read lots of great doctor answers here about scarring from abdominoplasty. the part i wonder about is whether any of the post-surgery scar products make a big difference. if so, what one(s) do you recommend?
Abdominoplasty Scars - Do Scar Care Products Work?
Doctor Answers 4
Getting GOOD Tummy Tuck Scars
A Tummy Tuck scar is permanent. as a result, we all want the scar to be as least noticeable as possible. However, a lot of factors go into determining if a scar will be unnoticeable or ugly and very noticeable; some of these factors are not under our control while others are under our control.
Scar factors NOT under our control -
- Ethnicity and genetics - you cannot choose your parents. If you are olive (Asian, American Indian, Mediterranean etc), dark or black skinned, you will heal vigorously which in some cases may translate into hypertrophic or even keloid scars
- some areas of the body (inside the mouth, around the rectum) heal beautifully while others (shoulder, across the jaw etc) do not. But this cannot help you since a Tummy Tuck incision needs to be placed in the low tummy and not in either of those areas.
Factors UNDER our control
-careful handling of the tissues
- closing skin under NO tension (with tummy Tucks the majority of the tension must be taken by the deep layers especially the layer called SFS) not the skin. Tension on the skin will lead to wide scars at best or wound disruption.
- avoiding outside staples.
- If outside stitches are used, they should be removed in 5 days or so. Buried dissolving inside stitches are a much better option.
- do not smoke or be in the presence of smokers
- do not go on crash diets. You body needs higher levels of protein more than before. Give it the nutrients it needs to heal
- do not expose the wound to UV light (no tanning outside or inside)
- resume exercising gradually after checking with your surgeon
- if diabetic, make sure your diabetes is kept under control.
IF all of these factors are adhered to, you should not really need scar creams. I use them, when needed, 4 weeks after surgery or longer and have no specific favorite. In my opinion silicone tape, Mederma, Vit. E and others are largely equivalent.
Scar treatment for TT
there is only one prospective, double blind, placebo controlled studied topical with demonstrated efficacy. silicone. whether in sheet or applied topical. I recommend kelocote but anything with silicone + sunblock starting at 1 week through 12 weeks. good luck.
Paper tape and sun avoidance for tummy tuck scars
I am not a fan of most skin care products or scar treatments other than paper tape to splint the wound and avoidance of sun with sunblock.
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Scar care products
At this time, your scar is still new and is more visible. It generally takes about a year for scars to mature, by which time it will most likely fade into a silvery thin line. Hyperpigmentation can make scarring more visible, and is worsened by sun exposure. You should avoid exposing your scar to the sun, particularly for the full year after your surgery. You can try silicone gel or silicone sheeting, which can help reduce the appearance of scars. Please ask your surgeon for their advice as well.
These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.