9 Days Post Op My Tummy Tuck Incision Doesn't Seem To Be Where My Dr. Marked.

I had a full TT 9 days ago. I am relatively thin, so my doctor said I would have a vertical T. Before my surgery he marked me in my bikini, and the line was low, but now my incision and vertical T seem to be a lot higher than where he marked me. I know I am swollen, but even when this subsides, I am worried the incision and T wont be concealed.

Doctor Answers 14

Tummy Tuck - 9 Days Post Op My Tummy Tuck Incision Doesn't Seem To Be Where My Dr. Marked

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There are many possible explanations for this but, in any event, it's too early to be overly concerned or, for sure, to do anything about it.

The location of tummy tuck incisions is an issue that arises fairly often.  In general, the intent is to place the incisions in the least visible location(s).  This is obviously more difficult if a vertical component is being added to the incision pattern but the primary issue is how high the horizontal incision will be.

The problem is that marking it is one thing, where it winds up is another.  That is because the final location is due to other factors - aside from where it is marked - including the amount of tension on the incision and the disparity between relatively thin and loose pubic skin versus thicker abdominal skin.  If relatively more pubic skin is left in place (ie, not removed), then one has left thinner, stretchier skin.  Depending on how much elasticity remains in the skin, this may stretch more than the upper skin, thereby allowing the scar to migrate superiorly (upward toward the ribcage).

Finally, if the patient is someone who has already gained and lost a lot of weight - such as after bariatric surgery or a comparable weight loss - then there will be less inherent elasticity remaining in the skin, and thinner skin will stretch out.

So - putting all of this together - it is not unheard of for a scar to migrate away from where it is marked preoperatively.  That being said, it is WAY too early to be overly concerned...the swelling and distortion at this early stage means that you'll need to give it at least a few months to settle down before any final determination is made.

I hope that this helps, and good luck,

Dr. E

9 Days Post Op My Tummy Tuck Incision Doesn't Seem To Be Where My Dr. Marked.

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No photos were posted so very hard to advise, discuss with you. Obtain a second opinion in person from a boarded PSs in your area. 

Concerned about high tummy tuck scar

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Even though you are still early in the healing process, it is very probable that your scar will remain somewhat high particularly if the problem is situated more centrally where the mons has been displaced higher because of its pre-existing laxity. It may be that with time this will improve slightly without surgery. However, if this is not the case, the ability to lower the scar later on may be limited.

Discuss your concerns with your surgeon.

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

Planning is everything

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The placement of a tummy tuck scar must be planned much lower.  The tension of the closure under tension will elevate the incision upward.  Ther is a technique  that  perform to estimate the upward tension and the final position.  The swelling will contribute some in the position but not very much. Good luck

Miguel Delgado, MD
San Francisco Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 81 reviews

Too high scar...there are options if it remains high

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It's too early to tell, but if your scars remains high after fully healed,  it's poosible to lower it and remove the vertical with a lower "miniabdominoplasty and relocating the umbilicus a bit lower.  Sometimes that is preferable in place of a full abdominoplasty.  So hang in there and don't fear; there might be options to imporve it.

Daniel Yamini, MD
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
4.8 out of 5 stars 21 reviews

Incision line higher than expected

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The incision line must be marked with the skin pulled tight. If the final tightness its greater than when the skin is marked then the incision line will be higher than expected. That said, give this time to see what happens. Good luck with your recovery.

Victor Au, MD (retired)
Chapel Hill Plastic Surgeon

Tummy tuck scar higher than expected

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When planning a tummy tuck incision it is important to keep the scar low and well concealed. It is important as well to anticipate that the pull of the skin after will cause the incision line to rise up given the dynamics of the skin laxity. Once the scar is high, it can be difficult to move it lower. Wait and let things heal well, perhaps a year or longer, and revision might bring the scar down.

Best of luck,


Peter E. Johnson, MD
Chicago Plastic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 44 reviews

Scar position after Tummy tuck

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Your surgeon most ilkely marked you standing up before surgery. He/She incorporated the vertical T to get your incision as low as possible, nevretheless, as the abdominal skin is pulled down, the pubic skin is pulled up to get as tight a closure as possible. However, it is too early to exactly judge the final position of your scar. Discuss the situattion and your concerns frankly with your surgeon and most of all, be patient, you are very early in your postoperative course. Good Luck

Johan E. Brahme, MD
San Diego Plastic Surgeon
4.3 out of 5 stars 20 reviews

Final incision location after tummy tuck

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Its still early after your tummy tuck so give it some time as swelling and other healing factors are still progressing.  The marking for the final incision location should always be lower than where you want it to end up since the closure of the tummy tuck incision always puts upward traction on the lower tissue and raises the final incision location.  Luckily this can be corrected down the road with a revision.  It usually requires partially or fully redoing the tummy tuck, but in my experience and that of my patients it is worth it.  Take a look at the link of the before and after photo below as an example.

All the best,

Dr Repta

Remus Repta, MD
Scottsdale Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 173 reviews

Location of tummy tuck scar

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It is possible that your scar may have migrated upward slightly due to the tension which was required to close your incision. Especially since you are so thin, you may not have had significant laxity of your abdominal tissues. Discuss this with your plastic surgeon and follow the post-op  instructions closely.

Best wishes,


William Bruno, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 410 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.