Vertical TT Incision: Was it Necessary?

Let me start out saying my surgeon is fabulous and I do love my results but was wondering if such a long vertical was really necessary. I was warned pre-op that I could possibly have a small T-shaped incision. Went to 4 PS and they all said the same thing. So expected to end up with one but thought maybe an inch or two. My stretched tummy was a result from gaining 80 pounds with both my pregnancies. Always been on the smaller side 5feet 4inches 120 pounds.

Doctor Answers 11


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It is very hard to say. In this instance a picture does little justice.  An examination before hand gives the surgeon the information to estimate just how much skin is available before the decision to "T" it off is done.  This decision is revisited at the time of surgery.  It is every plastic surgeon's effort to minimize the length of the "T"

Dr. ES

Concerns regarding a "T" scar with a tummy tuck.

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You postoperative contour is very nice. Whether or not the vertical scar was absolutely necessary is open for debate though it was not "wrong" to use it as it did address the considerable horizontal laxity that you did have. With that amount of excess, a "small" vertical scar would not do the "job" so the full length vertical scar would be needed. What was discussed with you by your plastic surgeon regarding this particular scar and your understanding of it for me would only be conjecture.

A considerably longer horizontal scar might have largely or fully addressed your laxity as compared to the shorter horizontal scar with the additional vertical scar that you have. This is somewhat of a trade-off though I prefer the longer horizontal scar alone for my patients versus the additional vertical scar - if at all possible.

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

Vertical TT Incision: Was it Necessary?

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Interesting situation. Thanks for before and after photos. First your result is good to very good. I have a few issues. The horizontal length is too short and it appears as if you have bilateral "dog ears" at ends of incision. Second,  the long vertical scar though allows a very acceptable result you seem to not have had an informed consent. Hearing "short" vertical scar and ending with an unexpected result is a break in communications between you and your chosen surgeon. Please understand that pre operative discussions are paramount in avoiding these types of issues. From MIAMI  

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Vertical tummy tuck scar

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You have a great looking waist line and flat looking belly.  The price was the vertical scar.  These scars tend to heal very nicely and I think when you are able to wear nice tight clothes without any skin or fat bulges showing through, you'll forget about the vertical scar

Was such a long vertical scar necessary?  Could it have been a little shorter?  That is difficult to say without having been in the OR and seeing how your tissues moved.  However given your result, I think your plastic surgeon likely knew what he/she was doing.


Martin Jugenburg, MD

Martin Jugenburg, MD
Toronto Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 518 reviews

There are different ways of doing Tummy Tucks

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That is definitely one way to do it. Your surgeon was able to keep the lower/horizontal scar shorter by adding the vertical scar.
I would have elected to perform a longer horizontal scar, keeping it very low and closing your old umbilical site as a short vertical scar. It would have probably left you with a short scar half way between your umbilicus and the horizontal scar. There are different ways of doing things. Each has it's own pro's and con's. Once your scar fades, you will probably love your results. I always recommend treating your scar to help minimize it.

When a vertical scar is necessary in tummy tuck

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The majority of the time, a low transverse scar in addition to one around the belly button, is all that is needed in tummy tuck. This is easily confirmed by a review of photos on this site and others. The vertical scar may be present in some individuals because of a prior mid-line incision. Also the vertical scar or 'T' incision has been very helpful in those who have lost a large amount of weight in order to tailor and narrow the waist. Your result looks nice so we hope you have no regrets. It is interesting when four surgeons say the same thing.

Best of luck,


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

Vertical Tummy Tuck Scar?

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Although we try to avoid the vertical incision in the abdominoplasty, it is at times necessary.  In review of your photo you have a nice result and fine scar.  In time the scar will improve.  I find the use of Kelocote, a silicone paste is excellent.  Good luck.  Dr Commons

Vertical component for tummytuck sometimes unavoidable

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occasionally such a scar is necessary....and most fade nicely in about 12 months. most of my patients do not want a higher horizontal scar,  which is sometimes an alternative. it looks like you will have a profound improvement after the scars settle....and that is what tummytucks are improvement in abdominal wall laxity for some scars.

Bruce K. Barach, MD
Schenectady Plastic Surgeon
4.6 out of 5 stars 13 reviews

Your surgeon did what was necessary during the surgery to give you the best result he could

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You have very unusual lower abdominal stretching  and minimal stretching above the umbillicus. Your surgeon tried to minimize the transverse incision and he had to make longer vertical incision.

Kamran Khoobehi, MD
New Orleans Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 152 reviews

Inverted T tummy tuck incisions

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It is rare to need this kind of incision but it was perhaps necessary for you because of the lack of significant loose skin above the umbilicus.  The only way to avoid the T would be to have a higher horizontal scar (which most of my patients would prefer so I rarely do a T) or to "float" your umbilicus down (but that would take it too low). 

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.