Tummy Tuck Recovery Timeline

By David Passaretti, MD on June 24, 2019

Tummy tuck before and afterAfter losing a lot of weight, people tend to experience serious issues with loose skin. The stretch marks and sagging won’t go away naturally. The only option to enhance your body contour is to undergo a tummy tuck (abdominoplasty). Darien, CT plastic surgeon Dr. David Passaretti can remove excess skin and leave you looking slimmer, trimmer, and healthier.

Many people wonder what the recovery process is like after tummy tuck since the procedure is so involved. Let’s take a moment to cover the basic recovery timeline.

Taking Time Off from Work

A tummy tuck is a major body contouring procedure, and it can take time to fully recover from it. Because of that, it’s recommended that people take time off from their job to focus on recovery. Most patients who have desk jobs usually only need to take a week off before they return to work. People with more physically demanding professions will require more time off.

What to Expect Immediately After Surgery

Immediately following a tummy tuck, patients will usually feel tired and groggy. This is the result of the general anesthetic and sedative wearing off. Patients should be helped home by a loved one and given time to focus on rest. A loved one should be present for the next few days to help monitor their recovery and help with errands as needed.

The First Days After Tummy Tuck

In the first days after tummy tuck, patients will experience soreness, discomfort, bruising, and swelling. It’s important that patients take prescription pain relievers as directed to manage their discomfort. Patients should carefully monitor surgical drains and dressings, and follow all instructions for post-op care.

The First Two Weeks After Tummy Tuck

Side effects will improve after the first week, with additional improvements thereon as patients continue the healing process. By this time, patients will have returned to our Darien practice for a follow-up visit to monitor recovery.

Even though patients will need to wait to return to many physical activities, we encourage tummy tuck patients to walk around their home a little bit each day. This will promote circulation and aid in the healing process. It’s also a good way to prevent blood clots from forming in the legs, which can lead to serious complications.

The End of the First Month

A month after tummy tuck surgery, patients should be back to most of their usual activities. Heavy lifting and strenuous exercise may still be off the table for another few weeks. Swelling will have gone down significantly, though patients will notice some residual swelling and some bruising that will continue to fade with time.

The Months Ahead

In the months after tummy tuck surgery, patients will continue to return to life as normal. Regular exercise can be resumed, including cardio and weight training. Patients should notice surgical scars becoming a little less noticeable, with improvements from month to month. Additional follow-up visits are scheduled to monitor long-term recovery.

Tummy Tuck Surgery Years Down the Road

As the years go by after tummy tuck, surgical scars will continue to fade. While they won’t disappear, they should be far less noticeable. Patient body contour will be significantly improved, and you will notice that clothes fit better. You will feel much more comfortable and confident about the way you look.

Learn More About Body Contouring

For more information about tummy tuck and how it can benefit you, be sure to contact a skilled cosmetic plastic surgeon. Dr. Passaretti can be reached at his practice in Darien by phone at (203) 656-9999.

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