The Side Effects of Tummy Tuck Surgery: What You Should Know By tmccall on July 26, 2016

A woman's lower torsoThe team at Lake Country Plastic and Hand Surgery has a strong reputation for quality here in the greater Milwaukee area. Part of this comes from our emphasis on pre-op and post-op care. This helps ensure patients are in good health going into surgery and will heal quickly after the surgery is performed.

Pre-op and post-op care are quite important for tummy tuck surgery (abdominoplasty). We'd like to take a moment to consider some of the side effects patients will experience after the surgery is performed. By knowing what to expect, you'll be better prepared to recover without anxiety.

Side Effects Are Natural and Part of the Healing Process

Let's make one thing clear: side effects are not the same thing as complications.

Side effects are part of the natural healing process. They're a sign of your body responding to the surgery and what occurred during the surgical process. They are temporary, and patients will notice their side effects abate as the days and weeks after surgery pass. Complications, on the other hand, are serious health issues that are a sign a patient is not healing properly.

During a consultation at our practice, we can go over side effects and complications in greater detail so you know what to look out for as you are healing from surgery.

Pain and Discomfort

As you may have expected, you're going to feel some soreness and discomfort after you undergo tummy tuck surgery. This is especially true when it comes to pain around the stomach and lower abdominal area where incisions are made. This pain and discomfort is manageable, and patients can take recommended pain relievers to help ease matters. The pain should become less of an issue after a few days of healing.

Bruising and Swelling

Both bruising and swelling are common after surgery as well. The bruising will be quite pronounced around the incision sites, and the swelling is likely to effect the abdominal area. By the end of two weeks, the bruising should have faded in a major way. Major swelling typically persists for at least a month, with minor swelling persisting for a few months after. Both of these matters can be addressed to some degree by wearing your surgical compression garment as directed.

Sensitivity and Numbness

Since nerves may be affected while making incisions, it's not uncommon for patients to notice issues with numbness or sensitivity around the abdominal area. This typically lasts for a few weeks, abating as a patient continues to heal.

Scarring and What to Expect

Scars are a given following any surgery. The size and nature of your post-surgical scarring is dependent on genetics and other factors. Some patients may have issues with thick scar tissue and keloids, which can be discussed during the pre-op consultation.

For the most part, patients should notice major visible scarring for the first months after surgery, with scars fading the months and years ahead.

Attend Post-Surgical Follow-Ups as Directed

Patients should attend all scheduled follow-up visits at the practice. This ensures you're healing properly and allows us to address any needs as they arise. There will be several follow-ups, and out goal at each visit is to help you along on the road to recovery.

Learn More About Tummy Tuck

For more information about tummy tuck surgery and how it can benefit you, be sure to contact our cosmetic surgery center today. The team at Lake Country Plastic and Hand Surgery is here to help you achieve improved body contour and to enhance your overall appearance.

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Dr. Tracy McCall

Lake Country Plastic and Hand Surgery

Dr. Tracy McCall is a board-certified plastic surgeon that has been providing exceptional results to patients since 2001. She is an active member of several professional organizations, including:

  • American College of Surgeons
  • American Medical Association
  • American Society of Plastic Surgeons
  • Association of Women Surgeons

Fill out our online form to request a consultation or call us in Waukesha, WI, at (262) 523-1200.

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