Scar Treatments/Caesarean Section (C-section) scars

A range of invasive and non-invasive options to improve the appearance of
C-section scars

Caesarean sections (C-sections) are a popular and safe method of giving birth and occur either as a result of an emergency, or as a planned elective procedure.

Whilst the obstetric surgeon carrying out the C-section will seek to ensure the horizontal scar is as low and inconspicuous as possible, most scars can still be seen, particularly when wearing a bikini or certain types of underwear. Depending on the position of the baby, C-section scars can also be made vertically just below the belly button.

The appearance of the C-section scar following childbirth can differ depending on a range of factors including genetics, skin condition, and an individual’s healing potential. Scarring can often be red, raised and feel uncomfortable. For some women, having a C-section scar leaves them self-conscious, emotionally distressed, cautious and in discomfort.

What options are there to
reduce C-section scars?

At The London Scar Clinic there are a range of invasive and non-invasive techniques available to improve the appearance of C-section scars. During the initial consultation, the consultant will explore the various options available and ensure you have all the information needed to make the right choice. Each patient will receive a personalised treatment plan meeting their unique requirements in order to ensure the best possible outcomes for scar reduction and skin health.

Silicone treatments include gels and sheets are seen as an effective first step to improve a C-section scar. They can be used as soon as the wound has healed and aim to keep the scar area well hydrated to reduce scar production and adverse symptoms. Silicone treatments are a longer term solution compared to other options available and need to be used for a number of months to have an effect. Silicone may be used before or in combination with other treatments.

Scar massage is a non-invasive, gentle method that has the potential to lessen the visibility of scars and improve how the scar feels and functions. Scar massage helps reduce scar tissue accumulation and improve the pliability or flexibility of the scar. Scar massage is most effective when done regularly over a period of time, such as 6 sessions.

LPG (Endermologie) is a non-invasive treatment that can be used to successfully reduce C-section scarring. LPG is a mechanical device that massages the scar and effectively breaks down the scar tissue and improves lymphatic flow and healing. LPG is especially useful in enhancing the flexibility (pliability) of the scar area.

Radiofrequency Microneedling is a minimally invasive treatment that can be effective in improving the appearance of C-section scars for all skin types. Collagen production is stimulated by tiny punctures made by fine needles. By focusing on deeper layers, radiofrequency (RF) energy encourages greater collagen synthesis and scar remodelling. Both superficial and deep scar tissue are successfully treated with this combination treatment. Patients usually see noticeable changes in scar texture and tone after three sessions.

Scar Revision is an invasive procedure often chosen where the C-section scar has not settled or the scar is highly visible. There may be lumpiness, redness and areas of the skin may appear indented. Scar revision surgery removes the original C-section scar and the new incision is then closed and healed under less tension than experienced immediately after birth. The result can be a thinner, less visible scar.

Laser therapy is alternative procedure to improve the appearance of a C-section scar. Examples of lasers available include the:

– Lumenis UltraPulse® CO2 Laser: The UltraPulse CO2 laser is considered the ‘gold standard’. The laser inflicts a controlled injury pattern to the skin, which subsequently encourages the skin to remodel collagen which enhances the appearance of the skin whilst reducing obvious scarring. The CO2 laser can be used on most skin types.

– Lumenis M22™ IPL Laser: The M22 IPL (abbreviation of Intense Pulsed Light) laser works by creating beams of light with a range of different wavelengths. This type of light-based device can help combat many different skin concerns such as pigmentation and redness of the skin. The IPL laser is particularly effective for patients with Caucasian to light Mediterranean skin types.

– Lumenis M22™ ResurFX Laser: The M22 ResurFX laser is a resurfacing treatment using an erbium fibre technology which produces small open channels in the skin and stimulates a wound healing response. It is a popular treatment for scar related concerns and improve fine lines too. The M22 laser can be used on all skin types.

The London Scar Clinic has a large range of lasers available and during the consultation, the consultant will explain which laser is the most suitable option, depending upon your skin type and the type of scar.

By having the C-section scar treated, the aim is to improve the appearance of the scar, whilst seeking to reduce any redness, pain and discomfort that may be experienced. C-section scars may be raised and rigid, and treatments can reduce this too.

Advice on how to best care for your new scar and prevent problems can start as soon as you feel ready to attend for a consultation, some treatments can be started immediately and others may start later.

For non-invasive treatments (for example scar massage), there may be some mild discomfort during the treatment but mostly these treatments bring a feeling of relief. For minimally invasive treatments (such as laser therapy), local anaesthetic cream may be used so there should be minimal discomfort during the procedure and again, pain medication can be used post-procedurally if required.

If you require a C-section operation in the future, the obstetric surgeon will be able to cut on, or near, to the site of the original scar.

The cost to treat your C-section scar will depend on which treatment you decide to have and the size of the area to be treated. Following your initial consultation with the consultant, you will receive a quotation detailing the personalised treatment plan to ensure the best possible outcome for scar reduction and skin health.

Treatment Overview

  • Improve physical appearance and mental well-being
  • Comprehensive range of treatments available including scar massage, scar revision and laser based surgical treatments
  • Invasive and non-invasive options available
  • Unique treatment pathway tailored to specific needs
  • The cost of treatment will vary for each patient
  • Initial consultation with an expert consultant will help to determine the best options

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