How Can I Find A Plastic Surgeon That Does Z-Plasty Scar Revisions?

Q: Hi, I am trying to find an expert z plasty surgeon and I was wondering if you could help? Thank you.

A: Z-plasty is a common plastic surgery technique that is used to improve the functional and cosmetic appearance of scars. It has a long history of use in plastic surgery and is one of the original scar revision procedures.  It can lengthen a contracted scar or change the direction of a scar’s tension line. It is conceptually done  by initially drawing the he middle line of the Z-shaped incision along the line of greatest tension or contraction. Triangular-shaped flaps are then  raised on opposite sides of the two ends and then switched or transposed. The transposition of these two triangular  skin flaps creates the classic Z shape  of the final scar lines. The angles at which the triangular flaps are cut will determine how much the scar is really lengthened. The traditional 60° angle Z-plasty will give a theoretical lengthening of the central limb of 75%. Different angles of the flaps will give variable amounts of lengthening. While the mathematics of these flap angles are interesting, the most important thing is that the z-plasty will always lengthen a scar. Single or multiple z-plasties can also be used in a variety of clever ways for longer scar problems.

The use of z-plasty scar revision and contracture releases is very common and every plastic surgeon is trained and knows how to use them. Therefore, ‘expert z-plasty’ surgeons would be any board-certified plastic surgeon in your local or regional community.  

Dr. Barry Eppley

Indianapolis Indiana