Is this fat necrosis? (Photo)

Had a TT on march 14th. Everything looked good until about a week & a half ago. I see my ps on Tuesday but am getting very worried about this area.

Doctor Answers 5

Fat Necrosis

Thank you for your picture. This does not appear to be fat necrosis. An examination would definitely determine if you had hardening of the fat beneath your incision but the photo does not depict this. Your incision does have small wounds this needs to be evaluated by your plastic surgeon.

Good luck.

Earl  Stephenson Jr MD DDS FACS

Scar looks bad a month after tummy tuck

  • Your photo shows redness and tiny openings along the suture line.
  • After a tummy tuck, you have absorbing sutures beneath the skin.
  • They start to absorb about this time.
  • This may hurt for a day or two and a few sutures may be ejected through the scar.
  • There is nothing to worry about before you see your plastic surgeon - s/he will be able to further advise you. Best wishes

Elizabeth Morgan, MD, PhD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 43 reviews

Suture Reactions and Suture Abscesses Following Surgery

Thank you for the picture. This is not fat the necrosis. These are localized reactions to underlying suture material that was used to reapproximate the skin edges. These reactions tend to occur more commonly with braided suture material, but can occur with monofilament suture.

It is common for these types of reactions to occur several weeks following surgery. The localized areas may become reddened and the skin edges just separate; or, other times the reaction may remain more initially contained and resemble a pimple or whitehead that then opens and drains a small amount of cloudy or whitish-colored fluid. These suture abscesses most likely result from an inflammatory reaction to the suture material (which is a foreign body that the immune system is reacting against). But a few bacteria in a braided suture could insight a similar response. The process usually resolves fairly quickly after the offending suture material has been removed. Oral antibiotics are not usually required, and healing is not usually altered significantly.

You should keep the area clean and covered with gauze. Ask your plastic surgeon if there is any other treatment that s/he prefers. Providing there is not a significant amount of increasing redness, the areas can be evaluated in a few days when you follow up in the office. Best wishes.

Kenneth Dembny, II, MD
Milwaukee Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 34 reviews

Is this fat necrosis? (Photo)

This is most likely a reaction to the suture material rather than fat necrosis. I recommend you have this checked out by your surgeon.
Meanwhile keep the area clean and use topical antibiotic twice daily until you see him. Good luck.

Maan Kattash, MD, FRCS, FACS
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 53 reviews

S this fat necrosis after tummy tuck surgery?

Thank you for the question and picture. These types of localized incision line problems are not uncommonly seen after tummy tuck surgery (and our often suture related).   It is not fat necrosis.  Your plastic surgeon  will be your best resource to assist you;  sometimes removal of an offending suture will allow for expedited healing.  I tell my patients who are experiencing this situation approximately one month after the procedure was performed, that sometimes the area may look worse before it looks better directly.   Generally speaking, these types of incision line concerns do not detract from the long-term outcome seen after tummy tuck surgery. Best wishes.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,488 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.