Does the 'muscle stitch' in a tummy tuck ever unravel?

How does it STAY stitched up?

Doctor Answers 6

Tummy tuck muscle suture

  • The muscle repair of the tummy tuck can break or unravel,
  • This is rare.
  • Your healing has 70% of its final strength after 2 weeks,
  • 90% after 6 weeks.
  • After that, the suture has done its work - your body is holding itself together on its own. Best wishes.

Does the 'muscle stitch' in a tummy tuck ever unravel?

Yes, it is possible that the suture used to repair the muscles could unravel, but it's quite rare. And as long as it lasts for 8 weeks or so it really doesn't matter because the muscles will have healed together by that time.

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

Deep layer tightening or fascial tightening stitches in tummy tuck

It is very rare for sutures to unravel, although it does happen, especially if patients are too active before the layers have fused.

We are now using non-dissolving sutures but many fine doctors use permanent sutures

Occasionally, patients believe that sutures have broken because their abdomens are not as flat as they had expected.

We always caution patients that we are only tightening their existing deep layer (fascia), not replacing it with one that has never seen a pregnancy, weight loss, etc., so while the bulge is always better, it may not be completely flat.

Brent Moelleken, MD
Beverly Hills Plastic Surgeon
4.9 out of 5 stars 134 reviews

Tummy tuck muscle repair only rarely would fail.

Yours is not an uncommon question for women and men considering this operation. In much the same way that other abdominal surgery is performed, the deep layer suturing tends to hold up just fine. Many surgeons use permanent sutures. Some of us use slowly dissolving sutures and see no higher incidence of this repair failing. Sutures simply bring the tissues back together where then heal in this improved and tighter location. Being in good health and near your ideal body weight before surgery reduces the risk of muscle tightening repair failures. There are higher risk situations that a Plastic Surgeon would be able to discuss with you during a consultation.

Dr. Mosher

Mathew C. Mosher, MD
Vancouver Plastic Surgeon
4.7 out of 5 stars 32 reviews

Does the 'muscle stitch' in a tummy tuck ever unravel?

It can I suppose, but I have not seen it despite performing hundreds of tummy tucks each year.

Find a board certified plastic surgeon who performs hundreds of tummy tucks and body contouring procedures each year. Then look at the plastic surgeon's website before and after photo galleries to get a sense of who can deliver the results.

Kenneth Hughes, MD

Los Angeles, CA

Tummy tuck muscle stitch only rarely fails

Thank you for your question.  It is very unusual for a tummy tuck muscle stitch to unravel or fail.  The most important thing is to find a plastic surgeon who is certified by the American Board of Plastic Surgery, experienced in tummy tuck surgery and who has an excellent reputation in your community.  It is important not to do sit ups or other abdominal strengthening exercises for 6-8 weeks after surgery.

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.