There are probably a hundred questions you want to ask your Surgeon before you have a Tummy Tuck procedure. One of the key questions asked by patients about to have Abdominoplasty Surgery relates to what their “Tummy Tuck scars” will look like after surgery.
This Plastic Surgery Blog specifically discusses types of scar treatments you can get from Coco Ruby in Melbourne to deal with your Tummy Tuck scars.
- Note that your initial scar management treatments at Coco Ruby are usually included in your Plastic Surgery Procedure Quote from our leading Melbourne Surgeons.
- Your Plastic Surgeon’s recommendations may include visiting with our Dermal Clinicians either before AND/OR after your Tummy Tuck, for best-practice skin preparation and scar management strategies to help you with your scars.
- The Coco Ruby team also performs cosmetic injections and lip fillers, should you feel like freshening up your facial appearance around the same time you have a Tummy Tuck procedure.
Your Tummy Tuck Surgery Scar – Treating Your Abdominoplasty Incision Lines
The Specialist Plastic Surgeons at Cosmetic Surgery for Women & Me are dedicated to reducing the visibility of incision lines after surgery, whenever possible, to help you have less visible scars.
As with all cosmetic or reconstructive plastic surgery, you will have a visible scar after surgery. The question then becomes, how much can you help it to heal in the best way possible, or reduce your risks of unsightly scarring?
- Scars vary in visibility and how much they fade.
- Your healing capacities, recovery processes, genetics, skin tone/skin melanin, and other factors will influence the visibility of your scar; but you WILL have a visible scar after a Tummy Tuck or other big surgery involving excess skin reduction/removal and body contouring (including thigh lift surgery and arm lift surgery).
The best questions to ask your Specialist Plastic Surgeon about your Abdominal scars include:
Where will my tummy tuck scar be located?
- Your scar(s) after a tummy tuck will typically be located in your lower abdomen area, above your pubis and below your belly button.
- Scars may run horizontally (curved or potentially zigzagged rather than straight) across your lower abdomen, and are usually – but not always – positioned below your belt-line or waist-line area.
- You may also end up with a vertical scar, potentially from your pubis area to your navel location, depending on which type of Tummy Tuck surgery you require.
- There are different types of Tummy Tucks including full abdominoplasty or mini-tummy-tuck – Find out more by requesting a consultation to discover which type of Abdominoplasty will best suit your specific needs and skin condition.
What shape will the Tummy Tuck scar be in – straight, curved, zigzag or squiggly?
- What shape or dimensions your scar takes as you heal depends NOT ONLY on where the incision line was placed for your procedure, but how your incision line healed.
- Some aspects of scarring are controllable and some are not; remember, every patient’s surgery and healing journey is unique.
Also, if you smoke, if you get an infection or you try to do too much, too soon after surgery, you can stretch your scars or worsen them.
If so, your scar(s) after a Tummy Tuck procedure may appear more prominent (so DO follow your Surgeon’s instructions and the Post-Op Guide – as prescribed by your Surgeon – carefully; and ASK your Surgeon before resuming strenuous activities including driving, housework, lifting and the gym).
The Shape, Length and Width Dimensions of Tummy Tuck Scars Vary from Patient to Patient
- Your tummy tuck scar may look like a long squiggly line or like an inverted T shape or anchor shape.
- Your abdominal area scar(s) may also appear to be different on your left size versus your right side (just as your body is typically asymmetrical on each side; e.g., if you favour using one hand or leg over the other hand or leg, one usually becomes more muscular or leaner than the other side, albeit typically a small amount).
- For some patients, the incision line needed to get a good tummy tuck operation result needs to extend to the hip area – or even slightly beyond the hip to the lower back area, such as for an Extended Abdominoplasty or Circumferential Abdominoplasty.
- It can vary from patient to patient, so ask your Surgeon during a confidential consultation and get the answers that are right for you. Phone us today on (03) 8849 1444 to get started choosing which of our Team of Surgeons is going to be best to meet with about your surgery procedure, depending on what you need, your surgery timing and surgery planning preferences, and communication style; and whether or not you are going to need multiple procedures or combined procedures performed to get the body contours you’re wanting to attain.
Which Surgeon should I choose for my Tummy Tuck?
Keep reading below…but first, do you know the difference between a Cosmetic Surgeon versus a Specialist Plastic Surgeon? Find out what they are.
How long will the scar be after a Tummy Tuck procedure?
- The scar will be as long as it needs to be to get you a good result from your Tummy Tuck.
- It typically runs from hip to hip or slightly beyond, between the pubis area and the navel.
- There may also be a vertical scar and your navel may be re-aligned to suit your new contours.
- You may also have a scar around your navel, although for some patients, it may not be as visible as your other Tummy Tuck scar(s). That’s because the incision lines for navel surgery performed as part of a Tummy Tuck may be strategically placed to fall inside the navel area; but it can vary significantly from patient to patient.
Can I hide my tummy tuck scar under a swimsuit or other clothing including underwear?
It really depends, and there will be some variability from patient to patient.
However, frequently (but not always), your Abdominoplasty surgery scar can be hidden with a swimsuit bottom or a pair of underwear, or below the belt-line of your jeans.
A Fleur De Lis Abdominoplasty may also, however, involve a vertical incision line from the navel area downwards.
Ask your Surgeon which type of Tummy Tuck is best for what you’re wanting to accomplish, and what you’re starting with (a standard Tummy Tuck, a mini-Tummy Tuck, an Extended or Circumferential Tummy Tuck, or a Fleur De Lis Tummy Tuck).
What’s the best way to treat a scar after having a Tummy Tuck operation?
- We cover these further below in this blog, under Scar Treatment Types for Tummy Tuck Surgery.
What if I get a keloid scar after a Tummy Tuck/Abdominoplasty?
- If you are prone to Keloid scarring or have a complication with your incision line, your surgery scar may appear raised or bumpy looking.
- If you have a tendency to have raised or red and purple looking scars, let your Surgeon know in advance.
- You’ll be treated by our Dermal Clinicians who may suggest a variety of modalities to assist you in reducing the appearance of the scar (but as with all body and breast surgeries and most facial procedures, other than perhaps a closed rhinoplasty procedure, you will have a visible scar).
How does your Surgeon decide where your abdominoplasty scar (Tummy Tuck scar) will be located?
- The scar for any plastic surgery procedure is always where the incision line needs to be in order for your Surgeon to aim to get you a great result.
- The same holds true for body contouring after weight loss or pregnancy, such as removal of the abdominal apron, excess abdominal fat and drooping belly skin through what’s called a Tummy Tuck (Abdominoplasty) procedure.
Your Surgeon will use precision surgical planning, complex surgical techniques and strategic incision line placement strategies.
These surgery decisions are informed by numerous factors. These might include:
- how much excess skin you have in your abdominal area
- your level of body fat or your BMI
- where the body fat or excess skin has accumulated in the abdominal area
- whether you have an abdominal hernia or diastasis recti (torn abs after pregnancy)
- whether or not liposuction is also being used for extra waistline shaping
- other factors your Surgeon will dicuss
Remember, too, that where you are starting from – in terms of your abdomen and skin – will greatly impact your surgery results from Abdominoplasty procedures.
Not all Surgeons offer state-of-the-art scar treatments after a Tummy Tuck surgery in Melbourne or Sydney.
As part of our Surgeons’ dedication to getting patients outstanding surgery results for body, face and breast procedures including Tummy Tuck Surgery, they offer scar treatments to minimise your Abdominoplasty scar.
- Fortunately, at Cosmetic Surgery for Women and Men, our Melbourne Surgeons aim to get you the minimal scar possible whilst aiming to help you get a great body contouring or tummy tuck result (the ‘flatter tummy’ look).
- Our highly skilled Plastic Surgeons work alongside Dermal Clinicians who excel at managing scars after having a Tummy Tuck procedure.
Treatments for scar management use some of the best available equipment in Australia for minimising scar visibility, from Fraxel laser scar treatments to DermaPen skin needling treatments to Laser Genesis or IPL.
Please note: Scar management strategies may NOT be needed for all patients or for all cosmetic surgery procedures.
- However, scar treatments are often recommended by your Plastic Surgeon for some body contouring procedures such as Breast Reduction, Tummy Tuck Surgery, Thigh Lift/Thigh Reduction Surgery or Arm Lift/Arm Fat Reduction Surgery (Brachioplasty).
Scar management strategies may be highly recommended by your Specialist Plastic Surgeon in Melbourne; several treatments may be required and it can take up to 2 years to see the final scar results after having a Tummy Tuck procedure.
Tummy Tuck Scar treatments and certain skin products can sometimes help to minimise your surgical scars over time.
- When possible, incisions are typically made in areas where they are less likely to be clearly noticeable.
- Even so, there may be certain things that can be done to help the scar heal better (meaning, less visible or less noticeable over time).
Our team of Dermal Clinicians at Coco Ruby Skin & Anti-Ageing use the latest Incision Line Minimisation technology and scar management treatments.
These are included in the cost of most body contouring and facial surgery procedures at Cosmetic Surgery for Women & Men.
Depending on your chosen procedure and scar formation and healing processes, there are a number of scar treatments available to you following your surgery, should this be recommended by your Plastic Surgeon.
- A scar consultation with a Dermal Clinician helps your team work out your best scar treatment options
- You’ll tend to get a minimum of 3 scar treatments tailored to suit your scar and/or skin type
- Several of these are included with your Price Quote for Plastic Surgery (Melbourne)
- Ask your Surgeon for details during a consultation or pre-surgery planning discussion.
Hayley, one of the leading Dermal Clinicians at Coco Ruby in Melbourne, says that for some patients, multi-modality treatments may be best for your scar as your incision line is healing. Incision lines (scars) can take a year or longer to heal – sometimes up to 2 years).
Types of Tummy Tuck Scar Treatments at Coco Ruby that might be recommended for you:
- Healite II treatments (if recommended, you might get Healite II within 2 to 4 weeks post-operation; if you choose to purchase a LightStim, you can start this 2 weeks post-op).
- Fraxel Laser (usually instigated between 8 and 12 weeks after your surgery, some variability)
- DermaPen (usually instigated between 10 and 12 weeks after your surgery, some variability)
- Laser Genesis (less-invasive laser treatment, helps with collagen remodeling and may be beneficial for scars that are red and a bit thickened, hypertrophic scars)
- Intense Pulsed Light (IPL treatments) – if your scar is pink and a bit pigmented
- Rapid Recovery Pack – check your Post-Op Guide for which oil(s) might be appropriate for your scars and ask your Surgeon and your Dermal Clinician WHEN you can use this (as fresh incision lines/fresh scars need to be cared for in a particular manner, that your Surgeon will advise you on).
Warning: Don’t put anything on your incision line that your Surgeon has not approved!
Other ways you can help minimise your treat your scar after a Tummy Tuck (Optional – NOT included in your Quote)
Optional purchases you can decide to make to treat a scar include:
- LightStim – a take home LED device that helps you heal and minimises your scar ($289 including GST) – you can purchase from Coco Ruby Skin & Anti-Ageing.
- Strataderm – Silicone Gel
- If you have a raised scar, get the Silicone Strips (Mepiform)
- Silica Sheets (Cicacare Silicone Sheets)
- Topical skin lightening products prescribed by a Doctor and purchased from a Compounding Pharmacist
What to know about your SCAR as it heals: Surgeon Recommendations
- Like most scars, any scars that result after your operation will pass through several phases of healing.
- If you’re caring for your scars properly, you will tend to notice a gradual improvement and reduction in visibility over time.
- If you have concerns, make an appointment with your Surgery team.
Once your scars have settled somewhat (after 8 to 12 weeks), you’ll meet with the Coco Ruby team for treatments if recommended by your Plastic Surgeon.
- Once your treated scars have fully matured, which can take at least a year and sometimes up to 2 years after surgery, you may decide to have a scar revision consultation or additional scar treatments with one of our Dermal Clinicians at Coco Ruby Skin & Anti-Ageing.
This consultation helps you determine the best skin and scar treatment options to assist with your scar healing and help you aim for a reduced visibility of the scar.
Questions about your cosmetic or plastic surgery scars and how to minimise them?
If you’ve already had surgery, here or elsewhere, phone our Coco Ruby team on (03) 8849 1444 and arrange a skin care consultation or scar management discussion with the Coco Ruby Dermal Team – Hayley, Julia and Sarah look forward to seeing you at the Hawthorn East Clinic.
If you haven’t had your Tummy Tuck surgery yet, phone (03) 8849 1444 or send an enquiry to arrange an appointment with one of Melbourne’s leading experts for Tummy Tuck Surgery and Scar Management.
More on skin care and scar management at Coco Ruby’s Skin Care & Anti-Ageing Injection blog.
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Heard about the Vaginal Laser treatment known as Mona Lisa Touch?
Your choice of several of Melbourne’s most experienced Plastic Surgeons for Tummy Tucks including:
Dr Craig Rubinstein – Plastic and Cosmetic Surgeon
Dr Douglas McManamny – Plastic and Cosmetic Surgeon
Dr Rebecca Wyten – Plastic and Cosmetic Surgeon
Dr Richard Maxwell – Plastic and Cosmetic Surgeon
Dr Geoff Barnett – Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon
Dr Richard Sackelariou – Sydney & Melbourne Plastic and Reconstructive Surgeon