How Long Will It Take to for my Belly Button to Look Normal After a Tummy Tuck? (photo)

I had a tummy tuck March 1st 2012. I am still waiting for my belly button to look normal. How long does it take or do you think i need a revision on my belly button. I am happy with my scar just not my belly button.

Doctor Answers 9

Belly button

You appear to have hypertrophic scarring. This is partially caused by your healing pattern. The passage of time,steroid injections, or a scar revision may help 

New York Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 14 reviews



Normal is different for every person. It looks like you scar more than an average person. You can try scar therapy or a revision. You should address your concern with your PS.


Stuart B. Kincaid, MD, FACS (in memoriam)
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
3.3 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

How Long Will It Take to for my Belly Button to Look Normal After a Tummy Tuck?

Sorry to say that this is a final result. As for dark areas there could lighten over the next few years. 

Darryl J. Blinski, MD
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 173 reviews

Concerned about Appearance of Umbilicus after Tummy Tuck??

Unfortunately, ongoing time will not necessarily improve the appearance of your umbilicus. The heavy scar will need to be treated either with steroid injection and/or scar revision surgery.

 Best wishes.

Tom J. Pousti, MD, FACS
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,487 reviews

Scarring aroung umbilicus

Thanks for your question, I believe a conservative trial of steroid injections should be tried first.  If that does not work you will need a scar revision.

Vishnu Rumalla, MD
Dallas Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 196 reviews

Scar Revision Should Wait At Least 18 Months

Unfortunately, unfavorable scarring after a cosmetic procedure is one of the risks of the procedure.  We cannot completely predict which patients will develop hypertrophic or keloid scarring.  Hypertrophic scariing is a raised scar, confined to the original scar that regresses with time. A keloid scar is a thick scar that extends beyond the original injury and does not regress with time.  Kenalog injection can help to manage hypertrophic or keloid scarring early in the recovery phase.  Silicone sheeting also helps to modulate the scar.  If it does not improve to your satisfaction, I would recommend waiting at least 18 months before proceeding with revision.  Best wishes!

Robert F. Centeno, MD, FACS
Columbus Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 77 reviews

Tummy Tuck Belly Button

The belly button after TT should look good by 6 months. You have a thick (hypertrophic) scar which is unlikely to improve on its own:

  • Scar massage and/or silicone scar tape is not likely to be very helpful but can't hurt.
  • Steroid injections and/or laser treatments might offer a slightly better chance for improvement. (Caution: Steroid injections can overly thin the skin.)
  • Surgery to remove the scar is another option. However, if you have a tendency to form thick scars, it could happen again.

All plastic surgeons who do tummy tucks have seen this in about 5% of their patients. Discuss this with your PS to see what's worked best in his/her practice.

Thanks for the question and good luck.

Stephen M. Lazarus, MD
Knoxville Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 9 reviews

How to help your belly button scar after a tummy tuck.

From the photos posted, your belly button appears to have what is called a hypertrophic scar - which is a fancy name for a thick/hard scar.  The scar has also narrowed the opening of your belly button.  There are some things that may help this - but unfortunately they dont always help...  Injections (performed by your plastic surgeon) with a type of steroid medication sometimes may help soften/flatten the scar, topical scar creams, silicone sheets, and massage of the scar may also help (but, unfortunately, not always).  Some patients use an earplug or marble early on following a tummy tuck to help shapen the belly button and possibly help prevent this.  If all of these things dont help, then sometimes a scar revision may help.  You should discuss these options with your plastic surgeon.  

Joseph D. Alkon, MD
Newark Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 93 reviews

How Long Will It Take to for my Belly Button to Look Normal

This navel will probably not look normal without intervention. You have a hypertrophic scar with some contracture. You should discuss with your surgeon the possibility of kenalog injections or scar creams, and if that fails, a revision procedure to the navel, followed up with kenalog injections to lower the odds of recurrence. 

Thanks for your question, best wishes. 

Jourdan Gottlieb, MD
Seattle Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 45 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.