Dr Says I'm Fine but I Know It's Skin Necrosis So Now What? (photo)

Should I go to the ER? My dr says this that it is normal and I'm fine but I know that it's necrosis from reading everyone's story on this site and I know it's just getting worse by the day. I clean it once a day (which ps is now saying to clean it 3 times a day) but by reading everyone's story don't you have to take the dead skin out so it can heal and get better? I'm so confused and scared! What should I do? My ps is making me feel like he doesn't care.

Doctor Answers 8

Possible necrosis

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You might have some mild necrosis along the edge with some slight wound separation, but your surgeon is right.  You need to wait it out and it will heal on its own although it may take a few weeks.  Whatever you do, don't go to the ER. They won't know what they are looking at and will be of no help.  If you were my patient, I might put you on oral antibiotics, but for the most part you need to wait it out .  It will heal surprisingly well. Don't freak out!

San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 30 reviews

Wound healing issues

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I do not think a visit to the ER is necessary unless you are running a high fever or having a lot of drainage.   I would recommend close followup with your plastic surgeon and keeping the incision clean and dry at all times.   It is also important to minimize tension and stretch to the area, as this could widen or open the incision in this area, resulting in prolonged healing.

Paul S. Gill, MD
Houston Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 95 reviews

Tummy tuck incision issues

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Thank you for the pictures. It appears that you do have some minor tissue necrosis. Going to the ER will not be helpful. This can be address is an in-office procedure to remove the unhealthy tissue followed by local wound care to achieve healing

Dr. ES

Skin Necrosis After Tummy Tuck... So Now What? (photo)

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Relax.  This is a very small area, appears superficial, uninfected, and provided skin only is involved (and not a large chunk of fat), it will heal well.

If there is a scar you do not like, it can be revised later.  A nasty scar can result with or without this type of marginal skin loss.

My recommendation would be for hygiene (keep the area clean), protection from trauma (padding to absorb drainage and prevent friction or trauma to the wound), and close follow up with your surgeon.

You'll do fine.

Steve Laverson, MD
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 50 reviews

Skin necrosis after a tummy tuck

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You have skin necrosis which is a known complication of tummy tuck surgery.  I do not think the ER would be of any assistance.  I would see your plastic surgeon weekly and he/she will likely debride the area and this will ultimately heal.  Best of luck.

Wound breakdown after tummy tuck

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Wound breakdown can happen and may need wound care or even additional surgery. I would say you are not fine and this is not normal. I would hope your PS is seeing you every week. If you go elsewhere that is fine but it will cost you some additional dollars. ER no help probably. Best outcome is if you and your surgeon work it out!

Gregory T. Lynam, MD
Richmond Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 62 reviews

Dr Says I'm Fine but I Know It's Skin Necrosis So Now What?

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        There are many ways to manage these issues, and I think that your plastic surgeon will have an advantage over online consultants.  An exam by a plastic surgeon would be recommended.  Going to the ER may not be the best idea, because they will likely not have the knowhow that a plastic surgeon would have. 

Kenneth Hughes, MD

Los Angeles, CA

Dr Says I'm Fine but I Know It's Skin Necrosis So Now What?

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If you are not comfortable with your surgeon's management of your course I would not discourage a second opinion. An opinion from a surgeon will be more useful than one from an ER doc in most circumstances. I see no urgency as I look at these photos. If you are studying worst case scenarios, I don't think getting reassurance on line will be helpful. 

Best wishes. 

Jourdan Gottlieb, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon

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.