I am 4 weeks post op and my belly button looks awful to me. Is this going to open and look like a normal belly button? (photo)

This is my before picture and now picture. I had a TT and an umbilical hernia repair. I feel like it looks the same as it did the day after surgery. This makes me so nervous. I was hoping to show off my tummy this summer but not with this bellybutton. Will this change that much?

Doctor Answers 12

Actually it looks pretty good!

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When you have a hernia and loose umbilical stalk, it is hard to get it really  small and tight- and while your post op pic looks a little swollen, it should come down. And if not, it can be revised in the office very easily. So hang in there-- you are very early and need a few more months of healing.
Good Luck.

Columbus Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 49 reviews

Belly Button at 4 Weeks

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Thank you very much for your question.

At 4 weeks, you are still very early out from surgery.  You still have quite a bit of swelling, and the scar tissue has not settled.  I would continue to see your surgeon, and follow their advice.  If after several months you aren't happy with your result, you should voice your concerns to your surgeon and see what they recommend.  Best of luck!

Daniel Krochmal, MD
Chicago General Surgeon

My belly button looks awful to me.

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The way the BB looks after a tummy tuck can be a make or break for the overall result as this is one scar that is difficult to conceal. We always suggest to those looking for a tummy tuck to review after pictures to make sure they understand how their surgeon approaches the procedure. In your instance the umbilical hernia can make the healing and the "inset" much harder as there is competition between hernia repair, and the circulation in the BB. Also with the hernia there can be a bit of fat that gets trapped within the BB and can give a swollen appearance even after the hernia is closed. For now, relax and let things heal as best they can, make your surgeon aware of what troubles you, and know that there is a "fix" if needed down the road. 

Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 44 reviews

I am 4 weeks post op and my belly button looks awful to me. Is this going to open and look like a normal belly button?

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Thank you for your question. Speak with your surgeon to discuss your concern. You are still healing, therefore there is still substantial swelling to that area. 


Martin Jugenburg, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 517 reviews

Belly Button Concerns

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Thank you for your question and photos.  While I understand your concern about the appearance of your belly button.  I would counsel you to reserve judgement for another couple of months.  Circumferential incisions and the type of procedure that you had can cause excessive and prolonged swelling that can persist for a while.  This swelling can make things look very different than they will in a few months.  The good news is that once things heal, if they do not reach the goal you were expecting, revision is straigtfoward procedure.  Best wishes on your recovery.

I am 4 weeks post op and my belly button looks awful to me. Is this going to open and look like a normal belly button?

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Thank you for your question and photographs.  I can see your concern but as you are recently out from surgery swelling may be causing the current appearance of your belly button which should improve spontaneously with time.  If your belly button does not mature into an appearance that you like, a small in-office procedure can be done to further refine it.  Best wishes!

Nelson Castillo, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 80 reviews

Belly button problems

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With an umbilical hernia repair during the time of the tummy tuck, the blood supply surrounding the stump of the umbilicus is now only coming from the bottom. Although you may be able to sneak in and close the umbilical hernia, in my experience it's impossible to put a stitch directly underneath the outie to tack it back down to the fascia to create in an innie. This may have to be done at a secondary procedure when the umbilical blood supply is more stable. Discuss with your own plastic surgeon.

Marc J. Salzman, MD, FACS
Louisville Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 58 reviews

Belly button post op

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If you are 4 weeks there may be some change but probably not a lot.I would go back to your surgeon and discuss with him exactly what you were hoping f.or

Robert Brueck, MD
Fort Myers Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 69 reviews

Worried about neoumbilicus after TT

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We provide innie belly buttons such that the umbilical incision line, termed the neoumbilicus, falls within the shadow of your bell button. Please see link below to get your free cheat sheet on "7 keys to a great tummy tuck" which will discuss your concerns in more detail.

Arian Mowlavi, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 106 reviews

Belly button

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Your belly button is one of your first scars. This is where your umbilical cord was attached to your mothers placenta and carried nutrients to you in utero and waste products away from you and back to your mother. Once the umbilical cord was cut, the stump or scar left behind is your "belly button." Scars have a poor blood supply and that is why your healing belly button looks funky or strange after your tummy tuck. It is very early after surgery and your belly button is swollen too. This will change after a few months and its appearance will continue to improve. If you go out in the sun, apply sunblock to prevent darkening or hyperpigmentation of your belly button. 

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 86 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.