Options for Revision After Full Tummy Tuck

What was supposed to be tightly pulled skin with possibility of low t-scar became this: lax skin and high scar. I will need help to fix this - what are my options? I know about a year of wait time. Relationship with the surgeon that did this to me is beyond repair after another surprising result - after scar revision. Check the stretch mark position before and after - does not it look strange? I wonder what was done to me. Would appreciate hypotheses and repair options for improved look.

Doctor Answers 8

You need a consultation

I would prefer not to put in print what I think of this operation. You did not have a full tummy tuck -- just a small amout of skin removed and the umbilicus cut around and put a little higher. As Dr Walek said, abdominoplasties are not simple operations and the surgeon needs to correctly evaluate your problem. It appears as if  you still have plenty of skin and could be improved. But this time go to an experienced, board certified plastic surgeon.

New York Plastic Surgeon
4.2 out of 5 stars 12 reviews

Tummy Tuck Revision

Thanks for posting the before and after pictures - it makes the Q&A more informative.  Without the operative details, it is hard to understand what happened during your surgery.  As you point out, an skin mark that was just above your belly button should be in your lower abdomen (much below the belly button) after a tummy tuck.  Why it did not change position and why you have a high vertical incision is very suspicious.  That this point, you are correct that you should wait 6 months to a year for a revision to allow the tissues to settle and the swelling to resolve.  At that point, you will likely need a revision tummy tuck.  


Good Luck.

David Shafer, MD
New York Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 75 reviews

This may require re-operative surgery.

Even with your pictures, it’s hard to know exactly what was done during your abdominoplasty procedure.Your pictures suggest minimal repositioning of the umbilicus with a high transverse incision. It’s also apparent that there’s been no movement of the skin above the belly button level.
Although it’s hard to know without a physical examination, these findings suggest inadequate soft tissue dissection above the umbilicus. Normally this dissection extends to the level of the rib cage.This maneuver helps mobilize the soft tissue so it can be advanced in an inferior direction.Absence of this type of dissection can explain many of your physical findings.
Unfortunately, correction of this problem will require re-operative surgery. It’s therefore important to consult with a board certified plastic surgeon with experience in this area who can evaluate your abdomen.This surgeon should be able to perform this evaluation and formulate a treatment plan that addresses your anatomic findings and achieves your aesthetic goals.

Richard J. Bruneteau, MD
Omaha Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 194 reviews

Options for post op tummy tuck

Dear Tony,

I'm so sorry. Looks like you had a panniculectomy, not an abdominoplasty. It is unfortunate your surgeon did not communicate this prior to your surgery date. I would have to examine you to determine if a revision could be possible.

Best wishes, Dr. H

Gary M. Horndeski, MD
Texas Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 223 reviews

Revision Tummy Tuck Surgery

It is very hard for me to say what the next step would be without examining you and seeing what was performed (your operative report).  Yes, allow yourself time to heal (1 year for the scars to mature and fade) and then go and  see a board certified plastic surgeon who SPECIALIZES in abdominal surgery to get an opinion.  Tummy tuck surgery is very tricky and experience is key!

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

Tummy tuck revision

The tummy tuck you apparently received involved a lower incision, some excision of skin from the lower abdomen, and small tightening of the upper abdominal skin.

The factors that resulted in the scars you currently have were fully predictable preoperatively given the type of tummy tuck chosen.

When considering a revision, consult with very experienced board certified plastic surgeons who will honestly assess you, not alarm you unnecessarily, and help you get the best result possible.


Brent Moelleken, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 177 reviews

Options for Revision After Full Tummy Tuck

I see no options to be truthful. Seeing the posted befores I most likely would have declined to do a tummy tuck upon you. The photos showing the results show a poorly planned operation. The verticle infra umbilical scar is fromthe position of the pre surgery umbilicus. The marked stretch mark is in the same locale but in the before photos the extra skin is removed or tighten. The horizontal scar is much to high. Sorry for your issues. 

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

Abdominoplasty vs Tummy Tuck

I always find it unfortunate that we still talk about tummy tucks! It seems to me that this minimizes the complexity and extensive nature of the procedure. True, there are a range of deformities that require a range of surgical options but a great deal of experience is requires to determine the proper selection of procedures and execute those procedures well. The photos you show pre-op demonstrate a common situation that is deceptively difficult to correct. Your low BMI also make the procedure technically demanding in my experience.

First and foremost consult a board certified Plastic Surgeon who does a good deal of body contouring. Be clear about your expectations and accept the scaring and possible complications. Revision will be much more difficult than the first time around and you will have to accept the limitations.

Thomas R. Walek, MD
Providence Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 12 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.