Scars After Tummy Tuck: Advice and Tips for Patients
If you’ve lost a lot of weight or given birth, you’re bound to experience a lot of loose skin around the lower abdomen. Undergoing a tummy tuck (abdominoplasty) can remove the loose skin and help smooth away stretch marks. It’s a body contouring surgery that Dr. Patricia Berbari has performed on countless patients in the Gatineau, QC area.
Tummy tuck patients often ask our team about post-surgical scarring. Let’s take a moment to consider the location of surgical incisions and offer a few tips on caring for your incision sites and scars.
Where Are Incisions Made During a Tummy Tuck?
During a traditional tummy tuck, the following incisions are typically made:
- A circular incision around the navel
- A lateral incision along the lower abdomen spanning from one hipbone to the other
- A vertical incision along the lower abdomen connecting the previous two incisions
This anchor-shaped incision technique allows plastic surgeons to revise underlying structures of the abdomen and remove loose skin.
Variations on the Traditional Tummy Tuck Technique
Sometimes fewer or less extensive incisions are necessary to achieve the body contouring results that patients seek out. Extended tummy tucks involve lateral incisions that begin at the back of the hips, while mini tummy tucks may only involve a relatively small lateral incision along the lower abdomen.
How Long Does It Take Surgery Scars to Fade?
Surgical scars can take several months to fade, and more likely years. In the first weeks after surgery, the scars will be most pronounced and visible. In the months after the tummy tuck, patients should notice their scars fully heal and begin to fade. Over the years, the fading will continue.
While surgical scars may not totally disappear, our Gatineau tummy tuck patients should know that the scars are easily concealed by many tops and one-piece bathing suits.
Tips for Surgical Scar Aftercare
When it comes to preventing serious scars after a tummy tuck, we recommend the following:
- Avoid smoking before surgery
- Continue to avoid the use of tobacco products after the surgery is completed
- Avoid strenuous physical activity after your tummy tuck
- Do not touch or scratch your incision sites or scars
- Change surgical dressings and wear surgical support garments
- Follow bathing and showering instructions closely
- Cover up incision sites from sun exposure to avoid tanning and sun damage
- Eat healthy and exercise regularly to maintain a healthy weight
- Use a good moisturizer after you bathe or shower for healthy skin
Will I Need Professional Scar Revision Therapy?
Generally, tummy tuck patients at our Gatineau cosmetic surgery centre do not require professional scar revision therapy. Proper post-op aftercare will usually help scars fade. During the consultation process, we take time to consider the potential for keloid scars and upraised scars, and how to adjust incision locations and alter surgical techniques as needed.
If patients do have issues with prominent scars after their surgery, we can discuss various methods of scar revision. Over-the-counter products can help reduce the prominence of scars. Cortisone injections and more advanced scar removal procedures can also be considered as needed.
Contact Dr. Patricia Berbari
To learn more about tummy tuck and how it can help you achieve a slimmer, trimmer frame, be sure to contact an experienced cosmetic plastic surgeon. The Centre Chirurgical De La Capitale can be reached by phone at (819) 243-7667.