound healing and scar fading process happen faster and more effectively.
#1. Don’t stray from your surgeon’s post-op instructions.
During your tummy tuck recovery, follow all of your surgeon’s guidelines.
#2. Use a silicone-based scar cream.
With your surgeon’s approval, consistently apply a silicone scar cream or silicone scar sheets.
#3. Consider scar massage.
Again with your surgeon’s approval, look into professional lymphatic massages to aid the healing process and reduce thick scar tissue.
#4. Avoid tanning or sun exposure.
UV rays from the sun and tanning beds causes hyperpigmentation, so stay covered with protective clothing and/or sunscreen.
FAQ: Tummy Tuck Scarring & Recovery
What is the bulge under the tummy tuck scar?
Ideally, there will not be a bulge under your tummy tuck scar, so if you have one, discuss this with your surgeon. It may be caused by a poorly executed surgery, being too active during recovery, carrying around excess weight, thick and uneven scar tissue, or other reasons. See tummy tuck before and after photos for examples of well-developed scars after healing.
Should a tummy tuck scar be straight?
Most plastic surgeons will try to make their scars straight, but for different reasons, tummy tuck results can vary. For example, if there is strain on certain areas of the incision during the healing process or if the underlying tissue does not heal evenly, this can sometimes cause raises or dips in the resulting scar.
What does a tummy tuck look like after 10 years?
Your scar after 10 years should look far different from your tummy tuck scar after 6 months. It should be flatter, less pigmented, and more blurred and faded with the surrounding skin.
Those with darker skin tones may notice their scars are darker than their natural skin color. Those will lighter skin tones may have almost white scars.
How much does tummy tuck cost?
The average cost of tummy tuck surgery ranges widely, so it’s best to schedule a consultation appointment when you need a price estimate. Your surgeon should be able to assess your anatomy, discuss your goals with you, and provide a rough quote for the procedure.
Contact Us Today to Request a Consultation
Tummy tuck surgery can be a worthwhile procedure for those who’ve fought hard to lose significant amounts of weight, moms who are getting a mommy makeover to get their pre pregnancy bodies back, or those who simply have poor skin laxity due to aging and genetics.
If you think a tummy tuck procedure could help you, Dr. Smita Ramanadham and her team are here to guide you. Dr. Smita is a female board certified plastic surgeon who has helped many patients achieve a more attractive profile with tummy tuck surgery.
You deserve to feel confident about the way you look. Start your tummy tuck journey today by contacting our office. We would be happy to set up a personal consultation appointment with you.