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What Is Recovery from Tummy Tuck Surgery Like?

Following tummy tuck surgery (abdominoplasty), the majority of women and men will notice some degree of bruising and swelling throughout the treatment region. These postoperative symptoms are completely normal and should gradually dissipate over the course of several days until fully resolved.

To minimize any potential discomfort that may be experienced during the initial stages of recovery, our board-certified plastic surgeons utilize EXPAREL®—an advanced anesthetic designed to provide pain relief for 72 hours after surgery. In the event there is still some discomfort present following this three day period, over-the-counter medication can usually be taken until all soreness and/or tenderness has dissipated.

After approximately seven days of rest, most individuals look and feel comfortable enough to resume normal daily routines, including office jobs, school, running errands around town, etc. That said, any heavy lifting, intense exercise, contact sports, and other strenuous physical activities should be avoided for at least three more weeks, as any moderate to significant strain placed on the abdominal region and/or incision throughout the healing process can negatively impact the final aesthetic outcome.

While one’s incision may look slightly pink and swollen initially, its appearance should gradually diminish over time, ideally fading to a relatively thin white line with proper scar management and care. Due to its low position on the abdomen, the final scar can usually be concealed underneath most underwear and bathing suit styles.

Ultimately, it is important to keep in mind that everyone heals differently, so recovery after tummy tuck surgery will be unique to each individual. Following a review of your specific needs and goals, one of our doctors can provide a personalized idea of what to expect based on a treatment plan designed just for you. To schedule a consultation with Daniel Y. Maman, MD or Stafford R. Broumand, MD at 740 Park Plastic Surgery, please contact our practice today.

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