Scar Revision Plastic Surgery Virginia


Scar Revision


How long does scar revision surgery take?

Depending on the length and complexity of the scar the surgery can take between 1- 2 hours.


How long is the recovery?

Sutures are removed within a week. most patients resume normal activities within 1-2 days.


What are the risks of the surgery?

Wound separation, infection, bleeding and recurrence of a thick or wide scar are some of the risk.


What type of anesthesia is used?

Most scar revisions are performed under loacal anesthesia in an office setting.


What technique is used?

There are many techniques used in scar revisisons such as w-plasty and  z-plasty.


Is there much discomfort with the surgery?

Discomfort is minimal with scar revision surgery.




The surgical treatment of scars is a procedure frequently performed by plastic surgeons.  Scars are the unavoidable result of injuries, disease, or surgery.  It is impossible to totally remove the presence of a scar, yet plastic surgery may improve the appearance and texture of scars.  There are many different techniques of scar revision surgery.  Other treatments including physical or hand therapy may be needed in addition to surgery.



Alternative forms of treatment consist of not treating the scar condition, injections of cortisone type drugs into the scar, or the use of special compressive garments/devices worn over the scar.  Dermabrasion and other surgical techniques may be used to revise scars.


Risks and potential complications are associated with alternative forms of treatment.



Every surgical procedure involves a certain amount of risk, and it is important that you understand the risks involved.  An individual’s choice to undergo a surgical procedure is based on the comparison of the risk to potential benefit.  Although the majority of patients do not experience these complications, you should discuss each of them with your plastic surgeon to make sure you understand the risks, potential complications, and consequences of the surgical revision of scars. 


Bleeding- It is possible, though unusual, to experience a bleeding episode during or after surgery.  Should post-operative bleeding occur, it may require emergency treatment to drain accumulated blood (hematoma).  Do not take any aspirin or anti-inflammatory medications for ten days before surgery, as this may contribute to a greater risk of bleeding.


Infection- Infection is unusual after surgery.  Should an infection occur, additional treatment including antibiotics or additional surgery may be necessary.


Scarring- All surgery leaves scars, some more visible than others.  Although good wound healing after a surgical procedure is expected, abnormal scars may occur both within the skin and the deeper tissues.  Scars may be unattractive and of different color than the surrounding skin.  Sutures and staples used to close the wound may leave visible marks.  There is the possibility that scars may limit motion and function.  Additional treatments including surgery may be needed to treat abnormal scarring.


Damage to deeper structures- Deeper structures such as nerves, blood vessels and muscles may be damaged during the course of surgery.  The potential for this to occur varies according to where on the body surgery is being performed.  Injury to deeper structures may be temporary or permanent.


Wound disruption- Until wound healing is complete, it is possible to split open the surgical wound where the scar revision was performed.  Wound disruption can produce a poor surgical result.  If this occurs, additional treatment may be necessary.

Patient compliance- Patient compliance with post-operative activity restriction is critical.  Personal and vocational activities that involve the potential for re-injury to the scar revision must be avoided until healing is completed.


Allergic reactions- In rare cases, local allergies to tape, suture material, or topical preparations have been reported.  Systemic reactions which are more serious may result from drugs used during surgery and prescription medicines.  Allergic reactions may require additional treatment.


Surgical anesthesia- Both local and general anesthesia involve risk.  There is the possibility of complications, injury, and even death from all forms of surgical anesthesia or sedation.


Unsatisfactory result- There is the possibility of an unsatisfactory result from the surgery to revise scars.  Surgery may result in unacceptable visible deformities, loss of function, wound disruption, skin death and loss of sensation. You may be disappointed with the results of surgery.



In some situations, it  may not be possible to achieve optimal revision of scarring with a single surgical procedure.  Multiple procedures may be necessary.  Should complications occur, additional surgery or other treatments may be necessary.  Even though risks and complications occur infrequently, the risks cited are the ones that are particularly associated with scar revision surgery.  Other complications and risks can occur but are even more uncommon.  The practice of medicine and surgery is not an exact science.  Although good results are expected, there cannot be any guarantee or warranty expressed or implied on the results that may be obtained.



The cost of surgery involves several charges for the services provided.  The total includes fees charged by your doctor, the cost of surgical supplies, laboratory tests, and possible outpatient hospital charges, depending on where the surgery is performed.  Depending on whether the cost of surgery is covered by an insurance plan, you will be responsible for necessary co-payments, deductibles, and charges not covered.  Additional costs may occur should complications develop from the surgery.  Secondary surgery or hospital day-surgery charges involved with revisionary surgery would also be your responsibility.



Informed-consent documents are used to communicate information about the proposed surgical treatment of a disease or condition along with disclosure of risks and alternative forms of treatment(s).  The informed-consent process attempts to define principles of risk disclosure that should generally meet the needs of most patients in most circumstances. 


However, informed consent documents should not be considered all inclusive in defining other methods of care and risks encountered.  Your plastic surgeon may provide you with additional or different information which is based on all the facts in your particular case and the state of medical knowledge.


Informed-consent documents are not intended to define or serve as the standard of medical care.  Standards of medical care are determined on the basis of all of the facts involved in an individual case and are subject to change as scientific knowledge and technology advance in scar revisions and as practice patterns evolve.