What Kind of Scar Can I Expect After a Tummy Tuck?

A woman poses at the gym.

Tummy tuck surgery helps our Sacramento patients slim and tone their waistlines. However, removing excess skin and unwanted fat requires a few extensive incisions. Many of our tummy tuck patients are curious about what kind of scarring they can expect after the procedure. While the treatment results are definitely well worth a scar, the extent depends on a few different factors. 

Scars After a Tummy Tuck

Major body changes, such as pregnancy or major weight loss, can leave a lasting effect on the body. Tummy tuck surgery addresses this problem by tightening loose skin, flattening a tummy bulge, and sculpting excess fat deposits. The procedure uses a long hip-to-hip incision placed just above the bikini line, giving the doctor access to the tissues and muscles underneath. After damaged muscles have been repaired and tissues adjusted, the doctor pulls the remaining skin down tight and cuts away any excess. 

The incision made during surgery will leave a horizontal scar along your lower abdomen. The scar will fade during the months following surgery, but it will never completely disappear. The severity of your scar, however, varies from patient to patient. Your skin type and the surgical technique used can impact your scar’s visibility. 

How to Reduce Tummy Tuck Scars

Scarring is an unavoidable part of tummy tuck surgery, but that doesn’t mean the mark has to be noticeable or distracting. There are many ways you can support your body during healing and reduce the severity of your scarring after treatment. 

Some ways to reduce your tummy tuck scars include:

  • Follow Post-Op Instructions: Listen to any recovery instructions your doctor gives you after surgery. You’ll wear a compression garment for the first 2 weeks after the procedure, which will minimize scarring by reducing tension on the incision. Reducing tension while the skin slowly heals is the best way to reduce scarring.
  • Limit Sun Exposure: UV rays can darken sensitive skin and make your scar more noticeable over time. To prevent this, always apply sunscreen to protect your scar if you’re wearing a low-cut swimsuit. 
  • Apply Silicone Sheets or Gels: An easy way, over-the-counter way to support your skin is to wear silicone sheets or gels. These products serve as a barrier, keep your incision hydrated, and help reduce tension while the skin is healing. 
  • Try Nonsurgical Treatments: If you feel self-conscious about your scar after it has fully healed, there are multiple nonsurgical treatments that can fade its appearance. Microneedling and laser skin procedures are popular options for stimulating new collagen and improving the skin’s overall color and texture.

If you would like to learn more about your best tummy tuck options from plastic surgeons in Sacramento, please request a consultation online. You can also call us at (916) 929-1833 (Sacramento) or (916) 773-5559 (Roseville).

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