Some of the most common tummy tuck questions Dr. Lloyd Landsman receives are about the recovery period. The length of recovery largely depends on the extent of treatment, but there is a general timeline that patients often find helpful during the planning process.
Read on as the Long Island plastic surgeon shares a basic tummy tuck recovery timeline.
The First Few Days after Surgery
Immediately following surgery, patients normally have swelling, bruising and stiffness/tightness in the abdomen. Range of motion is limited and patients usually cannot stand up straight or completely bend over; many of them walk or sit slightly hunched over. A general rule of thumb is to avoid anything that could strain the incisions or the healing tissues.
During the first few days after surgery, Dr. Landsman asks patients to rest in bed or on the couch as much as possible, and sleep in a reclining position. At this point, it can be very helpful to have a companion around the clock to assist with getting out of bed or off the couch and going to the bathroom.
Patients can take pain medication as prescribed to keep discomfort at bay. They are also outfitted with compression garments around the waist immediately after surgery, which should stay in place for the initial recovery period.
Two Weeks after Surgery
About two weeks after surgery, some of the post-operative side effects have subsided (although swelling can persist at this point). Usually patients are back to driving, socializing and light activity within 10 days to two weeks.
Most patients with sedentary desk jobs resume work approximately two weeks after surgery. Those with more physically demanding jobs may need an extra week of recovery, depending on the nature of their occupation.
Four to Six Weeks after Surgery
The initial results can be seen about four to six weeks after surgery, continuing to improve over time as the swelling dissipates. Usually it is possible for patients to ease back into their exercise routines and slowly increase the length and intensity of their workouts. They can usually stop wearing the compression garment about five to six weeks after surgery.
Contact Dr. Landsman
The information in this post is for general education purposes only. Dr. Landsman counsels each patient individually, providing specific aftercare instructions and advising when it is safe to resume work, exercise and other activities.
If you have a question about the tummy tuck recovery, feel free to call 631-864-4111 or email Dr. Landsman today.