Does this wound after abdominoplasty need help to close? (Photos)

I had abdominoplasty and breast lift 4 weeks ago. We noticed wound separation 2 weeks ago after strips came off. One side healed in those 2 weeks and the other side has shown no improvement. Not getting worse but not better at all. Can this be normal?? I have had skin cancer spots removed so I have dealt with open wound healing, but none ever took 4 weeks or more. And I will be contacting my dr just looking for opinions til I speak with him

Doctor Answers 3

Does this wound after abdominoplasty need help to close

It will close, albeit slowly. You might benefit from the edges being cleaned up and application of some topical antibiotic as well. In some cases, after it has healed, it might require a small scar revision to improve the appearance of the scar

Las Vegas Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

Wound Breakdown after Tummy Tuck is a normal risk AND will do well in the long run!

Breakdown of the abdominoplasty incision is one of the most common risks of this surgery.  The reason is that the dissection of the flap results in the blood supply being cut from 3 out of 4 sources.  The belly flap is relying on the vessels coming from above and with the hole of being made for the belly button, the blood supply may be compromised from above as well.  This is why there is this risk, now matter how well the doctor performed the surgery, it is dependent on your own blood supply.   This means that the flap must develop a blood supply in order to heal.  The new blood supply comes from  new vessel growth and enlargement of the remaining vessels.  It takes time for the new blood supply to re-establish, which is the reason the wound closure is taking longer than you have experienced from other wounds which have normal blood supply.  What this means is that once the blood supply to the area has re-established, the wound will certainly close. This takes time.   In the mean time, you need to do several things. You can help speed the process of healing by eating 1.5 times the normal amount of protein = 120 grams/day + 500mg via C three times/day.  Your doctor can decried the dead tissue on the margins of the wound each week.  You should do dressings 2x/day if you are using Silvadene Cream or 3x/day if you are using an antibiotic ointment (you Dr.' Choice) with a compress dressing several times a day which will mechanically help to deride the wound as well.  Eventually, the tissue in the bed of the wound will become red and bumpy- this is granulation tissue.  Once the granulation tissue is visible, you know that the blood supply has re-established and the wound will finally close.  Because the granulation tissue is laden with contractile elements the wound will close down on it's own.  At a year, the entire wound will have contracted so much that it may not be an issue at all. However, if it is unattractive, you can easily have the scar excised under straight local and closed and it will heal as a beautiful thin line.

Kimberley Lloyd O'Sullivan, MD
Providence Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Does this wound after abdominoplasty need help to close?

Most wound separations will heal without issue with time. The wound needs to be evaluated in person.  It is always best to ask these questions of your chosen surgeon as recommendations may be different.

Kenneth Hughes, MD

Los Angeles, CA

Kenneth B. Hughes, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 496 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.