After your surgery, there are several ways to optimize the appearance of your surgical scar. As always, talk to your plastic surgeon first- he or she is able to examine you in person, and is able to give you the best advice.
Excellent care after surgery is crucial to getting a beautiful scar. This includes taking antibiotics by mouth as directed, using antibiotic cream on the incision as directed, and by following the instructions of your plastic surgeon.
Following instructions and taking a pro-active stance towards wound care is key in getting the looking scar possible. There may be several techniques in caring for wounds that you may not be aware of, and your plastic surgeon may be able to give you some.
You will most likely eventually have to take over the wound care of your surgical scar, and wash, dress, and change your wound on a routine basis. Now is not the time to feel queasy- unless you have a loved one who’s a nurse, you will probably have to take responsibility and care for your wound.
Please realize that scars take 6-12 months to fully heal and mature. Scars form pretty quickly to form new skin, but underneath the surface, it will take 6- 12 months for the scar tissue to finalize healing. During this maturation phase, your scar may change color, thickness, width, or itchiness. You should be aware of this and monitor your scar as needed. If you notice a dramatic change or you’re not happy with the way your scar looks, then you should talk to your plastic surgeon about it.
Once you have all new skin form over your scar, it’s important to protect it from the sun. Rays from sunlight may cause your scar to become more red, thicker, wider, or darker. You should try to protect your scar for 6-12 months after your procedure.
Don’t be grumpy or despair if your scar isn’t looking quite right within the first 6-12 months after your procedure. Scar tissue responds very nicely to non-surgical options within the first 6-12 months after your surgery. If you only see your plastic surgeon after 12 months from your operation, there is usually not much to do except revise the scar- to physically cut out the scar tissue and start over again. In my opinion, non-surgical treatment options should be tried first to make your scar look better.
Talk to your Plastic Surgeon, because in the end, most plastic surgeons take great pride in their work, and want to give you the best result possible. Open and honest communication will prevent any misunderstandings that may give you a less than optimal appearing scar.
Should you desire more information about my available services, or want to schedule an appointment, please contact my Patient Care Coordinator at firstname.lastname@example.org, or call our office at 415-362-1846.
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