"Packing" the belly button to keep it open after Tummy Tuck
This is a very good question as the belly button does tend to constrict and tighten with time. A tip that I have used is to
keep it open with an ear plug. The type
of ear plugs that you use to muffle sound when you are sleeping are ideal.
I do advise some of my patients to gently
insert an ear plug at night and make sure they do remove it in the
morning. I also encourage them to
massage the umbilicus to stretch the scar and keep it from tightening up.
Keeping the navel open after a tummy tuck
A navel needs too be kept open for 2 reasons: A non healing wound or a scar that is contracting.
- Non healing wound: Use a Q-tip dipped in hydrogen peroxide to clean the wound twice a day. Then wrap a small marble coated with antibiotic ointment in the belly button. This is to prevent the belly button from closing up as it heals.
- A scar that is contracting: Get your doctor to inject steroid into the scar to prevent the contracting process. Then apply the marble trick
As an aside, I don't like the round belly button scar. It is more prone to contract. Check out the web reference below for some talk on belly button scar design. I like the "inverted u" design because it looks better and is much less prone to contracting.
Treatment of the Umbilicus after Abdominoplasty
Thanks for your question. Some surgeons ask patients to pack the navel with objects like a marble to help the shape of the scar. In that case, the wound is closed and healed before the marble is used. If there is any open wound, however, packing is used to help the wound heal in well. Generally speaking, in this latter case, the key is keeping the wound clean and moist. Moist wounds heal roughly twice as quickly as dry wounds. The old adage that wounds need air, it turns out, is wrong in most all cases.
Navel stays open if properly done during surgery
The surgeon keeps the navel open by properly doing the naval repair. Cut well , sew well, do well is how it gos. Packing etc etc is rarely if ever needed unless there is an infection or some other unplanned issue. My Best, Dr C
Ways to keep the bellybutton open
If your bellybutton is developing some thickening and scarring and contracting injecting it with steroid can soften the scar. Occasionally I have recommended patients use earplugs which you can buy at the pharmacy to help keep it open. Be sure you check with your surgeon about these options. I would be careful about wearing that ear plugs continuously because they can put excess pressure on the skin.
Packing the Belly Button
During a tummy tuck the belly button is treated so that it remains alive. Toward the end of the procedure the belly button in positioned in the abdominal skin. It should remain alive and not have the tendency tos shrink. If it is shrinking or has shrunk then the circulation was poor therefore if the belly button is healthy then it does not need packing.
How to pack an open navel
The best way to pack an open navel is to use Xeroform gauze beginning immediately after surgery.
Best way to keep Belly button open after Tummy Tuck?
If your belly button has healed well and is starting to close due to scarring I would recommend injections of kenalog by your PSa dnthen placement of s silicone belly button ball to mould you belly button post-operatively. Good Luck!!
The marble trick after tummy tuck
Once healing is complete some do experience a contraction of the BB scar (though there are ways to prevent this during the procedure) and a narrowing of the BB opening. An effective method to keep the BB open is placement of a marble taped into place to apply pressure and mold the scar keeping the BB open. If you have the issue as your surgeon when you can try.
Hi MzJuicy. I have never needed to pack the navel in order to keep it open after a tummy tuck. I suggest you follow your surgeons's instructions.