Puckering Scar After Abdominoplasty?

I had abdominoplasty and liposuction approximately 3 months ago. My post-operative course was complicated by a seroma, fat necrosis and, ultimately sepsis. The wound had extensive draining and tunneling which required packing and hyperbaric oxygen treatment for many weeks. The wound is now closed and the area of the wound is puckered. I realize that this can ultimately improve. If the wound does not improve, should the original surgeon correct it free of charge?

Doctor Answers 5

Policies and Timing

Even in the best hands, complications can occur. Most doctors hate complications as much as patients do and want to do everything they can to correct a problem that was a result of their surgery. If you approach your surgeon  in an non-confrontational way you should be able to work out a plan and timetable. Most cosmetic surgeons have a policy regarding revisions for complications and this often involves no charge for surgeons fees. But that doesn't necessarily mean that you nothing. You may be responsible for facility fees, anesthesia charges as well as other things like labs and prescriptions. It is always best to have a good understanding of what your responsibilities are before surgery.

One additional word on timing. After a wound problem like the one you suffers, there is significant inflammation and scar changes that take a long time to settle down. Tissues can be very stiff and difficult to work with in this early period of healing. Waiting longer is almost always better. Waiting a year from the time of complete wound healing is a typical recommendation. So be patient. Best of luck to you. 

Dallas Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 25 reviews

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Scar after abdominoplasty

Dear miss_meg,

you certainly went thru a lot !

but now the wound is closed, and you need to give time to your body to settle the scar which will go on for another 2 years after the surgery. A potential revision can be done then, if needed.

enjoy your life, and check with your surgeon that you can go back to exercising.

you should also have regular f/u visits with photo documentation of the scars. the puckering may be pronounced now, but may flatten out in the future. Massaging certainly helps, as well as using silicone gel such as Mederma.

as for the financial discussion, you will need to address that with your surgeon.

good luck,

Florence Mussat, MD

Florence Mussat, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Puckered scar after abdominoplasty

I am sorry to hear that you had all these complications after the tummy tuck.  If you are comfortable with your treating physician, revision should be subject to your preop agreement. My policy is to correct puckering, if it occurs, so long as the patient has brought it to my attention within a reasonable time, at no charge.    If your entire scar is puckered, then you may want to have a procedure in a surgicenter with anesthesia and those costs would be your responsibility.  I do want to emphasize that three months postop, given your complications, is too soon to be planning a revision.  It will take a full year for the wound to settle down.  Best of luck!

Robert L. Kraft, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 16 reviews




Your question is SHOULD he correct it? Well no one is obligated to correct anything. When having surgery and reading the consents it does mention the things that can and will happen, and necrotic tissue is one of the complications. Every PS is different, if you have a great doctor and understands and likes his patients he will do it with no surgeon cost, but the anesthesia and surgery center there is always a cost, they never give the surgeon a break on cost.  A patient would have to pay for those too to have a revision.


Stuart B. Kincaid, MD, FACS
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 9 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.