Day 19 after a tummy tuck. Is this Necrosis? What can I do? (photos)

I am at day 19 after a tummy tuck. I noticed the black areas are getting larger. My PS said to continue to add Polysporin to it. I am very concerned. I have no pain. I have been back at work for a week (desk job). I am eating well, drinking lots of water and moving around at least every hour. I take Advil only. Is this Necrosis? Should I be concerned? Is there anything else I can do for it? Thank you.

Doctor Answers 7

It is necrosis but you will be ok

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Hi,Yes, the black area looks like non-viable (necrotic) tissue. This area is the farthest from the blood supply and tends to be tight, leading to impaired blood flow and necrosis. For as scary as it can be to have a wound like this, you'll be amazed how well it will ultimately heal. For now, follow your surgeon's wound care instructions, which will  include keeping it clean, and perhaps a debridement dressing like wet-to-dry dressings. If you surgeon takes this route and lets the wound heal in, it might be acceptable, or you might need a minor scar revision down the road when the tissue softens, Alternatively, she/he might take you back to the operating room to clean it up surgically and close it. Either are good techniques. Eat well, avoid first and second-hand cigarette smoke, and plan on many visits to your surgeon. In my experience, when patients take charge of their wounds, they tend to become experts and do a great job getthing through it. Let us know how you do.Sincerely,Dr. Weintraub

Dr Derby

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Thank you for your question and the photo. The black area looks like necrosis , your sugeon will need to see it asap to make sure that you have correct wound healing and avoid further problems. Best of luck

Derby Sang Caputo, MD
Dominican Republic Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 99 reviews

Ia this necrosis?

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Hi mkj,  Yes, there is a bit of necrosis at the black area. You probably are going to need a bit of debridement of the wound and some further wound care, other than polysporin ointment.Take it easy with your activities, go back to see your plastic surgeon and discuss next steps.Best,Dr. Christine Rodgers

Is this necrosis?

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Your picture demonstrates necrosis along your incision.  The central lower incision is the most common area for this to happen because the tension is the greatest and the blood flow is generally the poorest in that area.  Unfortunately you will need debridement of the necrotic tissue and wound care will be necessary until the area heals.  Best wishes!

Erik Miles, MD, FACS
Charlotte Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 36 reviews

Tummy Tuck - Necrosis - what to do?

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Thank you for your question and photo.  I am sorry that you have suffered  from a small amount of skin necrosis along the inferior edge of your incision.  This is not an uncommon problem that is seen more commonly in diabetics, smokers, moderate to severe obesity, concomitant liposuction, and tension.You chose a board certified Plastic Surgeon whom you trusted to operate on you.  Let he/her help get you through this problem with local wound care, antibiotic cream, debridement, and time.  Many times you will not even need a scar revision.  

Richard Greco, MD
Savannah Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

TT necrosis

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Thank you for your question. Based on the picture it is necrosis. I am sorry this happen to you but with good local wound care with debridement you will heal. Please follow instructions from your PS.  


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Thanks for your inquiry and sorry for your struggles, and yes that is necrosis.  If you use any nicotine, STOP immediately.  As for your wound, you need to be seeing your surgeon regularly.  The situation needs to be carefully managed, and good luck.  

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.