Can I Get a Tattoo After a Tummy Tuck in NYC? - | Gartner Plastic Surgery

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Can I Get a Tattoo After a Tummy Tuck in NYC?

Tummy Tuck NYC


After a tummy tuck in NYC, many people begin considering scar treatment. In most cases, due to the careful precision and positioning of your abdominoplasty scar, it will be thin and hidden below the underwear line. However, signs of surgery are inevitable, and many people get creative when covering up or camouflaging that tummy line. Have you considered a belly tattoo? If you have, you’re not alone. This artistic trend is growing, and we’re going to highlight a few things you need to know about tattoos after a tummy tuck.

NYC tummy tuck incision placement

Most likely, your plastic surgeon will discuss the length and placement you can expect for your primary incisions. A full tummy tuck in NYC usually involves a small incision surrounding the navel, and a long, horizontal one across the lower abdomen. If you have significant skin laxity, that scar will run from hip to hip. Mini tummy tuck patients often see a shorter line in the same location. Some people have a scar that is visible above their bikini line, and they choose tattoos to create beautiful body art where a surgical mark would be. If the scar is hidden below your underwear band, you might want a tattoo that remains hidden too.

Planning tattoos before tummy tuck

For those patients who know they’ll want body art before they undergo an abdominoplasty, it’s a great idea to plan with the plastic surgeon. That’s because there’s more flexibility for scar placement if it doesn’t need to be as low as possible.

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When will your tummy be ready for a tattoo?

If you’ve booked a tattoo appointment right after surgery, you’ll be advised to postpone it. Many people don’t realize that scars take a full year or more to mature. During the first few months, you’ll see your firm, reddish incision gradually flatten and soften. By roughly 6 months the color starts to fade. Protect the area from sun exposure, so you don’t inadvertently darken your scar. You may use silicone strips or gels to help flatten your scar with your surgeon’s guidance. Irritation and added injury to tissue that is still healing may encourage hypertrophy or keloid characterized by an overgrowth of inflamed scar tissue.

After 12 months you can count on your body art giving predictable results on a completely healed scar. For those who are naturally prone to keloid scars, your surgeon may advise a treatment plan to help reduce the tissue first, or your tattoo artist may incorporate the shape of the scar into the images you choose. Scar tissue behaves differently than normal skin. It doesn’t take or display ink as well and can be unpredictable, so be sure to select an experienced tattoo artist, and preferably one who is familiar with surgical scar tattoos.

Book your consultation with Dr. Michael Gartner

You’re invited to meet with Dr. Gartner for a private consultation to learn more about tummy tuck surgery. He’ll answer your questions, make recommendations and help you plan if you think post-surgical body art could be in your future.


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