What is the average recovery time for a tummy tuck?
Abdominoplasty (tummy tuck) is one of my procedures where I tell women, “you will be able to bounce a quarter on your stomach”. In order to get that great look, you need two weeks for recovery time. To help with your discomfort, we place a pain pump in for the first 4 days. At 4-6 weeks you will be fully recovered and picking out those new clothes!
Every patient’s experience and convalescence is individualized.
Some patient’s are very stalwart and recover quickly while other patients take a little extra time. You can expect to be off of work for at least 2 weeks depending on if you have an office job or a job that requires manual labor. I recommend no heavy lifting or strenuous activity for 4 weeks. After that time, I recommend that you slowly return to you normal routine. Again this is variable from patient to patient.
A “tummy tuck” procedure is an outpatient procedure that many patients go home several hours after the procedure, and some choose to stay overnight more as a “luxury” but not a requirement. I am one of the first plastic surgeons in Houston to use Exparel which is a new local long acting “numbing” medication that has markedly decreased post operative pain and I believe for the first time made this procedure a true “outpatient” procedure. My patients are able to get back to cardio at 2 weeks, add light weights at 4 weeks after the procedure, and do abs and situps at 6 weeks. I recommend to all patients that are working to try to get 2 weeks off of work. I hope this helps!
Tummy tuck recovery is quite predictable – assuming no complications:
Week 1: 5 days of pain, you need muscle relaxants and narcotic pain killers.
Week 1-2: 10 days of less pain but exhaustion. You walk slowly, need medicine to sleep comfortably at night.
Week 3 – you are at 60% energy – may get back to a near-by desk job but can do nothing else.Exhausted at night.
Week 4 – Getting to work is easier. Some energy for easy chores.
Week – you have almost 100% of normal energy and resume your full life.
Hope this helps!
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