My Scars Before and After Skin Graft Surgery

As I type this I can’t believe how far I’ve come. Up until now I would have never shared my scars with anyone, let alone posted publicly about them. I’ve learned how to accept my scars and move on throughout the years. The reason I’m sharing my journey, thoughts, feelings, and pictures of my scars is to help others deal with their scars.

What helped me most to achieve acceptance of my scars was having skin graft surgery. This surgery helped improve the appearance of my scars, but it didn’t erase my scars. It made them appear less visible and more acceptable, to me and to society. At the end of the day what’s most important is how you feel. And if you can do what makes you feel better and more confident, then it’s definitely worth it. Give yourself the best chance at living your best life.

Photos of Scars Before and After Skin Graft Surgery

My scars before the skin graft surgery and two years after:

skin graft surgery for self harm scars

These scars look devastating, but what is far more tragic is what they remind me of. They carry a certain pain and sadness and are from a time that is far gone. My life is very different now and carrying a visual reminder makes it much harder to enjoy and live my life to the fullest. I always see it this way: If you can do something about it and it will make your life better – go for it.

Change the things that you can and accept those you can’t. Your past will always be a part of who you are, but it doesn’t have to determine your present and future.

The scars on my arm after the Dermabrasion and Thin Skin Grafting surgery look much more blended into my regular skin. They are camouflaged so it is difficult to distinguish every single scar. It looks more like one big scar.

self harm scars after skin graft surgery
24 months after the skin graft surgery

While it took a lot of courage, patience, self-care, and recovery time to go through the skin graft surgery, it was so worth it. The hardest part of this surgery is that I now have another scar on my thigh. This is where they harvested my upper skin layer in order to create the skin graft for the arm. You can see pictures of the scar from the skin graft donor area. For most people, the thigh area is the best area to harvest the skin.

However, this is a trade-off I was ready to make and I mentally prepared myself in advance. Today I feel better, and more confident, and am already planning to do activities that I avoided before.

Life After Skin Graft Surgery

Even though I am not yet finished with the process of camouflaging my scars I already feel much more hopeful and relaxed. After undergoing a skin graft surgery I don’t worry so much about my appearance as before. Two years after the surgery the results are amazing and my scars look completely different now.

The freedom of not having to deal with judgments and assumptions that society places on scars on a daily basis will soon be here. And knowing that makes it so much easier to breathe.

I am incredibly happy to have found this particular surgeon and his specific technique called Thin Skin Grafting. If you would like to read more about how it feels living with scars and the step-by-step process of how I went through this breakthrough surgery, you can purchase my ebook here.

living with scars book

If you or your loved one struggles with scars, you can read about what you shouldn’t say to someone who has scars. Furthermore, there are books and movies on the topic of scars, these offer more insight into living with scars.

My wish for you is to find your peace – with whatever you decide is right for you.

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To read more on the topic of how to manage scars and what living with scars feels like:


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