Would a Tummy Tuck Get Rid of All the Scar's on my Wifes Stomach? (photo)

My military wife has scars on her abdomen from an apendectomy, hystorectomy and umbilical hernia's. Now we have questioned the military surgeon's on the possibility of a tummy tuck to improve the look of her abdomen but they all say it's not possible. She has had lipo done to reduce the size of her abdomen but I think that there is someone out there who can help her because this is killing her self-esteem. If I could please get some professional opinions. Concerned Military Husband

Doctor Answers 15

Tummy tuck only option...

A tummy tuck with wide undermining of the abdominal tissues will get rid of most if not all of the scars.  The only "problem" is that your wife appears extremely fit and therefore doesn't have much loose skin or abdominal tissues to pull down which means the ultimate lower abdominal scar may not be as low as we'd like.  Without examining her its impossible to give a definitive answer, but I believe she can have a good result and should go for it!

Manhattan Plastic Surgeon
4.4 out of 5 stars 55 reviews

Removal of scars with tummy tuck

Based on these photos, I would not expect that all of the scars could be removed with an abdominoplasty. The normal skin excision pattern involves the removal of skin just above the belly button. The right sided scar is about 3 cm above this normal skin excision pattern and would be very difficult to remove. I would suggest a tummy tuck to tighten the abdominal skin and lower the right sided scar, but your expectations on scar improvement should be tempered. You also need to remember that the abdominoplasty scar is not a small one and the healing of such a scar is difficult to fully predict. While it is normally well concealed with underwear and clothing, it is typically slightly wider and more noticeable that the scars that are depicted in these photos. 

Wm. Todd Stoeckel, MD
Raleigh-Durham Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 76 reviews

Tummy Tuck And Abdominal Scars?

Thank you for the question and pictures. I am glad that your spouse has your support;  I'm sure this is very meaningful/helpful to her.

 I think your spouse will benefit greatly from tummy tuck surgery. However,  it is very likely that all of the abdominal wall scars cannot be removed with the operation.  The scar present along the right upper abdominal wall will likely remain ( of course much lower after the tummy tuck operation). Of course, in person examination will be necessary for more precise advice.  The presence of the scars will necessitate extremely careful planning/execution of the operation to avoid blood flow compromise and resulting wound healing problems.

 I would suggest that you consult with board certified plastic surgeons in person; ask to see lots of examples of  similar patients they have taken care of.

Best wishes.

Tummy tuck can get rid of unsightly abdominal scars

An abdominoplasty will help your wife tremendously.  But it has to be done by an experienced plastic surgeon.  The skin that contains the scars may be removed.  This will leave a scar running along her lower abdomen where it can be hidden within the bikini line.  This is the part that demands surgical expertise.  There are some tricks to getting the scar low enough to be concealed.  I've attached a link to my website that includes some photos of women with scars on their abdomen so you can see how they can be removed at the time of a tummy tuck.  Yes, usually this problem affects women more than their husbands and correcting it does wonders for their self-confidence.  Actually, I have a study on the changes in self-esteem and quality of life that was published just last April in the Journal of Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery.

Eric Swanson, MD
Kansas City Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 48 reviews

Tummy Tuck for Wife's Scars

It is difficult to say without a little more history and examination. I would like to know if she has had any children or is planning to have some as tightening the abdominal wall may be necessary, but I don't like to perform that part of the procedure if the patient is still planning on having children. That said, it looks like a tummy tuck might actually work and remove her scars including the higher one on the left side.

Howard N. Robinson, MD (retired)
Miami Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 62 reviews

Scar removal from tummy tuck

Based on the photos, all of the scars will most likely not be removed from a tummy tuck.  They will however most likely move down closer to the panty line from the skin being pulled down during the procedure.  A visit to a Board Certified Plastic Surgeon may help specifically answer your questions on scar positioning.  Good luck!

Mennen T. Gallas, MD
Katy Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 18 reviews

Abdominal Scars and Abdominoplasty

Thank you for your question and your concern for your wife's well-being.  The lower a scar is on the abdomen the more likely it is to be removed with an abdominoplasty.  Having more loose skin in the upper abdomen will also facilitate movement of the skin as it is pulled lower during the procedure.  I am somewhat uncertain about the apparent scar in the upper right abdomen as it is not in the usual location of scars that result from the procedures she has had performed.  It is important to speak to your plastic surgeon before proceeding with surgery to discuss the implications of the upper scar on blood supply and possible healing problems.  Good luck.

Richard Kofkoff, MD, FACS
Saint Louis Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 71 reviews

Subtotal Scar Removal with Tummy Tuck

She will be able to get some of her scars removed but not all of them. Those scars that lie below the belly button and around it can be removed but anything above that will not. Given her weight and apparent level of fitness, she may only be able to get a mini-tummy tuck so even less scars would be able to be removed. 

Getting rid of abdominal scars with tummy tuck

Based on the photos alone, it's possible that tummy tuck will get rid of all but one of the scars on her abdomen. The transverse scar on her upper right abdomen will persist but end up at a very lower part of her abdomen.  Even with one scar remain, she will still benefit significantly from improvement of her abdominal contour. The depression of the scar can be revised so it's flat. Overall abdominal skin will be taut. I would recommend that you seek out plastic surgeon who's able to help her. 

Stewart Wang, MD FACS, Wang Plastic Surgery

Stewart Wang, MD, FACS
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 27 reviews

Abdominal scars and TT

Dear nakedasnake,

   Thanks for submitting your's wife picture.  The appearance of the abdomen can be improved  significantly. The appendectomy and hysterectomy will be removed with the abdominoplasty. The skin fold ( scar ? ) on the right side above the umbilicus , can not be removed , but pulling the skin down will flatten it so it will not be noticable.  One thing will have to be acceptable by your wife, a small vertical scar at the mid lower or lower abdomen which is the old location of the belly button. Due to the skin tightness of the upper abdomen the belly button skin will not be able to be pulled down to the pubic area, leaving the scar mentioned above. Consult with an experienced board certified plastic surgeon.

                  Best of luck,

                                           Dr Widder  

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.