What to Expect During Your Tummy Tuck Recovery

PLASTIC SURGEON & MEDICAL SPA SERVING BRYN MAWR, VILLANOVA & COMMUNITIES NEAR THE MAIN LINE OF PHILADELPHIA, PA

Posted: January 28, 2019

While a tummy tuck is a life changing procedure, it’s important to understand the recovery after a tummy tuck.  A tummy tuck is a complex surgical procedure, and it will take some time for you to fully heal after surgery.

Dr. Jean will discuss the following information with you in greater detail during your initial consultation, and he will provide you with detailed aftercare instructions. It’s important to follow these instructions closely to facilitate proper healing and ensure best possible results.

Recovery Is Different for All Patients

woman recovering in a hospital bed after tummy tuck surgeryThe timeline for recovery after a tummy tuck varies from patient to patient. There are several factors which impact how rapidly you recover from your procedure, including:

  • Your age
  • Your overall health
  • The extensiveness of your procedure (full tummy tucks take longer to heal than mini tummy tucks)
  • Your body’s innate healing ability

Initial Recovery Phase

You’ll want to give yourself some downtime immediately following your tummy tuck. Most people need to take about two weeks off from work to allow their body time to heal.

During the first few days of your recovery, you should plan on getting plenty of rest. Dr. Jean encourages light walking as soon as you feel like you can handle it. This will help promote blood flow and reduce the risk of blood clots. While you should be out of bed and walking in your home for at lease five minutes every few hours after surgery, you can most likely resume light activity after about a week.

You should expect some mild bruising and swelling after a tummy tuck. This will subside gradually during the first few weeks of your recovery.  You will be given long acting pain medicine at the time of your surgery and will be provided with prescription pain medication to decrease discomfort after surgery.  

You will need to wear a compression garment to help decrease swelling after surgery. You may need to wear this garment for up to six weeks. In addition, Dr. Jean recommends wearing loose-fitting clothing for a few weeks in order to avoid irritation to the incision area.

Dr. Jean takes the following steps in order to ensure your healing goes as smoothly as possible:

  • He uses Silagen® silicone incision strips to reduce the appearance of incision lines, provide moisture to the incision site and stimulate collagen production in the region
  • He uses vitametica recovery support supplements to expedite the healing process and shorten your recovery time

Both of these items are provided at no extra cost when we perform your tummy tuck.

Exercise after a Tummy Tuck

It’s important to be patient after your tummy tuck. While you may want to resume regular workouts as soon as possible, you will need to wait until you are sufficiently healed to do so. Dr. Jean will carefully monitor your recovery and advise you as to when it is safe to resume exercising.

In general, most patients can resume regular activity and light exercise after about four weeks. However, strenuous exercise, heavy lifting and other activities that may aggravate the surgical site should be avoided for about six weeks.

Your Tummy Tuck Results

You’ll start to see results immediately but they will continue to improve as swelling decreases and your body continues to heal, but it may take as long as six months before your final outcome is apparent. While this may seem like a long time to wait, most of our patients find that this timeframe is a worthwhile tradeoff for the beautiful midsection they achieve once their body has fully recovered.

Contact our Philadelphia Plastic Surgeon

Please contact Main Line Plastic Surgery using the form on this page or call 484-222-0010 today to schedule a tummy tuck consultation. We serve patients in Bryn Mawr, Villanova and throughout the Main Line of Philadelphia.

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