Weight loss surgery changes a lot of things—including your skin. If you are planning a sleeve gastrectomy in Phoenix, you are likely curious about what you will look like once the procedure is complete. Specifically, what those scars are going to be like.
The bad news? There will be scars. The good news? They are usually very small and fade well. Let’s dive into other things to know about scars after gastric sleeve surgery.
Types of Gastric Sleeve Incisions
The appearance of your scars is heavily impacted by the type of surgery you get and the incisions they use. There are three primary types of gastric sleeve incisions:
- Standard Laparoscopic: This is the most common approach to take with weight loss surgery in Phoenix, gastric sleeve or otherwise. With this, three to five small incisions are made in various parts of the abdomen.
- Single Incision: This is the second most common method for weight loss surgery. A single incision is made in the navel. It is slightly larger than those for standard laparoscopic surgery but less noticeable.
- Open Surgery: This type of incision is rarely used with the gastric sleeve, but it is an option in certain circumstances. This involves a single large incision in the abdomen.
If you are worried about scars from gastric sleeve surgery, talk to your surgeon about your preferences.
Visibility of Sleeve Gastrectomy Scars
The visibility of your scars will depend on which incisions were used and how far out you are from your procedure. With the standard incisions, they are somewhat visible in certain clothing but often fade to the point that they are barely visible.
With the single incision, the scar is typically fully hidden in the navel, leaving nothing visible. However, open surgery leaves a large scar typically able to be seen in any outfit that reveals portions of the abdomen.
How to Minimize Gastric Sleeve Scars
- Avoid exposing the scar to UV rays.
- Apply sunscreen when you do leave the scar open to sunlight.
- Do not pick at the wound or pull off scabs.
- Avoid smoking since it slows healing.
- Keep the wound clean.
- Moisturize the scar once the wound is healed.
- Massage the scar tissue to help break it up