Help! I Have “Dog Ears” After Tummy Tuck Surgery

Tummy Tuck Dog Ear Revision Surgery

A tummy tuck can be a life changing operation – removing handfuls of unsightly belly fat while tightening the abdominal muscles and skin for the smooth, sexy “abs” you have always wanted! But when performed by an inexperienced surgeon – or when rare healing complications occur – the patient can be left with little flaps of skin on either side of the incision that are referred to as “dog ears.”

The good news is that “dog ears” are extremely rare after tummy tuck surgery when the procedure is performed by a skilled plastic surgeon like Dr. Ali at AMAE Plastic Surgery in Birmingham, MI. And even better news is that dog ears resulting from an inexperienced surgeon are usually easily corrected with a second, minor surgery.

What Causes “Dog Ears” After Tummy Tuck Surgery?

A tummy tuck, or abdominoplasty, is a surgical procedure that involves removing excess skin and fat from the abdominal area – and in some cases also tightening the muscles of the abdominal wall. The goal of the procedure is to create a smoother, firmer, and more toned abdomen.

During a tummy tuck surgery, the surgeon will make an incision along the lower abdomen, typically just above the pubic area. The incision may extend from hip to hip, depending on the extent of the surgery. After the incision is made, the skin is separated from the abdominal muscles and excess skin is removed. The abdominal muscles may also be tightened during the procedure. The skin is then pulled down and the excess is trimmed away. The remaining skin is sutured (“stitched”) together to close the incision.

But, sometimes after a tummy tuck surgery, small “dog ears” or triangular-shaped excess skin may remain at the ends of the incision. These are called “dog ears” because they resemble the pointed ears of a dog.

Dog ears can occur when the skin is not evenly pulled or correctly sutured during the procedure by the plastic surgeon. However, they can also occur if the patient had a very significant amount of excess skin or if the patient has poor skin elasticity. Failure to follow post-surgical instructions for aftercare and healing can also result in dog ears – so it is essential to follow the plastic surgeon’s post-operative instructions.

Correcting “Dog Ears” After Tummy Tuck Surgery

Dog ears can usually be corrected by a simple surgical procedure called “dog ear correction surgery”. This procedure involves making a small incision near the dog ear and removing the excess skin. The incision is then closed with sutures (“stitches”).

Dog ear correction surgery is typically performed on an outpatient basis and does not require a hospital stay. It is usually done under local anesthesia, although some patients may choose to have it done under general anesthesia.

It’s important to note that dog ears are considered a normal part of the tummy tuck surgery process and can occur even in the hands of experienced surgeons. If you considering tummy tuck surgery and are concerned about the possibility of dog ears, discuss this with Dr. Ali at Dr. Ali at AMAE Plastic Surgery in Birmingham, MI before your procedure. He can provide you with more information about the likelihood of dog ears occurring in your unique situation and what can be done to minimize the risk.

Recovery After Dog Ear Tummy Tuck Surgery

Recovery after tummy tuck dog ear correction surgery will depend on the extent of the procedure and the individual patient’s healing process. In general, patients can expect some swelling, bruising, and discomfort following the surgery – but far less downtime and discomfort than after the tummy tuck surgery itself.

Most patients are able to return to work and other normal activities within a week. However, it’s important to follow the plastic surgeon’s instructions and avoid strenuous activities or heavy lifting for at least the first few weeks after the surgery. This will help ensure proper healing and prevent any complications.

It’s also important to keep the incision site clean and dry to prevent infection and use any special wound dressings or ointments that Dr. Ali gives you for the incision site.

The final results of the surgery may not be fully visible for several weeks while the swelling and bruising gradually resolve. The plastic surgeon will schedule follow-up appointments to monitor the healing process and ensure that the patient is recovering as expected.

Tummy Tuck Dog Ear Revision Surgery | Birmingham, MI

It’s important to remember that every patient is different and recovery after tummy tuck surgery is different for everyone.  It’s important to follow the plastic surgeon’s instructions and take good care of yourself after the surgery to ensure the best possible outcome – but in some unique cases dog ears are unavoidable after tummy tuck surgery.

However, if this occurs it is easily remedied by a skilled and experienced plastic surgeon like Dr. Ali at AMAE Plastic Surgery in Birmingham, MI. If you are considering tummy tuck surgery, schedule a consultation with Dr. Ali at AMAE Plastic Surgery in Birmingham, MI, and see how you can get the body you’ve always dreamed of!