C-sections are one of the most common surgeries, and while most surgery scars are barely noticeable, not all look as nice as you might like. It’s your body, and if you feel as if your scar is too large, discolored, or raised, you can opt to have a c-section scar revision.
Never thought of it before? Did you just assume that you have to live with your ugly, disappointing scar for the rest of your life?
You don’t have to, and that’s freeing for us! After my first c-section, I was left with a scar that was thick and discolored, and I was so unhappy with it. With the help of my next OBGYN and second c-section, my scar was revised, and I couldn’t be happier with the results.
Are you interested in knowing more? Let’s dive right in together!
What Is A C-Section Scar Revision?
This procedure is the removal and revision of an enlarged, discolored, or painful c-section scar. A surgeon obliterates the skin around your scar and with precision. Then, he will suture the wound closed, leaving a thinner and better-looking scar.
Sometimes, doctors perform a tummy tuck at the same time as the scar revision. If you have a depressed vertical c-section, it can be removed, or liposuction can be used to thin the area around to create a better scar.
There are several reasons why you might have a c-section scar revision, including:
- Your c-section scar is wide or thickened more than usual.
- A keloid formed on your scar.
- You have a hypertrophic scar.
- It’s more noticeable than you would prefer.
When Can I Get a Scar Revision?
Most doctors won’t perform a scar revision before six to 12 months after a c-section. Scars do drastically change over time, and your doctor will want to make sure that they won’t turn on their own.
Doctors may want you to try a few other methods before resorting to surgery. In the first year, while you wait for your scar to settle into what it will look like, massage the scar, use vitamin E oil, and topical ointments that contain steroids. You can try different silicone tapes and guards.
Also, if you plan to have more kids, your doctor might recommend that you wait until you’re finished to have a revision. Once you’re finished having kids, you can correct any issues that you have with your scar.
Can My C-Section Scar Be Fixed?
If your c-section scar doesn’t look “good,” then in most cases, it can be fixed. There is a difference between a good scar and one that is bad.
Here’s the difference.
A good, nicely healed c-section scar is flat, thin, and has a color that is similar to your surrounding skin. You shouldn’t have a scar that is painful, itchy, or irritated.
A bad c-section scar is either depressed or elevated and feels hard. The scar is colored, pigmented, itchy, or painful. Sometimes, it has fat accumulation above the scar, creating a ledge or a lip. You might be surprised to know that this is very common.
A ledge happens because, during the procedure, different layers are cut at the same time. Then they fuse or heal together, getting stuck or merged in the deeper muscle layer. That creates a scar that is puckered and unattractive.
Depending on the problem that you have, your doctor will help you pick the right procedure to fix your c-section scar.
What is the Procedure?
It’s always good to talk to your surgeon about the procedure because all doctors do have different techniques and methods. However, there is a generalized method for c-section scar revision, and it looks a bit like this.
You’ll have the procedure completed in a surgery center or operating room. Your doctor will open the incision again and carefully remove parts of the scar that are discolored or too large. He will take his time to ensure precision, reducing the size and look of the scar.
In most cases, this surgery is performed under IV or local sedation. The doctor is only cutting through the top layers of your skin rather than multiple layers as they do in a c-section procedure. If you decide to have another surgery, such as a breast lift, along with the scar revision, you’ll be placed under general anesthesia.
You can expect your surgery to take around two hours, start to finish. The doctor will use dissolvable stitches, so you don’t need to have staples removed. Dissolvable stitches typically lead to the best-looking scar as well.
Perhaps the best thing about a c-section scar revision is that you can go home the same day, and the recovery time is only a week. You don’t want to break open your stitches. If you can survive a c-section, you can survive the recovery for this procedure.
Does Insurance Cover Scar Revision Surgery?
Scar revision surgery isn’t always covered by insurance. Your insurance can cover the removal of the tissue and creating a new scar on a case-by-case basis. It’s more likely that Insurance will cover the procedure if there is a medical problem, such as a keloid, rather than the revision being purely cosmetic.
How Much Does Scar Surgery Cost?
The cost of the scar surgery depends on how large your scar is and how much it needs to be done. Another factor is whether or not your doctor needs to use local or general anesthesia. The cost can range from $1,000 to $3,500. To learn more about the expenses, click here.
As you can see, that’s quite a wide range of estimated costs!
If you need to have a tummy tuck along with a c-section scar revision, you can expect your costs to be much higher because general anesthesia is used. The price for this procedure is around $7,500 to $10,000.
Are you wondering what these costs include? Here are some of what those costs cover.
- Surgeon’s fee
- Surgical facility costs
- Anesthesia fees and costs
- Prescriptions or pain relief
- Medical tests
Do They Cut The Same Scar for a Second C-Section?
If you have a c-section, around 29.1% of women have a c-section again. So, if you want to have another baby, you might wonder what will happen to your first scar.
Whether or not your doctor will use the same scar for a second c-section depends on how thick the scar is. Sometimes, it’s too hard to cut through the scar tissue. However, don’t stress because doctors can remove your previous scar if needed.
In most cases, though, your doctor will be able to use the same scar for your second c-section. When I had my fourth c-section, my doctor told me that she didn’t like the look of my scar and fixed it for me during the procedure. If you’re unhappy with it but want to have another baby, your doctor can help you during your next delivery.
Scar Revision vs. Tummy Tuck – Which is the Best Procedure For Me?
You can have a scar revision without a tummy tuck, but if you have a tummy tuck, the doctor will include a scar revision as a component of the surgery.
At times, if the muscles in your abdomen are separated or you have excess skin, a tummy tuck may be the best choice for you.
There is no perfect one-size-fits-all answer when it comes to whether or not you should have a tummy tuck or not. A tummy tuck removes all of the extra skin and fat, as well as your c-section scar, reducing the appearance of the scar.
Your doctor can take a look at your unique situations, scar, and realistic expectations. He will have the best advice based on your body. What works for one person may not work for another.
Traditional vs. Mini Tummy Tuck – What’s the Difference?
When you make plans with your doctor, he might mention a traditional or mini tummy tuck. You need to be fully informed.
Here’s the deal.
A traditional tummy tuck is when a patient has extra skin and fat above or belly her belly button. All moms know the struggle to get a flat abdomen after having a baby. If that sounds like you and you want a different c-section scar along with a flatter abdominal area, a traditional tummy tuck might be the right one for you!
A mini tummy tuck is a bit different because it removes extra skin and fat below the belly button only. So, if you have fat above it, it won’t be the right choice. Mini tummy tucks are great for women who have an ugly scar, extra fat, and excess skin that won’t go away with proper exercise. This procedure can fix your c-section scar as well.
Making Your Decision
You don’t have to be unhappy with your c-section scar forever. If you find your scar discolored, enlarged, or painful, talk to a surgeon about having a c-section scar revision or even a tummy tuck, depending on your needs. Once you speak to your doctor and have the procedure, you’ll be much happier with your c-section scar.
Your happiness is worth it!
Hey, this is Linda. My biggest accomplishment in life is being a mother of four children. Their current ages range from almost ten years old down to 20 months old.
I’m passionate about writing parenting articles because I understand so well all of the problems and trials you face as a parent. From breastfeeding woes to budgeting problems and behavior problems, along with everything in between, chances are I’ve faced it over the last ten years. Read more about Linda here.