Is It Normal for a Tummy Tuck Incision to Be Splitting Open?

i had liposuction and a tummy tuck and the incision is splitting apart and getting more and more red. is this normal? my surgeon said it was but when i went to a doctor for a second opinion he said it wasn't but he couldn't do anything about it becuase he was not my surgeon. i don't know what to do or think.

Doctor Answers 7

Is It Normal for a Tummy Tuck Incision to Be Splitting Open?

I am sorry to hear about the complication you are experiencing.  Superficial separation of the incision line is a known complication after tummy tuck surgery.   Close follow up with your plastic surgeon will be in your best interests; sometimes removal of a exposed suture and/or removal of any unhealthy tissue will expedite healing. Otherwise, wound care regimens will differ from one plastic surgeon to another.  Generally, this will involve application of some type of sterile dressing ( in my practice I use a non-stick dressing covered by a sterile dressing). You should have peace of mind that these types of wound healing problems generally go on to heal over the course of the next several weeks,  without long-term sequelae. Also important to concentrate on a healthy diet,  including good protein source. Occasionally, in the event of a wider scar, scar revision surgery may be helpful down the line.  Best wishes. 

San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1,498 reviews

Tummy tuck incisions.

 Unfortunately this is a complication of the procedure and is referred to as an incisional dehiscence which can have multiple causes including poor nutrition post-op, infection, smoking and increased tension. If you can, you may want to increase your oral protein intake to 60 gm per day with a protein supplement. Look out for infection and protect the incision by keeping slightly flexed at the waist. Other things that can contribute to it are smoking and even second hand smoke, as well as underlying fluid collections. 

Good luck

Dr. Trussler

Andrew P. Trussler, MD
Austin Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

Open wound followng tummy tuck

Smokers are definitely more prone to this problem. If the wound is open, you should be performing some form of wound care. A separation of 1-3 mm may be of little concern whereas a 1 cm opening is a different matter and may require more agressive treatment.

Otto Joseph Placik, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 82 reviews

The opening post surgery is not normal

The wound dehesince post surgery is unusual an needs treatment. You needto discus your concern with your doctor and if not happy with your doctors care,seek another plastic surgeon. There are many reasons for the wound opening including poor nutritient, smoking, too tight closure,infection .

Kamran Khoobehi, MD
New Orleans Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 124 reviews

Tummy tuck incision opening

Your abdominal incision really should not be open.  If you can find another surgeon in your area who is willing to assist you with wound care as the incision closes, that would be optimal.  If a very large segment is open, you may need to have this cleaned and closed in the operating room.  If you are experiencing any fevers or drainage, you should either call your initial surgeon or see another surgeon right away.  Good luck, /nsn.

Nina S. Naidu, MD, FACS
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 14 reviews

Opening Incision

Strictly speaking, separation of a surgical incision is never "normal" but is not uncommon. The fact that it is associated with redness means that it is inflammed and may be infected.

Your surgeon should make clear to you what he/she thinks is going on and how it needs to be managed.

Peter A. Aldea, MD
Memphis Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 109 reviews

Incision Opening After Tummy Tuck

This is not normal. You need to express your concern to your surgeon and if they don't address it, please seek the advice of another surgeon who can. Best of luck.

Jerome Edelstein, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 179 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.