A tummy tuck, also called abdominoplasty, is a method to get rid of loose skin found between the belly button and pubic hairline. When performed by an expert physician, a tummy tuck procedure will also remove unnecessary fat tissue thereby tightening the surrounding abdominal muscles. On average the procedure will take around 4 hours of operating time with up to 5 weeks of recovery. So what should a future patient expect during the recovery process?
Week 1 – Drink lots of fluids following the first 72-hours after surgery and you can maintain a normal diet. The important idea to remember is REST. Stay in bed for adequate recovery time. If you move around too much during the first five days you will jeopardize any results which would have been obtain through the tummy tuck procedure. Commonly, a compression garment and drain pumps are given to patients post-op. This equipment helps quicken the recovery time.
Week 2 - Patients can begin moving around at this phase. The muscle layer underneath the outer skin layer will begin knitting together in week two. This phenomenon is important in the recovery process but patients should still be moving around their environment with great care.
Week 3 – The recovery phase has been initiated by week 3. Don’t overdo physical exercise, e.g. walking. You should still not be driving at this point. Be sure to listen to your body – now is not the time to test your physical limits.
Week 4 – Patients can venture outside the house at this point and are advised to try gentle stretching. Patients may also feel a hardening along the wound which is to be expected and is known as the healing ridge.
Week 5 – All normal activities can be resumed. You may experience some prolonged swelling but this will subside. Contact the Face & Body Center today to learn more about the tummy tuck procedure and get to know many of our expert physicians.