Hypertrophic Breast Reduction Scarring

I had a breast reduction and suffered a pretty significant wound separation. Could this potentially be the reason for hypertropic scars?

Doctor Answers 11

Delayed healing after reduction can lead to hypertrophic scars

Hypertrophic, or thick scars after breast reduction can have many causes such as age, ethnicity, presence of infection, tension during healing, delayed healing, or prolonged irritation or inflammation. An open area or wound separation can easily lead to a thickened or hypertrophic scar.

Once this process has been set in motion it can take a very long time for the scar to soften and improve, sometimes 12 to 24 months. If your surgeon feels the scar can be revised and improved, given a better environment to heal kindly, revision need not wait the one to two years and you may be better off. There is no harm in waiting however and you can also use scar massage or silicone sheeting to help speed the process.

Best of luck,


Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 36 reviews

Breast Reduction and Scarring?

Thank you for the question.

If the “hypertrophic scar” is occurring in the location of the previous wounds separation that is likely related. These scars can often be improved with scar revision surgery.

Best wishes.

Wound separation likely cause of hypertrophic scar from breast reduction

Absolutely, a wound separation is a common cause of a hypertrophic scar. Once it is healed and the overall swelling is resolved, a scar revision is likely to result in improved appearance.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 60 reviews

Hypertrophic scars with breast reduction

Absolutely, this is the cause of hypertrophic scarring.  If the wound was left to heal by secondary intention, hypertrophic scars will form.  I would provide you with a specific protocol for scar revision and improvement.

Raffy Karamanoukian, MD, FACS
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 70 reviews

Wound healing problems can lead to unsightly scars after breast reduction.

Most breast reduction scars become very acceptable over time (months).  If there has been a wound healing problem, this might not be the eventuality.  A scar revision will be required which is not a big operation but does restart the whole healing process for the area that is corrected.

Vincent N. Zubowicz, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Scarring after breast reduction


Scarring after a breast reduction surgery is typically very acceptable. The breast skin in the lower portion of the breast is very forgiving to scarring. However, if you had wound separation, the scars may be thicker than normal. In this case, it is possible that you may be candidate for a scar revision surgery that will excise this wide scar and replace it with a thinner one. 

Pat Pazmino, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 68 reviews

Breast wound scar quality

Based on your description, you won't have a fine-line scar on your breasts. You may end up with a widended scar that is fairly flat, or a thickened scar- much of this depends on your own scar biology. Scars can always be revised in the future- usually 12 months or longer after surgery.

Scar revision may be necessary

If that is the way they formed a scar revision might be in order. This is not a common issue with well closed breast reduction scars.

Best Regards.

John P. Di Saia, MD
Orange Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Wound separation causes hypertrophic scarring after breast reduction.


Wound separation and delayed healing can certainly cause thick scars after breast reduction.

We have seen this occasionally in our New York City practice, and the scars can usually be improved a lot with scar revision under local anesthesia.

George J. Beraka, MD (retired)
Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

Delayed healing and hypertrophic scars

Hypertrophic scars after breast reduction can definitely be related to delayed wound healing. Other potential causes are genetic in derivation.  With delayed healing, sometimes performing a scar revision can help.

Steven Wallach, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 22 reviews

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.