What Will My Scars Look Like After a Tummy Tuck?

Woman in a Kitchen Slicing Food

A tummy tuck is a popular cosmetic plastic surgery procedure that can help you reach your goal of a smoother, flatter stomach. When performed by a trained, experienced surgeon, you should achieve your desired results. However, you will see scars after a tummy tuck.

Abdominoplasty provides patients with a quick, sure way to eliminate the stubborn belly fat and excess skin that does not disappear through diet and exercise. A tummy tuck is the only way to achieve a smooth belly once skin and muscles have stretched past the point of no return. If you are wondering what your scars will look like after a tummy tuck, Dr. Layton could address your questions and concerns.

What are the Determining Factors for Scarring after a Tummy Tuck?

The type of tummy tuck is the primary factor that determines scarring. A full tummy tuck involves a long incision, from hip to hip, along the bikini line. Additional incisions, called T-shaped or anchor-shaped, may be made toward and around the navel.

A mini tummy tuck requires a six-to-twelve-inch incision – much shorter than a full tuck – placed just above the pubis. Picture a typical C-section incision. Therefore, less scarring is evident with a mini tummy tuck.

The shape of the patient’s body contributes to the scarring left behind. Not all tummy tuck scars look identical on the left and right sides of the abdomen. If the patient’s body is asymmetrical, uneven scarring may appear.

It is imperative to choose a board-certified plastic surgeon who has extensive experience performing tummy tuck surgeries. Dr. Layton could make incisions that become unnoticeable when you wear a bikini. Before-and-after photos provide a detailed look at the tummy tuck results of our cosmetic plastic surgery practice. Viewing these images is vital to set realistic expectations for surgery scars.

You need to discuss your history of scarring with Dr. Layton before your tummy tuck procedure. Genetics helps determine how a person heals, including the degree to which they scar after surgery. If you get keloid scarring, the cosmetic surgery team can refer to dermal specialists for non-invasive, post-op treatment.

Skin tone plays a role in the appearance and disappearance of scarring. Patients with deeper skin tones generally have darker scars that take a little longer to lighten. Fair-skinned patients tend to see their scars fade more quickly.

Abdominoplasty scars can also be minimized by following a detailed set of wound care instructions provided to the patient by the plastic surgeon. Standard scar care routines include:

  • Keeping the area clean to prevent infection
  • Applying a topical scar cream
  • Moisturizing
  • Avoiding prolonged sun exposure
  • Avoiding rough clothing that irritates the skin

How Long Does Tummy Tuck Scarring Last?

Scars are inevitable with all surgeries, no matter the technique, surgeon, or post-surgery routine. Like most people, you want to know how long your scars will last after a tummy tuck.

At three months, your wounds should heal and be scab-free, and at six months, your scars should begin to fade. Beyond a year, your scars should continue to fade and become almost invisible after five years.

Tummy Tuck: Expect Scars but Enjoy the Results

Nothing can prevent scarring – not even genetics. Fortunately, you can still achieve the tight, flat stomach you want, even with a little bit of scarring. Call now to arrange a consultation with Dr. Layton and learn more about your options.

Tummy Tuck vs. Mini Tummy Tuck

Person touching her stomach

Are you insecure about the weight you carry in your stomach? Do you struggle to lose weight in your midsection even after working out or dieting? Have you been thinking about getting plastic surgery, such as a tummy tuck?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, you have two options to remove fat from your midsection: a full tummy tuck or a mini tummy tuck.

You should decide which tummy tuck version is correct for you before moving forward with plastic surgery.

A tummy tuck (abdominoplasty) is a cosmetic plastic surgery option for patients who wish to flatten their abdominal region. During the procedure, a trained plastic surgeon will remove excess skin and fat and restore abdominal muscles that have been stretched and loosened over time.

Do You Want a Flatter Stomach in Less Time?

Diet and exercise alone cannot give you a smooth, flat belly. Age, genetics, pregnancy, and weight changes cause the abdominal area to stretch and sag. Patients may opt for a tummy tuck to see quicker results and feel better about their bodies.

You should not view abdominoplasty as a substitute for regular exercise and healthy eating. Instead, it supplements a whole-body regimen aimed at looking good and feeling well. Discuss your body goals with a board-certified tummy tuck surgeon like Dr. Layton to determine if you need a full tummy tuck or a mini tummy tuck. Let’s look at the differences.

Full Tummy Tuck

In a full tummy tuck, the surgeon makes a lengthy incision that extends along the bikini line from hip to hip. The surgical team may make another, smaller incision around the navel to remove excess tissues from the upper abdomen. The surgeon then repairs the loose or separated abdominal muscles with the abdominal skin lifted. Excess skin and fat get trimmed, the skin pulled tight, and a new belly button is created. The surgeon closes the incisions with sutures, staples, adhesives, or tapes.

The full tummy tuck is ideal for anyone with larger areas of need in the lower and middle abdomen. Simply put, if the skin above your belly button is loose and your ab muscles have been permanently stretched out, you are a good candidate for a full tummy tuck.

Mini Tummy Tuck

A mini tummy tuck focuses on the part of the abdomen below the belly button. It is a more targeted, less invasive procedure in which the surgeon creates a single incision above the groin, below the bikini line. The incision is significantly shorter than what is made during a full tummy tuck because the area of correction is much smaller. The surgeon resects loose skin located in the lower abdomen and the remaining skin is pulled tight and flat before the incisions are closed.

The mini tummy tuck is ideal for anyone who stays in decent shape but has a tough time losing weight in the area below the navel. In a nutshell, you are a good candidate for the mini tummy tuck if you have toned upper body muscles, maintain a near-ideal weight for your height, and are in good health.

Recovery Period Lengths

A full tummy tuck is a more invasive surgery than a mini tummy tuck. Therefore, you can expect two to three weeks of bed rest as part of your two-month total recovery time.

In comparison, you can return to work within one week after your mini tummy tuck surgery. Full recovery from a mini tummy tuck should occur within three weeks to a month.

Mini tummy tucks will leave less scarring, but it is critical to your overall health and recovery to choose an experienced and board-certified plastic surgeon for any cosmetic procedure.

Change Your Body By Scheduling a Tummy Tuck Today

If you want to get rid of excess weight around your belly and get the flat stomach of your dreams, call us today. Dr. Layton is an experienced surgeon who takes pride in using the most current plastic surgery techniques. If you are unsure whether a mini tummy tuck or a full tummy tuck is right for you, schedule a consultation with us as soon as possible.