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British Heart Foundation
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Heart scar

I’m desperate to try anything I can to get rid of my heart scar. I’m using a concealer I bought recently and getting the same issues where my concealer is just a makeup line instead of a scar so ppl can see there’s something I’m hiding. I’ve tried bio oil for years but it didn’t work.

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Sorry to be the bearer of bad tidings, But I do not believe you can ‘get rid’ of a scar. You can conceal it, possibly lighten it, possibly soften it, and it will fade with the passing of time, but it will always be there. If you find something that really does get rid of scars, I think you’ll be on to a winner!

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And nothing covers it well. I just don’t want ppl to see it.

I do know people use tattoos to cover up scars- not something I’d ever consider or recommend, but each to his/her own.

I know this might sound like an odd question, but have you tried talking this through with anyone - a counsellor for example? If it’s been an issue for 30 years it clearly is a big deal for you and talking to someone might help lesson that ‘big deal’


Tried getting help but my family made a complaint saying I need to accept it so I self harm instead cos I hate it that much.

Like stevejb1810 I think perhaps some counselling could help you! It’s all very well others saying you need to accept it, when it’s not about them. Counselling won’t make the scar disappear, a counsellor will listen empathically and unconditionally. Talking things through with you. This can sometimes make things more bearable. Counselling is a very personal and confidential thing and if you feel the need to talk to one that’s your choice and not anyone else’s to say otherwise. Self harm is also something you can talk to them about. I would seek out your local mental health organisation/charity and have a chat with them, also speak to your GP.


So I still stuggle going out as my tee shirts may get pulled down and they see the top part of the scar.

I am sorry if this offends you. But get on with it be happy to be alive. Be proud to have a scar that proves you are a survivor. Thank your god you have a heart that still beats.


That does offend me I shouldn’t have to look different cos I have a heart condition. I’ve just at 32 been told my family isn’t who I thought it was and I grew up the onli one I knew of under 50 with a heart condtion but my whole real family have it yet they look a lot better as they are able to buy and use makeup and I can’t in the uk but they can where they live. I’ve tried my whole life to buy scar covering makeup.

Oh bless you but this isn'tfor your family it's for you. To help you live your life more happily. Please try to go and get help they will make you feel better. X

For my family to make a complaint about it. Hopefully they can’t now I’m an adult.

Scars can be much reduced by laser treatment. Two problems:- a) it will not be cheap and b) there is a slight chance that it will be worse! As Steve said scars fade with time - mine where I had a metal plate inserted after I broke my femur is barely visible now.

Mines 30 years old and it’s aweful. I 4get how many things I’ve tried including bad face make up so ppl don’t see it.

30 years in its worse. I’ve tried so many things but struggled to find something where I can look normal.

I have a scar from the 1950s when heart surgery was in its infancy - you should see the scar on my arm where an exploratory catherisation was done! I’m pretty proud of it now!


My granddaughter is 23 with a heart scar. Having had multiple surgeries hers is still visible, in her early teens she did everything to cover it. Then she accepted it as part of her. She wears fashionable clothes, bikinis etc. Factor 50 in the summer.

I had surgery in January and my scar is barely visible. In my 70s so I rarely have my chest visible. Except if I swim.

Bio oil did work for me.

I know there is special makeup that is available for scars. Ordinary concealer doesn't work very well.

Also skin tattooing sometimes works


Where can I buy makeup to cover scars from? I don’t mind the bottom part but I stuggle wearing normal tees cos of thr top part. I’m finking of putting double sidded tape on the top of my tee shirt so it socks to my body and would prefer makeup

You could have a tattoo that makes it look like a zip!

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Sorry for this! Really!

I didn't realise how bad you felt about it. When I had my CABGs done I went to a support group called "The Zipper Club". That gave me the idea.

Very sorry once again!

No way I’d rather have no life.

Please let me know if you find anything!

I am 22 and had aortic valve replacement 9 weeks ago and want to cover mine if I can.

I do know Doctors can help you get special make up to cover scars so it may be worth speaking to them

I had quite a few scars where I had a reveal device and following that a pacemaker. I am only 45 this year I still get a little apprehensive. I have accepted it and in a couple of years will have to have mine changed for the first time.

Definitely counselling or CBT. Probably harder for a woman, I have stopped wearing bikinis now :-).

Take care and you will get there. Speaking about it with people on here who have been through it.

I agree with the comments above about accepting it and being happy to be alive.

I went on holiday, to Thailand, 5 months after my AVR and double by-pass. I have two scars, one in the middle of my chest and one on my arm where they harvested the by-pass.

Part of the time was spent on dive boats (I can snorkel but will never dive) The only comment I got was from some young London girls who thought I had been caught in something nasty! The look of resignation when I told them was amusing to say the least!

The other " experience" was at a friends birthday meal,again just after the op. Her sister kept staring at the scar on my arm and eventually started to touch it (runs the length of my forearm.

Just when I was about to ask what the heck she was doing she asked if she could take a photo!

I asked her why would she want to do that and she explained that she was a make-up artist working on both TV series and movies.

She wanted it for her work and when I explained how I got both it and the one on my chest she said that if she produced that in her work she would probably get replaced as it would not be considered realistic, hence the photo request!

So my suggestion is if you can't accept except then seek out a good theatre/ film\ special effects make-up artist and ask them to do it and teach you.

Less painful than a tattoo or laser surgery

Good luck, stay happy and enjoy life



I’ve grown up being forced to accept something I hate. I can’t wear normal tees as it comes down so look like a clown instead. Totally not acceptable to be told I can’t be normal cos i was born with a heart condition. Reported this comment.

I am really sorry if I have offended you. that was the last thing i wanted to do

I’m desperate to like a life where the whole world can’t see I have a heart condition

I understand and am sorry that I can't help. Has the BHF not got anything on this matter? I am sure that you are not alone with this frustration. Truly sorry

I seem to be I just found out loads of ppl can buy makeup to sort this and can put it on but like in another country so I have no idea.

I will ask my heart consultant when I see him next. also seeing a friend who has an 8 yr old daughter who has recently had open heart surgery and will ask her what they do.

Will get back to you

Take care

I believe there are special scar foundations for facial scaring. I don't know where you get it but a nurse might be able to tell you. Or good old Google. Good luck

Tried goggle last night.

Why do you hate it so much, and how do you think things would be different if it wasn't there?

I could wear a top that went a tiny bit under my neck.

While I do understand how you're feeling to an extent, there's absolutely no reason why you can't let the world see your scar. It doesn't make you a different person, and people aren't going to think badly of you. Genuinely, what's the worst that will happen if someone sees it?

I will kill myself. I’ve had it wiv the ppl seeing me as different and it’s probably onli 3 difference between me wanting to socialise or not at the moment. I’ve always kept myself to my self cos ppl see the top of my heart scar. Try going ur whole life knowing I look different.

I've had the same scar since I was 7, I get it. I also spent a lot of time giving a sh*t about how people might perceive it but then I realised I was wasting my energy and I decided I was going to be proud of it instead because I didn't see any benefit in holding myself back for other people.

If you saw someone with the same scar, would you think they were undeserving of your time?

I have no worth cos of my scar but someone else is different they don’t get tee shirts pulled down and they already have worth and they can buy makeup to cover it up and be able to use it.

You're not giving yourself enough credit, there's way more to you than a bit of scar tissue. Can I ask how old you are?

32 and hated it my whole life. My real mum remembers me hating it after my 1st op as a baby. I refuse to have a life unless I can cover it up onli like 3 cm I think. Never had a life cos of it and my family I lived wiv wouldn’t let me bring this issue up.

I think you'd really benefit from speaking to a professional about this; it sounds like you've been denied any real processing of this, and of course that is going to affect you heavily. It's like not being allowed to grieve the loss of something important.

A scar isn't something to be ashamed of, and it really shouldn't be controlling your life to this extent, there's so much more important stuff going on in the world.

And you mentioned people pulling your t-shirt down -please get yourself some new friends, what the hell is that!

I’ve been trying to bannish these ppl from my life since I was 18 and they would show up and I was like u ain’t welcome but as u are freinds wiv my family (who I thought my family was) my mum and their mums are all with the same man. There’s been no way for years. I think I now have new friends but can never be sure.

Maybe it's time to start venturing out on your own a bit and trying to surround yourself with some more positive people who can help bring out the best in you. Is it possible for you to get into running or any other kind of sport? Health-wise is that something you'd be able to do?

Not at the mo. I’m walking a lot in the hope of starting to get into a sport. I think surfing not sure.

Surfing! Brilliant, do it! If I lived anywhere near you I'd totally join you. :) Walking is a great start to anything, keep it going.

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I understand how you feel, I tried everything for a keloid scar. After seeing a plastic surgeon I was given dermatix, it reduces the redness and reduces the flattens it. I was 19 when I had my first ohs. Now I couldn't care less who sees it, it has faded alot but its part of me.

I had my 1st open Heart surgery at 11 months so never looked normal

Hi, I ended up with a keloid scar so not too pretty, but then again neither am I ;)

Some days I feel that good it's like the op never took place but the scar is a good reminder of how lucky I've been and the push to keep on with my now healthier life style. Best of luck to you.

Wear it with pride for all this who did not get a 2nd chance I do

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I’ve had no life as I can’t cover it up my whole life growing up I was forced to love my body that I hate.

Have you been to see your gp and explained how you feel?

Wanted to can my go help me?

Hi gal4God,

We'd agree with lots of the responses here from our members - it sounds like you could do with chatting through this with somebody who can give you a bit of support and information, as well as hearing how you feel. Our helpline team are available for just that, so we'd definitely recommend that you get in touch with them: bhf.org.uk/heart-health/how...

Everybody feels differently about their scars, so we understand how you feel about yours. We're going to close this thread now, but we'll also get in touch with you shortly in direct messages for a bit of a chat.

Take care of yourself,

Jo, Team BHF.

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