Would You Go with a U Shape or W Shape Incision for Best Results? Can a W Shape Pull my Waist in Tighter? (photo)

I'm 5'1" 125 lbs. ( I've come to the conclusion that all scales lie )

Doctor Answers 11

What scar would yeild the best abdominoplasty scar

I concur with my colleagues answers to this important question. The best and most natural scar lies low in the suprapubic area and curve gently outward along the hip bone. I always make sure the scars lie below your favorite undergarment or swim suite. The W scar appears abnormal and bring attention to the eyes more so than a gentle curve scar.

Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

Not a

My favorite scars have a low central horizontal component Just above the pubic area) and then angle upwards towards the hips. I guess it looks  more like a saucer. The angle of the lateral parts of the scar depend on how you wear your clothes/ bathing suit.

Manuel M. Pena, MD
Naples Plastic Surgeon
3.4 out of 5 stars 5 reviews

"W" or "U" tummy tuck scars

The "W" pattern is non-anatomic since the limbs of the "W" cross the lines of relaxed skin tension (RSTL's).  This is a sure-fire way to have a visible and noticeable scar.  The "W" was designed to unload tension in the middle of the lower abdomen but this approach has all but been discarded because of the unnatural nature of the scar pattern.

Be sure to see a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon who has  had a lot of experience with abdominoplasty.  Be sure to review a comprehensive portfolio of pre- and post-op pictures so you can gauge your surgeon's expertise and so you can get a good idea of the type of results that are reasonable to expect.

Daniel Greenwald, MD
Tampa Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 46 reviews

Scar shape for tummy tuck

I like the gentle smile scar for the tummy tuck. Keep the scar low down and figure out where you want the corners so you can wear a bathing suit. The W scars always appear sloppy to my eye.

Ronald J. Edelson, MD
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

Tummy tuck incision shape

It appears as though a U shape might be the best for you.  However, it's difficult to tell without examing you first.  The tummy tuck will help to remove the excess abdominal skin and to tighten your abdominal muscles.  Good luck!

Jeffrey E. Schreiber, MD, FACS
Baltimore Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 202 reviews

Incision selection, W or U for tummt tuck and tightness of waist

Tightness af waist mostly depends on plication of abdominal muscles and shrinkage of the skin of the waist lines, as well as extending the incision more laterally. I use W incisions when excess skin on the midline is moderate. Base on the posted photos. I believe a U shape incision could produce better results.I prefer liposelection for better contouring of the waist line.

Fereydoon S. Mahjouri, MD
Minneapolis Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 16 reviews

Incision Choice for Abdominoplasty

Hi It's About Time

Choice of incision between a U and a W is not really important. You should choose a scar that will hide well under your preferred style of underwear (generally a U nowadays)

For a while, plastic surgeons were caught up on where the tension in the abdominoplasty closure (scar) was. Original descriptions placed the tension centrally in a U scar, and on the sides in a W scar. Most of us now use a combination of the techniques or steps that are across both types of abdominoplasty.

Hope this helps. Good Luck.

Dr Gavin Sandercoe


Gavin Sandercoe, MBBS, FRACS
Sydney Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Selecting incision type for an abdominoplasty

Most patient's these days want the scar in a low bikini type shape.  The direction or location of the scar can be individualized for each patient.  I usually have my patients wear what ever underwear bottom or bathing suit bottom that they want to wear after surgery and we plan the incision to be covered.   Just as Coco Chanel said "Fashion fades, only style remains the same."  


Jeffrey Zwiren, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

W-Shape or U-Shape Incisions in Tummy Tucks

Dear It's About Time,  Thanks for the question and the photos.  From your photos, you are a good candidate for an abdominoplasty(tummy tuck).  The type of incision really has very little contribution to the shape of the final result.  It is the tightening of the underlying muscles used in combination with skin resection and liposuction that determine the final shape and results.  To truly understand what options are best for you, please consult with a board-certified plastic surgeon who after a consultation and examination can be direct you on how to achieve your goals.  Hope this helps.

Herluf G. Lund, Jr, MD
Saint Louis Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 84 reviews

Which abdominoplasty incision gives the best improvement in my waist?

Thanks for the question and photos. The type of incision does not make any difference. The skin is a cover. The muscle work underneath and liposuction of your upper abdomen, waist, hips and back will define your final shape. See a board certified plastic surgeon for a cosultation/evaluation. Good luck.

George Marosan, MD
Bellevue Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 38 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.