Can a tummy tuck scar be minimized?

I am planning on getting a tummy tuck, but the scars in the photos that I see look horrendous. I cringe looking at the scar on others. I can only imagine how I will feel seeing the scar on myself. Is there anything that can be done about the scar to minimize it whether during the procedure or after the scar has healed?

Doctor Answers 8

Incision lines and scars following tummy tuck surgery.

In my experience making an incision short is of false benefit since it prevents removal of the optimal amount of skin during a tummy tuck.  Minimizing the scar is possible in my experience through the use of Embrace Scar Therapy although it would not be realistic to state that the scar becomes invisible.  Discuss this option or other gel applications (which I think are beneficial but less effective) with your ABPS board-certified plastic surgeon.
Jon A Perlman M.D., FACS
Diplomate, American Board of Plastic Surgery
Member, American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS)
ABC-TV Extreme Makeover Surgeon
Beverly Hills, California

Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 29 reviews

Can a tummy tuck scar be minimized?

Thank you for your question. While there are many things you can do to make the scar look its best, you can never get rid of a scar. A tummy tuck scar should be placed low, but because of tension of the closure, some scars can be unsightly. There are many scar creams on the market to help scarring and the one I prefer is BioCorneum, which is a silicone scar gel. There is also a new device called Embrace that is a pressure offloading dressing that is applied to the scar after surgery. This is a great device and leads to fantastic results, but the treatment can be a costly addition to surgery. If you are looking for optimal scar results from a tummy tuck with no regard to cost, I would say Embrace is the way to go.Hope this helps!

Everyone scars differently

but you can do things post-op to help, such as using silicone based scar products.  More importantly, you should make sure your surgeon will place your scar low as I've seen horrendously HIGH scars from others asking questions.  And anything that helps minimize tension on your would will help the outcome of your scarring.  And all scars do get better with time as the redness and thickness often subside with time.

Curtis Wong, MD
Redding Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 32 reviews

Can a tummy tuck scar be minimized?

Thank you for the question.The key to addressing scarring during a tummy tuck surgery is placing the scar low. Many surgeons make the incision too high, and the patient has an incision going across the center of their abdomen. Even the perfect scar is noticeable, when it isn't hidden by clothing. A tummy tuck scar should be hidden by underwear and clothing.After the surgery, silicone scar products and taping can be used to help the scar fade and flatten more quickly. It's important to understand that scars take a full year to mature and become less noticeable. Express your concerns to your surgeon. Although a scar will be present, if it's hidden and heals nicely most women are very happy with their decision to have tummy tuck surgery.

Can a tummy tuck scar be minimized?

First, it is critical the surgeon places the scar quite low, some surgeons make the incision way too high. Next, the closure should be done in a manner that takes all the  stress off the skin closure, ie the use of the progressive advancement suture technique. Postop scar care also helps, our preference is a product called BioCorneum, a silicone product. But in spite of all the precautions a good aesthetic surgeon takes, in the end the scar is greatly dependent on the patient's genetics. Some of the photos you are seeing are probably taken within the first few months of surgery when they still can have a red color, otherwise they would not show in the photo. Over years the scars soften and fade dramatically for most patients. 

Ronald V. DeMars, MD
Portland Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

Can a tummy tuck scar be minimized?

any particular patient scars is unpredictable and is related to many factors including genetics. Scars generally improve with time but do not totally disappear. Leaving on steristrips for 3 or more weeks and massaging the tissue after that on an ongoing basis help in most patients. Avoiding exposing the scars to sun will diminish the risk of darker pigmentation.

There are a multitude of products that claim to help scars, but there is little valid scientific evidence that they accomplish what is claimed. An extensive review of the medical literature showed that: ·        Silicone gel and silicone sheeting are currently the most beneficial. ·        Silicone sheeting is more effective than silicone gel. ·        Vitamin E and Mederma are not routinely effective. ·        BioCorneum, a silicone gel product has been beneficial for many of our patients. You should discuss your concerns and the options with your plastic surgeon who should be certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery and ideally a member of the American Society for Aesthetic Plastic Surgery (ASAPS) and follow his or her advice.

Robert Singer, MD FACS

LaJolla, California

Robert Singer, MD
La Jolla Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 19 reviews

Tummy tuck scar

Thanks for your question.  I wish there was a way for us to remove skin during a tummy tuck and have no scar.  You have to decide what you can rather live with: the skin or the scar.   Scars do fade over time and there are steps to improve them but the scar will never disappear.  I hope this helps. Best of luck. 

Scars following a tummy tuck

Unfortunately, it is impossible to perform surgery without scar.  Keep in mind that all surgical scars will fade with time -- this means that scar will go through a mean, red, inflammatory phase; and will fade about 6 months to one year following surgery.  During the inflammatory phase, there are many things that you can do to help this process along -- this includes avoiding exposing the scar to direct sunlight, massaging the scar, using silicone sheets or even paper tape on the scar, and any variety of scar treatment products available on the market.  Definitely discuss what options your plastic surgeon prefers!  Good luck! 

Anureet K. Bajaj, MD
Oklahoma City Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 17 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.