Slit for Belly Button?

I had tummy tuck and's been 8 weeks now and my belly button is a mere small slit . What I am wondering is.. do we need a belly button to be open or can it just be left this way or is it ugly? I really don't want to go thru another surgery for something that really healthwise doesn't matter.

Doctor Answers 13

Belly Button following tummy tuck

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A full abdominoplasty requires the surgical creation of a new belly button. Creating the new belly button, which is called an umbilicoplasty, is a part of tummy tuck surgery that requires a great deal of attention and finesse on the part of the surgeon. My goal is to create a new belly button that, as much as possible, resembles a 'natural' belly button. Natural belly buttons do NOT look like a perfect circle, and circular umbilicoplasty scars are a tummy tuck dead giveaway.

The technique I use for umbilicoplasty is designed to create a slightly 'hooded' appearance to the upper half of the belly button, an appearance that is generally considered fit and athletic. Not all patients have the goal of wearing a two-piece swimsuit, but many do, and I want these patients to be able to do so without feeling self-conscious about the appearance of their new belly button.

Communicate wit your plastic surgeon about your concerns

Raleigh-Durham Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 123 reviews

Small Slit for Belly Button after Tummy Tuck

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          If the slit is large enough a marble or something similar can be helpful for preventing further contraction.  If you are a hypertrophic scar or keloid scar former, belly button constriction is far more common. This can be fixed in a 10 minute office procedure under local anesthesia. 

Belly button "touch-ups" can work well.

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You are still early in your recovery from tummy tuck surgery. If you are bother by it at all, then consider a revision which is typically performed in office setting under local anesthesia. I typically wait at least 6 months to perform a revision.  Not to worry too much!

George H. Landis, MD
Minneapolis Plastic Surgeon

Unattractive Belly Button

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The umbilicus (belly button) is not a necessary structure.  If you are not satisfied with the aesthetics of your belly button then you are not obligated to correct it .  The are not health consequences.


Dr. ES

Concern for a slit like belly button

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Having a small, slit like belly button is not usually a medically concerning issue except for the problem at times of keeping it clean as it may accumulate material. It can be an aesthetic detraction, particularly if you do not like its appearance. You are still early in the healing process so for a variety of reasons, I would wait another few months before undergoing a revision if it is still indicated.

Presently, I would mention your concerns of its shape and size with your plastic surgeon. Typically, a revision of this is a very minor procedure which can be performed in the office under local anesthesia.

Good luck

Steven Turkeltaub, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 33 reviews

Small belly button after tummy tuck

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At this point you are still early in your recovery from tummy tuck surgery. If you are ok with the belly button appearance then you don't need additional surgery to correct it. The only thing with a very small belly button is that it's difficult to clean. If you are bother by it at all, then consider a revision which is typically performed in office setting under local anesthesia. I usually will perform it after 6 to 9 months from the initial surgery.

Stewart Wang, MD, FACS
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 28 reviews

Small umbilical opening following an abdominoplasty

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It is certainly possible that your umbilical opening will change over time.  Eight weeks is very early in the healing process.  At times the umbilical opening will contract down and get very small.  In these cases a minor revision may be necessary.  Discuss your concerns with your plastic surgeon.  

Jeffrey Zwiren, MD
Atlanta Plastic Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

The belly button may appear too small due to swelling

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 At first, the belly button may appear to be small and when the swelling around the belly button goes away it will appear to be the proper size it was designed to be.  This is the most common reason that the belly button appears too small immediately after surgery.  It may take 6 months to see the final result.  You should speak to your plastic surgeon about this. 

Dev Wali, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 58 reviews

Belly button after tummy tuck

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belly button after tummy tuck

  1. too small is easier to fix than too big
  2. small procedure under local 

Jed H. Horowitz, MD, FACS
Orange County Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 116 reviews

Not necessary to "fix" belly button

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The shape of the belly button after a tummy tuck is dependent on the surgeon and the technique used for your surgery.  In general, there is no health risk to leaving your belly button as it is.  If you are unhappy with the shape, or if you are having problems, a small surgery can be done to change the size and shape.  This is often done with local anesthesia.  There is no harm in waiting, either, to decide if you are satisfied with how it looks.


Hope this helps.

Michael S. Hopkins, MD (retired)
Albuquerque Plastic Surgeon

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.